Larry Sanger Wants to Rumble With Jimmy Wales

A survey of Larry Sanger’s Wikipedia contributions reveals that 100% of his edits over the past year are devoted to promoting Citizendium, knocking Wikipedia, attacking Jimmy Wales, or promoting Larry’s role in the creation of Wikipedia.

I noted in my blog about Citizendium, that Larry devoted an entire page on his website and several slashdot articles to promoting the importance of his role in creating Wikipedia. I also noted that Larry is the largest contributor to the Larry Sanger article talkpage on Wikipedia. Despite Larry’s clear role in creating Wikipedia, it should be noted that he quit the project five years ago on March 1, 2002 when his salary was cut off.

Larry Bites Jimmy

It’s well known that Larry uses his blog to offer tacit criticisms of Wikipedia, for instance last week when he declared there is a strong case for holding Wikipedia liable for defaming Fuzzy Zoeller (for the record, not even Fuzzy Zoeller claims to hold Wikipedia accountable).

Larry Sanger Blames Jimmy Wales for Essjay Fiasco

With the recent Essjay embroglio, Sanger launched a fresh attack on Jimmy Wales in his post, Wikipedia Firmly Supports Your Right to Identity Fraud. Here’s an excerpt of Sanger’s vitriol:

I’ve become increasingly disillusioned by Jimmy’s behavior, but this I simply wouldn’t have expected. It’s one thing to revise history self-servingly. But this new incident seems self-destructive on a level beyond previous incidents. Doesn’t Jimmy realize that this could well blow up in his face–that it could well be picked up by the news media and severely damage not only Wikipedia’s reputation, but Wikia’s bottom line (since Wikia is, still, Essjay’s employer)?

Over the next two days, Larry Sanger wrote three more posts trying to convince the world that Jimmy Wales is responsible for the Essjay scandal

I would like to point out, therefore, why this can be considered a scandal: it reveals that Wikipedia’s management did not regard it as a problem if one of its own co-managers engaged in identity fraud for personal advantage. Indeed, Wikipedia’s management knowingly aided and defended such fraud. Only after these sad facts were publicly exposed, only after there was a hue and cry, did Jimmy Wales decide to ask for Essjay’s resignation. Critics may claim that the world of Wikipedia has its own irremediably corrupt ethics; but the recent backpedalling of Wikipedia’s management actually demonstrates that Wikipedia is in fact still constrained by the higher ethics of the larger and more mature world of which it is a part.

By 2pm on March 5, Larry blogs (for the second time) that he is done writing about the scandal. But he appears again on Jimmy’s Wikipedia Talk Page at 5pm to write his fifth talkpage message to Jimmy in three days; a four paragraph moral rant in which he again claims he is done with the situation…

This is, I promise, the last you’ll hear from me about this. If anyone is going to hold your feet to the flames on this, it won’t be me. I have to admit I’m just too disgusted to care anymore. -Larry Sanger

Of course, Larry wasn’t done. Several hours later, when Jimmy’s talk page was archived due to volumnious contributions on the Essjay issue, partially from being slashdotted, Larry chimes in to insinuate this is part of the Larry Sanger conspiracy.

Of course, I have found my questions from ten hours ago–not personal attacks, not trolling, but perfectly honest questions–buried [[User talk:Jimbo Wales/Archive 20|in the archive]]. We’ll all draw our own conclusions and as I said, I’m done. – Larry Sanger


3 Responses to Larry Sanger Wants to Rumble With Jimmy Wales

  1. […] Meanwhile, I have casually noted that 100% of Sanger’s Wikipedia contributions in the past year have been devoted to stridently promoting his own role in co-founding Wikipedia, while simultaneously criticizing the site. […]

  2. […] on a new wiki. And it is daunting to be compared to a juggernaut like Wikipedia. However, given Sanger’s repeated and aggressive attacks on Wikipedia, he is inviting this sort of open […]

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