Facebook has an army looking for foreign interference: who can police Wikipedia?

Over at Israellycool last night Dave published the following pretty astonishing post by Mike G:

Unsurprisingly, this bias to the left also extends to a systematic bias against Israel. One key way in which Wikipedia is systematically biased against Israel is related to the website’s fundamental policy that all information presented in its articles be verified through the use of citations to “reliable sources.” The problem, therein, is that on Wikipedia what are considered reliable sources are generally “legacy media” (e.g. The New York Times) and works from academia, both of which are already known for their own systematic bias against Israel.

Within Wikipedia, like in the broader public sphere, matters related to Israel are controversial and fraught with disputes, resulting in a highly disproportionate amount of time and energy being consumed on this subject on the site. Due to these long-standing disputes, Wikipedia has adopted special rules governing editing articles related to the Arab–Israeli conflict (other controversial subjects are also subject to special editing restrictions, including abortion, the Syrian Civil War, and global warming).

Veteran anti-Israel editors are adept at gaming the system by using these special rules to limit the influence and efficacy of pro-Israel editors, if not to get them outright banned from editing in the topic area or from all of Wikipedia.

Incidentally, when I tweeted about this story (which was retweeted by OAN anchor and journalist Jack Posobiec) I got back a typical response from an Israel hater:

You and I both know this is nonsense, since the Israel gov’t pays to have pro-Zionist articles..

This tweeter linked to an old, old video story from 2010 about a single training day to teach people how to edit in Wikipedia. I seem to remember I might have been invited to it. The first person on the video is Naftali Bennet back when he was running Yesha Council which wasn’t a significant Israeli government backed institution even back then. I absolutely know for sure there is no determined or co-ordinated “Zionist” effort paid for by the Israeli government to counter the bias on Wikipedia though I wish there was!

I’ve known for a long time that Wikipedia entries on Israel (and often on Jewish matters too) are very slanted. It’s not always the most obvious of lies but it is every form of deceptive framing, suppression of explanatory background and nearly always geared to make the Israel look bad.

This coincides with something David Collier has just published about a text book used to teach about Israel to UK school children:This book has NO PLACE inside a classroom. It is poisonous – it rewrites history – it whitewashes anti-Jewish violence – and every child who has studied from it – has been exposed to hard-core anti-Zionist revisionist material. Faithfully delivered to them by their teacher, their school and the taxpayer.

‘In August 1929, angry clashes occurred over holy sites in Jerusalem. These grew into 4 days of bloody riots and mob violence throughout Palestine, leaving 133 Jews and 116 Arabs dead.’

Here is one example from the book. The year is 1929.

That is how the ‘school’ book describes the bloody massacres of Jewish communities as Arab mobs ran riot throughout Mandatory Palestine. As ‘Arab / Jew’ clashes:

school textbook

The comparable fatality count is more than deceptive. The reason 116 Arabs died, is because the British killed them as they tried to stop them massacring Jews.

This trick used with the fatality count is an absolutely textbook (excuse me) method of reframing to demonise Jews and whitewash the actions of those who murder Jews. This is the kind of thing that is all over Wikipedia. Which is why it comes as no surprise in Collier’s full report that some of this textbook is even sourced from Wikipedia (something the school kids are told not to do!).

School by Wikipedia extract from David Collier’s report on UK Pearson Textbook.

Now lets cross reference this with something in the New York Times:

In his conference call on Monday, Mr. Zuckerberg said that Facebook had become better able to seek out and remove foreign influence networks, relying on a team of former intelligence officials, digital forensics experts and investigative journalists. Facebook has more than 35,000 people working on its security initiatives, with an annual budget well into the billions of dollars.

“Three years ago, big tech companies like Facebook were essentially in denial about all of this,” said Ben Nimmo, head of investigations at Graphika, a social media analytics agency. “Now, they’re actively hunting.”

Facebook is a huge money spinner: Wikipedia begs for donations (though it has some pretty rich sustaining donors from (left leaning) Silicon Valley.

There is no way Wikipedia can ever invest the fortune that Facebook is spending every year on security and weeding out deceptive content. I would contend that Facebook’s model is heading away from profitability too but its immense market power will ensure that it remains profitable for a long time to come.

I believe Wikipedia is a much bigger problem for anti-Israel and anti-Jewish sentiment than any of the social media fights we hear a lot more about. In many respects, corruption of this kind of long standing reference material is going to be a far bigger societal problem than ephemeral social media posts and adverts.

Podcast talks about itself and Mark Zuckerberg’s new found free speech zeal at Facebook

Are you listening to me as a Podcast? Please let me know if you want this to continue. I’m seriously considering switching only to publishing on Steem. The simple fact is that’s a lot easier than maintaining my own WordPress site.

I also spoke about Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and his new push toward free speech (or so he says). There’s a lot more to say on this, I’m listening to him in his Fox News interview as I type this.

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You can join the fight against the Tech Goliaths in two ways, you have a no win no fee claim or you wish to help finance the case.

⭐️ Please join the case if you held crypto and have a claim.

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What happens when you reply to Donald Trump and tell him not to trust China?

Yesterday Trump tweeted the following congratulations to President Xi and the Chinese people for the 70th anniversary of the cultural revolution which murdered millions of people:

So I responded with a tweet invoking my friend Avi Yemini’s now famous internet meme:

If you don’t know the video you can see that in Avi’s tweet which he put up just a few minutes behind mine:

https://twitter.com/OzraeliAvi/status/1178988733120466946

But what interests me is the utter failure of Google Translate to come up with anything approaching a passable translation of all the insults that were hurled my way by an army of Chinese twitter accounts, bots or not.

I’ll start with just about the only one that Google Translate gets right.

“Why didn’t Hitler kill you?”

Food seems to be a common theme.

"Your mom will buy food within three days.”
“Your mom will buy food within three days.”

Once again food purchasing, but this time with chess! Is an accusation of playing chess a reference to the cultural revolution and the destruction of the bourgeois middle class?

“Your dad will be accused of playing chess, your mother must double the purchase of food.”
“Your dad will be accused of playing chess, your mother must double the purchase of food.”

Now we move on to the medicine section with some capitalism hate thrown in.

“Your mother will buy medicine and will increase the price.”
“Your mother will buy medicine and will increase the price.”

Insults about being a poor family man?

“Your mother as not taught you how to call your grandson?"
“Your mother as not taught you how to call your grandson?”

And we’ll end with possibly my favourite purely because it is so obviously completely without meaning.

“Your dad sells eucalyptus”
“Your dad sells eucalyptus”

How on earth can anyone claim that the world is anywhere near approaching some kind of useful, general Artificial Intelligence when the wealthiest company in the world can’t even begin to translate what are probably common curses from a language spoken by a billion people?

P.S. if anyone can actually read Chinese characters and give me real translations I’d love to hear from you in the comments!

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Podcast explains the Global Warming Climate Change Catastrophe Hoax

This is it…. how to talk about the Climate Catastrophe hoax without dismissing it all but without needing to go into the complete details of every scientific climate theory ever invented, tested, proved, disproved and replaced with something better.

I’m talking about how simulations work, what the atmosphere is composed of, what 400 parts per million actually means and why we say that instead of 0.04% even though its the same.

I also make reference to studies of local ground level pollution in Israel during Yom Kippur and how this drops very fast when we stop driving and running industry. That’s one of the reasons I’m optimistic that we can fix whatever man has done and we can live with any changes.

Man is hugely resilient and the planet is too. Together we’ll solve problems only as long as we don’t install political systems and governance that destroy human ingenuity. Installing globalised communistic or socialist systems seems to be what underlies all of those pushing the climate crisis hoax and their Green New Deal and other delusional focusing on CO₂ as the only thing that matters.

In the end I’m optimistic that man can solve all problems of changing climate whether we made it change or not. But not through communism, socialism or globalism and central control.

My previous important discussions on Climate Change:

Trump is a builder

I picked up the urge to watch this video of Trump at the wall from Dan Bongino’s podcast. I’m glad I did watch the whole thing. All through Trump’s 2015/16 campaign, and especially before his nomination, I watched his arena act. It was always a fantastic combination of great story telling and borderline stand up comedy. This was Trump before the teleprompter spoiled him. Later he developed the ability to wander off script a bit more but the teleprompter was still a disaster.

This is Trump holding an impromptu show and tell for the sceptical press. He brings in the experts around him, he praises the workers, he never takes credit for other people’s hard work. We don’t see it here but I’d love to know if he handed out $100 tips to the construction workers that day as we know he does with all the staff at hotels and other places he stops.

When he’s speaking about building, he knows his stuff. He understands how concrete and steel combine, different concrete formulations, densities and how they have to be poured. He fundamentally knows this business. He wanted to talk about the high tech systems, he was gently persuaded not to go into details. He might have been the guy at the top of his companies, but it is blindingly obvious he spent a whole lot of time on construction sites actually talking to and watching what craftsmen and labourers did at his companies.

This is the Trump that won the heartlands of America. This is what he needs to do more of.