July 21, 2008


Oh sure you may think you’re cock of the walk when you edit the Wikipedia article on Doug characters and change Mr. Bone’s name to “Mr. Boner.” But your little juvenile act of wikivandalism is only fleeting. Some dude dedicated to preserving the sanctity of the Doug article is gonna erase your edits in only a few hours, if not minutes. They even have little robots to do that sort of thing now. Every day, roving bands of Wikipedia fact checkers (once an oxymoron) comb through articles and demand sources and citations for every sentence in Wikipedia, which is why you see [citation needed] everywhere. If you really want to mess with Wikipedia, you gotta think big. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Become a reporter for a respected news source, such as The New York Times or the BBC.
  2. Find a fake, unverified fact from a Wikipedia article. (Example: Neematoads are slimy, ugly creatures that reside in ponds and if you catch one you’ll be the most popular kid in school.)
  3. In one of your articles for the aforementioned respected news source, drop in that fake fact.
  4. Since the fake fact is now in a legitimate source, your article can now be used as a source for it on Wikipedia. The fake fact is now “true.”
  5. Profit! (This is mostly a figure of speech as I haven’t figured out how one would profit from this yet)

This will take at least a decade as you attend journalism school and move up the ranks, but I’m sure you’re more than up to the task.