Research:From the media to Wikipedia: the relationship between news and vandalism in the encyclopedia during the 2019 Social Outburst

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Duration:  2022-June – ??

This page documents a research project in progress.
Information may be incomplete and change as the project progresses.
Please contact the project lead before formally citing or reusing results from this page.

This projectsw aims to know the relationship of the news of the media in Chile, with the vandalisms that were detected in the Wikipedia in Spanish during the social outbreak of Chile in 2019. With the detailed history of the articles, it is possible to locate those editions that were reversed and cataloged as vandalism, in order to classify them and know which topics are the ones that generate more vandalism in times of crisis. In this way, it would be possible to know if what happens in Wikipedia is related to the media and if the vandalism is related to them; thus being able to anticipate this type of edition and understand how Wikipedia can contribute to the verification of information.

Goals and Impact[edit]

One of the most important impacts of studying how news affects different platforms is being able to understand how the media shapes our society. The difference, in this case, is that although the news shapes our algorithmic spheres of social networks, it cannot affect "what Wikipedia shows us", since this is an information platform without algorithms involved. One of the expected results is to be able to recognize some pattern within the media, perhaps review which medium is the one that has the most impact on Wikipedia; traditional media are probably the ones that have the most impact since they have greater visibility in the territory. Understanding the vandalism that happens during a sociopolitical crisis helps us a lot to prepare for the next crisis. Having concrete results on how the news impacts vandalism can help to review article protection policies, perhaps helping to identify which ones can be protected before and not wait for the article to be vandalized. In addition, we cannot rely only on "the news tells the truth", we have seen --especially in Latin America-- that the media opt for likes and do not always verify the information. Therefore this investigation will also encounter misinforming news that is very likely to affect Wikipedia directly.

Also, and in line with movement strategies, this research is totally related to identifying impact issues and understanding what role misinformation plays in times of crisis in the Wikipedia environment. That way we can know how our projects (not only Spanish Wikipedia) can be misused or manipulated by detecting threats with significant potential for harm, such as misinformation.

Research questions[edit]

  • What news content from the media is the one that produces the most malicious editions on Wikipedia in Spanish during the Social Outburst in Chile in 2019?
  • What are the types of vandalism that occur most on Wikipedia in Spanish based on the topics analyzed in the media during the Social Outburst in Chile in 2019?
  • What type of articles on the Spanish Wikipedia were most vandalized as a result of the news content of the media during the Social Outburst in Chile in 2019?



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