The Signpost

In the media

The Signpost's investigative story recognized, Wikipedia turns 18 and gets a birthday gift from Google, and more editors are recognized

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By Bri and Kudpung

The Wall Street Journal credits The Signpost for breaking story on Acting United States Attorney General

The Wall Street Journal credited a report from The Signpost

From The Wall Street Journal on December 26: Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker Incorrectly Claims Academic All-American Honors, "Questions about Mr. Whitaker’s claims to have been an Academic All-American were raised Monday on Wikipedia Signpost, an in-house publication for Wikipedia editors, by a user named Smallbones."

United States national media and international media covered the story as well. A sample of the publications who reported the story after WSJ includes The Hill, Newsweek and Newser in the States;[1][2][3] Daily Mail and The Week in the UK;[4][5] The Japan Times, the Malay Mail, and Reuters internationally.[6][7][8] Only Newser and WSJ attributed The Signpost. B

The Most Famous Person To Die In 2018

Stephen Hawking, one of Huffpost's top 20 celebrities who passed away in 2018. Pictured here talking to Barack Obama.

The Most Famous Person To Die In 2018, According To Data Science: – or Wikipedia. In a well researched article – at least some interesting stats – on 28 December James O'Malley of the HuffingtonPost reveals that 'more celebrities died in 2018 than in any year since at least 2010' – based on data extracted from Wikipedia: "...we’re here to determine who was the most famous person to die in 2018 and whether more famous people died this year than in previous years. ..." Paying tribute to Wikipedia's coverage of dead celebs, supported by numerous charts and tables, the article makes not only interesting reading but demonstrates again how useful Wikipedia can be: "The first problem when building a model for this is defining the parameters: Who exactly counts as a celebrity? Sure, we could simply pick whoever we remember dying, but this is science — which is why we turned to every serious academic’s favorite tool: Wikipedia." K

Shoddy journalism

Olivia Colman at Moet BIFA 2014

"Olivia Colman reveals battle with Wikipedia over her age: ‘We’d have to see a birth certificate’ ", reports Amy Hunt on 29 January in woman&home. Award-winning English actress and Hollywood star Olivia Colman faced hostility from Wikipedia editors who refused to publish her correct age, making her 52 years old instead of only 44 (now 45) and then demanding her birth certificate before they would correct it. After several attempts to communicate with Wikipedia without a reply, Colman who has won over 35 major awards, retorted to the demand with ", ‘whose f****** birth certificate have you looked at in the first place to make me eight years older?’” Several other publications, including the Daily Mail, The Mirror, The Independent, Evening Standard, Sky News and Harper's Bazaar, have published the story based on a podcast with David Tennant. It would be a good story if it were true, but Wikipedia editors have thoroughly debunked Colman's claim in a discussion at Talk:Olivia Colman. Colman's birthdate has been reported correctly since 2006 with the exception of a short-lived case of vandalism.K, S

In brief

Jim Henderson (Jim.henderson)
Jess Wade (Jesswade88)
KING-TV showed this image and the article it illustrates

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@Smallbones: Your article and the aftermath, about how WSJ and Newser did credit The Signpost whereas others did not, prompts me to ask the same question for Wikipedia. I was also creating another Wikipedia page University of Farmington scam just now where I stumbled on the same question when I saw that Washington Post had said in their article that Detroit Post had broken the story first and I felt morally obliged to mention it in the article too. So the same question.. Should Wikipedia name the origin of investigative stories, even small ones? This got me thinking and prompted me to ask a question on idealab too just now. What do you think Smallbones? (This has nothing to do with supporting or opposing, merely trying to understand this situation personally and in a better way from someone who has experienced it firsthand) Regards. DiplomatTesterMan (talk) 15:51, 31 January 2019 (UTC)[reply]
It's an interesting question. I think that the Village Pump discussion has it more or less correct: Wikipedia is not news so there is *usually* no need to call out in the text who first reported it. Even so, putting the first news report as the 1st footnote, is a good idea. There are times when I mention the first source in the text, but it is a 2-edged sword. If only 1 source is putting their reputation on the line and making a truly remarkable statement that will be notable in the long-term, then our readers need to know that it's only 1 source, and they deserve credit or blame when they are right or otherwise. Once everybody is reporting the same thing, there's usually no reason to put the 1st source in the text of an encyclopedia.
What I really want to say here - one mention of last month's story in the WSJ is certainly enough for me. Other media were right to cite the WSJ because the WSJ did not just take my word on things. Via email they asked me some very detailed questions, and then they checked it out for themselves. There were a couple of things that I "knew" but couldn't check out in enough detail to add here. They were able to confirm them. The WSJ obviously has very good resources for fact checking, and when they checked out the story, that's the only thrill that mattered to me. Smallbones(smalltalk) 18:45, 31 January 2019 (UTC)[reply]


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