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Monday, April 24, 2006

VGS Welcomes the PBS News Hour!

It would appear that the PBS News Hour is doing some research for a Claudia Emerson segment and stopped by the Claudia Emerson Page for an extended look-see:

Location: Virginia, Alexandria, United States
Hostname: ([IP]***.*.**.*)
Entry Page:
Exit Page:
Referring URL:

I have long been a fan of the PBS News Hour. It is the finest non-magazine format news program on television and has been for decades. (The finest magazine format, bar none, is Frontline.) I am delighted to think that the Claudia Emerson Page and Wiki Watchdog's article Is Wikipedia Handing Out Your Browsing Information to Thousands? may have been a small help to their effort.

The above traffic information is provided by courtesy of which has provided the VGS blog family with nearly perfect service for well over a year now. Thanks StatCounter!

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Wikipedia: a Privacy Disaster Area?

Well, several of the crew over at Wikipedia have made a fine public display of how they are by all appearances in the habit of using visitor IP addresses to search for personal vulnerabilities in persons of whom they do not approve. No sense at all that their fellow Registered Users would rein them in for breaking any Wikipedia rules or that anything out of the ordinary was being done. It's a privacy hole wide enough to sail the QEII through.

I'd been planning to start another computer security blog for logistical reasons. The time seemed right and the result is Virtual Grub Street's Wiki Watchdog blog. Here are a couple of teasers from the first article:

Any user is provided access to the browser information of anyone who checks onto any editing platform throughout all public Wikipedia pages! That is, anyone who becomes a registered user can view the browser information by virtue of the mere fact of having registered. Adminstrator status is not required. Thus the following "Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents" chat thread in which I am freely and publically defamed, my personal information is posted and a plan is discussed about attacking me via that information:...


I strongly advise that no one donate to Wikipedia so long as such behavior is being indulged in. At a minimum, the
following changes are clearly necessary:...
[Go to the full article >>> Is Wikipedia Handing Out Your Browsing Information to Thousands?]

I've received no apology. The offending public revelations of my personal information has not been replaced with asterisks. Only time will tell if the changes are made.

As for the question: "Why are you listing the info if the breach of your privacy offends you so?" I intend that my reply to their defamatory comments and open plans to attack me will show up on the search engines ahead of theirs for all major related search terms.

Related Stories:
Man-Boy Love Advocate Accused of Using Wikipedia to Troll for Interested Parties (March 4, 2007). Rookie Revolyob, Clayboy, Zanthalon, et al: Why is Wikpedia a Pedophile Haven?