Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Morocco Board to pro-Polisario Wikipedia editors: "Use the sandbox next time."

The editors of Morocco Board are really getting the hang of this internet thing. They thought Western Sahara blogs were pretty cool, but now that they've discovered Wikipedia, you'll never be able to tear them off the computer.

Morocco Board likes Wikipedia, but thinks it'd be even better if Moroccans could swamp it with anti-Western Sahara opinions. That's why, in "Pro Polisario Activists abuse of the freedom of the free global encyclopaedia to push anti-Morocco agenda," Morocco Board shares some tips of the editing trade. Incidentally, the title of the article requires at least a revert.

Here are my favorite parts. I haven't seen such alarmism about Wikipedia since Encyclopedia Brittanica's annual report:

Wikipedia has now evolved to one of the most searched references by journalists and all active people in the academia, in the civic society and in the international public opinion, and there is almost not topic in the world that is not treated in this.

There are articles on Morocco as well. However they are sadly not always accurate as fanatic pro Polisario activists abuse of the free global encyclopaedia to push anti-Morocco propaganda. Unfortunately only few Moroccans are aware and participate actively to stop this.
So please, don't leave space for polisarian activists. The more you participate the more you country is presented in a fair and objective manner.
To the writer's credit, she or he later goes on to urge potential editors to follow Wikipedia's rules, and outlines the basics well.

Plus, they're right to be concerned. One Hump commenter Justin is permanently banned from Wikipedia for his pro-Polisario revisionism, and Western Sahara Info's Arre is active too. There are also a bunch of other people involved in disputes that are too complicated to explain here, even if I had any idea what went on. If you're interested in Western Sahara on Wikipedia, or just learning a bunch about Western Sahara through Wikipedia, check out this list of Western Sahara articles.

I'm pretty fond of Wikipedia's Western Sahara articles since the information I read there convinced me to get involved. Hurray for the dedicated people on both sides who try to balance one another out, but hurray especially for the pro-self-determination people, because I think they're right.


  1. You little sleuth you! I thought the entire world would be fooled by my baffling r/l switch -- but exposed, I must now withdraw to my high-tech Polisario cavern, where I plot and devise sinister new means for my crusade to twist and distort the truth about the Moroccanity of the Sahara. Long live the glorious rule of Algerian military intelligence!

  2. Thank you for your viewpoint. Interesting site.

  3. i cant believe they got so upset over the wikipedia article.. everyone knows that there are many idiots writing there and everybody has right to choose what he or she will believe. i really dont think wikipedia could change someone's opinion..

  4. Laroussi5:40 AM

    I reccon it is not so much a question of changing people's minds as giving them (the unknowing) a first positive impression about Morocco.

    And as you well know, first impressions last long... ;-)

    Instead of really changing the country's administration into something nice, the rulers of Morocco seem to aim to change the way their are percieved.