Wikipedia boss accused of accepting "donation" to edit

Last week, it was a former employee making accusations about his spending habits, today Jimmy Wales is facing yet another attack over the implication is that he accepted a "donation" to edit a Wikipedia entry.

Former Novell chief scientist Jeffrey Merkey says he donated $5000 to the Wikimedia Foundation in exchange for changes to his Wikipedia entry and that Wales agreed to "use his influence" to remove remarks.

Merkey has issued a statement that reads: "In exchange for a substantial donation ... Wales would use his influence to make Merkey's article adhere to Wikipedia's stated policies with regard to internet libel 'as a courtesy' and place Merkey under his 'special protection' as an editor".

Officially supported by Wikipedia, who deny the allegation is true, Wales has responded by stating: "Of course I would never offer, nor accept any offer, whereby a donation would buy someone special editorial treatment in the encyclopaedia".

The BBC reports that the edit history of the page does show changes were made by Jimmy Wales and that the page was then "protected", so that no further edits can be made by the public.


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