Mknac’s Weblog

Diving into the shallow pool of Web 2.0 and Social Media head first!

Highway Robbery

An article in the local paper reminded me of a local government program I loathe.  As you may be aware our so-called Montgomery County and Gaithersburg City governments, foolishly elected by us, has taken to robbing citizens of their cash while driving on local roads.

Gaithersburg, MD Safe Speed

Gaithersburg, MD Safe Speed

I will not vote for and urge my fellow residents not to vote to re-elect Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett,  Gaithersburg Mayor Sidney A. Katz or any members of the Montgomery County Council or Gaithersburg City Council who voted for or support the use of speed cameras.

These devices are schemed by our tax and spend governments under the disguise of some vehicular safety program to pour money into the coffers of the government and their contractors.  See Montgomery County’s and Gaithersburg’s deception plan here called the “Safe Speed Program.”

But we all know that the real reason for these devices is to fleece the residents, commuters and visitors of their money. Our faceless local government bureaucrats are salivating as they dream about how to spend your money from speed camera tickets on their local pork barrel projects that benefit contractors.

The reason speed cameras are nothing but a highway robber tool or perhaps a driver TAX or FEE is because these devices do not modify driver behavior.  For example, if somebody is speeding and runs through one of these robbery traps the device is activated and the person keeps on driving at the same speed.  How was safety increased?  It wasn’t because the speed of the vehicle in a “dangerous area” was not slowed by the speed camera.  No behavior was modified.  Nobody’s driving behavior is modified getting a speeding ticket two weeks later.

Of course the government will always justify speed cameras by producing a report prepared by their contractor and most likely an extra study from the speed camera manufacturer that they say shows that the use of speed cameras reduces vehicle speed.  Are you really going to believe a report from the contractors benefiting from the goverment using these devices against its citizens?  Could a report paid for by the government (from your taxes) from a contractor benefiting from the use of speed cameras be fair and objective?  I don’t believe these studies, do you?  It is in the contractor’s self interest to conclude that speed cameras supposedly reduce vehicle speed.

Additionally see this question from the “Safe Speed Program” Frequently Asked Questions:
“Q: What is the fine?
A: Violators must pay a $40 fine. Since the violations are being treated as civil and not criminal violations, there are no license points assigned and vehicle insurance providers are not notified of the citation.”

Where Gaithersburg says they are using Speed Cameras.

Where Gaithersburg says they are using Speed Cameras.

By not assessing points or notifying your insurance they are encouraging you to just pay the fine and move on to other issues.  They know that if they were to assess points to your driver’s license these hundreds of thousands of tickets would be contested in court.  But what they really are doing is tricking you into paying the fine rather than fight it.

According to the Examiner’s article “Monthly speed cameras nab 20,00 per month” 178,000 people have received tickets since our local governments started using these devices against us nine months ago.

As usual our state and local governments refuse to live within a reasonable budget for their tax base.  In these economic times our local Montgomery County and Gaithersburg City governments would rather find a new revenue stream from the citizen’s pockets than make the governmental decisions to reduce unneeded services and pet projects.

Of course they’ll say the same old tired Government-PR-Speak that speed cameras are for our safety.  If caught off their talking points our elected officials will fall back on something like they want to keep the high quality services we have here.

I’d rather see our local government cut un-needed programs, reduce duplicate programs, cut program office creep and find new efficiencies rather than find a new way to tax /fee/rob and spend.  I’ve lived in several states that didn’t have all the taxes and fees that Maryland has.  Yes, they had sales taxes and other ways to generate money for local government.  But overall I’d say the tax rate was less and their services were as good or better than Montgomery County’s and Gaithersburg’s.

I’m sure our community would survive without the revenue stream from speed cameras.  But like a addict and their drug of choice they can’t resist.  In this case the addict is local government and the drug is your money.  Something government always wants and finds new ways to separate from you to them.

And no I haven’t received a speed camera ticket from Montgomery County or Gaithersburg…yet. But I did get one in DC about 6 months ago for going 36 in a 25 zone.  And yes I took the easy way out and paid my fine on-line to avoid the hassle.  If there are no points why fight it?  Just like our governments planned and wanted.

But I’m a REGISTERED VOTER, who actually VOTES.  And I WILL VOTE AGAINST EVERY LAST ONE OF THEM IN THE NEXT ELECTION, even if the challenger supports speed cameras just to get them out.

Just to be clear I am not advocating for reckless driving or speeding.  I see crazy things on the DC area roads all the time.  The majority of drivers operate their vehicles in a safe manner minding their driving skills and traffic conditions.  If the real goal is to lower speed limits in a dangerous area, a police car sitting on the side of the road will do that.  A speed camera will not.

July 30, 2008 Posted by | social media | , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Yes the Blog Goes On

We’ll we’ve have come to the end of our class on Social Media this summer at Georgetown University.  It’s been a great class.  My classmates and I have learned a great about social media.  I’m really glad I took this class.  I believe as more organizations turn to social media in their communications strategies this course has provided a solid foundation for what Web 2.0 / Social Media is and how to use social media as a part of your communications with stakeholders.

I will miss checking out my classmate’s blogs.  It’s been fun seeing what they’ve been up to between class blog posts and commenting on their blogs.  Myself I’m going to keep blogging and twitting.  I wonder how many of us will continue to blog?  I’ll check in with them from time to time to see what’s up and who’s still blogging.

I am looking forward to the short break between summer and fall semesters though!

July 27, 2008 Posted by | social media | Leave a comment

Campaigning in the Digital Globalized Era

I thought lyrics from Bob Dylan’s popular song The Times They Are A-Changin’ were appropriate for this post.

“Come senators, congressmen

Please heed the call

Don’t stand in the doorway

Don’t block up the hall

For he that gets hurt

Will be he who has stalled

There’s a battle outside

And it is ragin’.

It’ll soon shake your windows

And rattle your walls

For the times they are a-changin’.” Bob Dylan, The Times They Are A-Changin’

This week our assignment was to investigate what is happening with the 2008 presidential campaign and social media. Well, let me be the 1100 person to report that political campaigns, they are a changin. It appears that from my investigations that the Democratic Party is adopting to the changing landscape of a globalized world by embracing Web 2.0 and Social Media. The Republican Party appears to be, to be kind, tepid in truly embracing Web 2.0 and Social Media platforms as part of their strategy.

For example here is my quick survey of three popular social media sites. I could have continued the survey but I think this trend of greater support for Obama rather than McCain will continue on all social media sites.

Facebook; Obama 1,203,257 supporters / McCain 179,477 supporters.

MySpace; Obama 430,071 friends / McCain 59,946 friends.

Twitter; Obama 50,068 followers / McCain no official twitter feed.

As noted by our instructor Garrett Graff, and author of The First Campaign, the 2004 presidential election was the beginning of the end of the current campaign model used by the major parties. Howard Dean’s campaign for the democratic presidential nomination in 2004 was the first to realize and tap into the rising tide of social networking to organize supporters, spread messages and most importantly raise money.

The Democratic Party has taken the experiences of the Dean campaign and adopted them to their strategy for the 2008 race. Clearly the Obama campaign dwarfs McCain’s efforts on-line. The Republican strategy seems to be based on the model President Bush used in 2000 and 2004.

This coming November’s presidential election will be a water shed event for future political campaign strategies. Does the advantage Obama has in the on-line world translate to real world votes? Are Obama’s on-line supporters just people who have drank the Obama cool-aid and are patting themselves on the back in a huge circle jerk? Do on-line supporters register to vote at the same rate as the general population? Do registered to vote, on-line supporters, actually vote at the ballot box at the same, greater or smaller rate than the rest of general population?

In my opinion if Obama beats McCain in a landslide then pundits and talking heads will have evidence to argue that on-line social networking is directly proportional to votes cast in the ballot booth. If McCain wins or Obama wins in a squeaker then that argument, at least for the 2008 election, is weakened.

But like Dylan said, “For the times they are a-changin’.” There was phenomenal growth in Web 2.0 platforms and Social Networking from 2004 to 2008 and their use politically. Is it enough to change the model of political campaigning for 2008? If the growth of Web 2.0 / Social Networking continues from 2008 to 2012 is that enough to tip the balance in favor of new ra evolution of political online social networking tactics?

Our November 2008 Presidential Election will answer many questions.

July 26, 2008 Posted by | social media | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Converted Cyclist

I recently read Stephanies’ blog post I Love Spinning on her blog Stephanie’s Thoughts. First I think its great that Stephanie is a certified cycle instructor and that she’s involved in not only doing something she likes and that is healthy exercise but she is also introducing other people to healthy activities!

Having never taken an indoor cycle or Spinning class I have to try to convince Stephanie to try outdoor cycling. I personally re-discovered cycling about two years ago. I was tired of going to the gym and running on a tread mill or elliptical machine and decided to try road cycling. My first step was to buy a bike.

I eventually settled on a Trek 1500 road bike, which is a high-end, entry level road bike. Trek makes phenomenal bikes and if you’re considering buying a bike I highly recommend Trek.

My Trek 1500 road bike

My Trek 1500 road bike

When I say re-discovered biking I mean it. It must have been 15 years since I had been on my old mountain bike. I can’t begin to tell you how much I enjoy riding my road bike.

The sun, the wind, other bikers, watching the black ribbon and scenery go by as your gobble up the road. It’s great! You’ll even see tangible results as your bicycle handing skills increase and your physical abilities increase. When I first started I thought 5-6 miles was a long ride. Lol Now I regularly ride 25-mile routes. That’s more a limit of the routes I ride rather than my level of fitness. Plus there is all the cool stuff you need; Oakley Radar Path sunglasses, Garmin Edge cycle gps, Road ID, gloves, jerseys the list goes on. OK you don’t need all that stuff, boys like their toys as the saying goes. All you need is a bike, helmet and the will to have fun.

Riding indoors is like running on a treadmill; going nowhere fast. Never to enjoy the rush of a downhill or to suffer on a climb! Don’t you yearn to ride free and feel the air as you cut a line through a turn?

I’ve even become a fan of pro cycling and follow the Tour De France like I follow the Ravens. I used to think watching the Tour was about as exciting as baseball, more boring than watching grass grow. Once you get to know the teams, riders, terms, roles, jerseys and strategies the Tour De France is truly one of the greatest sporting events of the year. This is a true team sport but allows for individual excellence within the team and the Tour at the same time. This time of year I can’t wait to get home and watch the morning’s stage on Vs in the evening.  Note to Vs, hey lets broadcast in HD next year!!!

So Stephanie, go outside and cylce and you won’t want to come back inside. You’ll discover a whole community of bikers in the DC area.

Here are some DC bicycle links:

Washington Area Bicyclist Association

Capital Crescent Trail

The Friends of the Washington & Old Dominion Trial

Potomac Pedalers Touring Club

Livestrong Lance Armstrong Foundations

Lance Armstrong

Greg Lemond (the first American to win the Tour De France)

July 24, 2008 Posted by | social media | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Here’s a TIP on DC taxicabs

Shannon wrote on her blog Shannon’s Corner about her recent experiences with DC taxicab drivers after the change from zones to meters in a post titled In the City – Is the Fare Fair?

For those not familiar with DC, this is a story of the little guy finally sticking it to the man.  DC recently changed the fare system used by taxis from zones to the meter system most of the world uses. In the zone system the city was broken down into zones.  You paid a flat fee if you moved within a zone.  You paid increasing fares if you moved from one to two zones, etc.  Amazingly taxicab drivers seemed to always find a way to cross a zone and charge you more on any trip.  Imagine that? By the way if you were in zone X traveling to another location in zone X but the cab crossed into zone Y and then back into zone X you were charged for traveling between zones.

DC Taxi Zone Map

DC Taxi Zone Map

After years of abuse at the hands of taxicabs and their special interest groups the zone system was beaten down by the good citizens of DC, commuters and visitors.  A blow for truth, justice and the American way was struck and heard across America.  After a long protracted battle with all sorts of special interest groups the city finally did away with the zone system and instituted the taxicab meters found in just about every other major city in the world.  Woo Hoo!  Yes, I’m a fan of the meter system.

Myself, I’ve had great taxicab experiences in DC since the switch to the meter system.  I even feel better about the fare because I know I’m not being told some BS about crossing a zone even if it’s a short ride.  I like looking at the meter and watching my money fly out of my pocket.  Assuming that the meter is properly calibrated (lets not open that can worms) I know the driver isn’t just making up some fare.

Shannon however hasn’t felt the joy since switching over to meters.  Shannon knows her way around DC and how to get from point A to point B.  In some of her recent taxicab adventures she’s encountered some unscrupulous taxicab drivers taking the long route to run up the meter charges!  I’m appalled that a DC taxicab driver would do such a thing…  But she’s also encountered courteous and honest taxicab drivers who have taken her by the shortest route.

So the bad taxicab driver makes more money than the good taxicab driver because he’s running up your bill taking the long way home.  Yes that’s not fair.   Here’s how I deal with it.

– When you enter the cab act like you know where you’re going. (even if you don’t)
– Ask or make a suggestion about the route so they know that you know the best route.
– If you don’t like the route tell the driver to take a different route.
– As far as the good driver goes I always tip for good service.  He doesn’t have to share the tip with the cab company etc.  So he’s actually better off getting me from point A to point B quickly and keeping the tip than sharing the couple dollar run up with the cab company.  If I think the taxicab driver has run up the bill he gets the fare on the meter to share with the man.

July 22, 2008 Posted by | social media | | 2 Comments

Milblogs; From the front to your PC

I’ve looked at several milbogs over the last couple days and have been generally impressed with the writing and coverage of diverse issues.  If you are looking for information about what’s going on try the perspective of one of our soldiers.  Its certainly different than what the media is telling you.

 

Coverage of conflict zones has changed significantly since WWI and the new globally connected Internet era that we live in has changed how we get information about the conflict in the Middle East and else where significantly. Unlike WWI during WWII the combat photographer and other government motion and still photographers brought the front lines to the home front during the war.  In Vietnam you saw a shift from government combat photographers to media reporters in the battlefield such as Dan Rather for example.

 

Now in 2008 although the media attempts to cover the war there are certain things and dangerous areas that they choose not to cover.  In many areas bloggers are filling in these gaps.  Military bloggers are covering stories, areas, and other topics that weren’t even considered during the Persian Gulf War of the 1990s.  The landscape of reporting from the front lines has changed due to blogging.

 

Milblogs is the term used for service members who blog.  Using web 2.0 and other social media platforms today’s soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines are blogging about their experiences in the military and specifically about their tours of duty in combat zones such as Iraq.  The old war news reels that were shown to audiences in movie theaters helped to promote the agenda of the nation and kept everyone informed about what was going on in the European and Pacific theaters.  News from the government, for the government and by the government was the generally the way of the times although the press certainly did their share of reporting also.  It is also important to remember that in WWII news was always delayed by from several days to several weeks.  Vietnam had a much quicker turn around but sometimes stories were still delayed a day or today.

 

Today in the era of global Internet-based communications news from the war zone is available almost as soon and soldiers return from a mission.  Military bloggers are bringing stories of the conflicts the U.S. is engaged into the homes of anybody with a computer and Internet connection.  If you are interested there many milblogs to choose from and new milbogs coming online every day. These bloggers are going out and conducting dangerous missions and then blogging about them soon after their return.  These bloggers sometimes include photos and video that they took.

 

I think this level of interaction with our service members is good for our country.  It is important that those of us not in the military and not engaged in the conflict remain connected to those who wear our nation’s uniform.  The public needs to know what is really going on in these areas and who is better positioned to tell you than those on the ground where the rubber meets the road?  Additionally an added benefit is that blogging allows soldiers to stay in touch with their families and friends giving them and us insight to what daily life is like is like in the sandbox.

 

Some milbogs if you’re interested:

American Soldier 

The Long War Journal 

Kaboom: A Soldier’s War Journal

The Thunder Run 

Army of Dude

July 21, 2008 Posted by | social media | , , , , | Leave a comment

The Capital Crescent Trail

The Capital Crescent Trail (CCT) is one of my favorite trails to cycle on. The CCT is a multi-use bicycle, running, walking trail that runs from Bethesda in Maryland to Georgetown in D.C. The 7-mile section from Bethesda to D.C. is paved and approximately 10 feet wide. At 7 miles that’s not enough for a long ride but the great thing about the CCT is that once you get to Georgetown it connects to several other trails that allows you to keep riding.

CCT and terrain profile from my cycle GPS

CCT and terrain profile from my cycle GPS

Generally my favorite route is to park at Roosevelt Island; cross the Potomac; hook around the Kennedy Center then catch the CCT up to Bethesda; come back down; follow the Potomac to Haines Point then head back to Roosevelt Island. Other options include the Rock Creek Park trails and the Vermont trail that starts at Roosevelt Island.

The CCT is heavily trafficked by all types a people. I want to state up front that in my two years of riding the CCT the vast majority of the users on the trail are friendly and considerate of others. But you must be on your toes at all times and particularly on weekends whether you are biking, running, or walking. Accidents between cyclists and runners/walkers are unfortunately commonplace. In my opinion most of the accidents occur because bikers and runners/walkers are inconsiderate to each other, people are ignorant of trail etiquette/rules and speed is always a factor in any accident.

The CCT recently came out new updated safety rules. One of new rules is a 15 MPH speed limit for bikers. I think this is worthwhile but I’m not sure how they will enforce it. Two of the rules are issues I had emailed the CCT about in the past; Not using Ipods/MP3 players when you bike/run and not running 3-4 people abreast blocking the trail.

Clearly running with Ipods/MP3 players places bikers and runners/walkers at risk. Today’s bikes are quiet. Runners/walkers collide with cyclists when they not aware that the cyclist is passing them on their left. Listening to music blocks out the sound of the bike approaching and audible warnings from the cyclist.

Running/walking 3 to 4 abreast is just rude and inconsiderate. These people force cyclists and other runners moving at a faster rate of speed to have to move into the opposite lane and into on-coming traffic to pass. This in turn forces the on-coming traffic to have to avoid this potential collision. Blocking the entire lane is in my experience a runner/walker issue as most cyclists traveling at a fast pace ride single file.

A final issue I’d like to address is children/toddlers. Yes, I know the CCT is open for all people of our community to use. But parents:

THE CCT IS NOT THE PLACE TO TEACH CHILDREN TO RIDE A BIKE

THE CCT IS NOT THE PLACE TO TAKE CHILDREN ON A SUNDAY RIDE/STROLL WITH YOU.

The volume of cyclists and the speed makes the CCT inappropriate for these activities. If children can’t ride in a straight line, are scared by being passed and don’t understand the concept of checking behind and around them before changing lanes (riding or walking) you are placing your child and others at significant risk if you take them on the CCT.  See the CCT use survey for detailed information.

Generally speaking if you ride/run/walk with awareness and consideration for the other users the CCT is a wonderful multi-use trail. As I said earlier, consideration is usually the case for people on the CCT. However it only takes one person to place others in dangerous situations or to get tempers flaring.

July 20, 2008 Posted by | social media | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bloggers in North Korea…NOT

I recently visited Global Voices Online to try to get a taste of international blogging.  My assignment was to pick a country that started with the fist letter of my first or last name and check out the blogging going on there.

Korean Peninsula

Korean Peninsula

After looking at the list of available countries I found one I thought would be interesting and that I had an interest in; North Korea.  My first assignment in the Army as a young second lieutenant was the Republic of South Korea.  My experiences there changed my life and my world viewpoint.  I’ve always maintained an interest and followed events in and around the Korean peninsula ever since.

The first thing I realized was that there weren’t any North Korean bloggers.  There are people blogging about North Korea, South Korea and the greater Pacific Rim but no North Korean bloggers.  I guess that this didn’t really surprise me or should it surprise anybody else.  Given North Korea’s secret communist political system I doubt the last thing the government wants is information from the average citizen being broadcast around the world.  However, I can’t imagine that there isn’t somebody secretly blogging from within North Korea defying the government.  If there is I couldn’t find them. If you know of any let me know.

The blogs that I did find covered current events and some long simmering issues. Bloggers are still talking about the Japanese citizens kidnapped by North Korea in the 1970’s and 1980’s and their lack of repatriation.  North Korean nuclear weapons is a on-going topic.  The up-coming Olympics in China are also popular.  A long standing women’s issue, abucted women used as sexual comfort slaves by the Japanese army during World War II had an extensive blog with many uploaded videos about the plight of these women.

Perhaps I should have chosen a country with more activity that would have been easier to blog about.  But from a larger perspective I think the fact that a country has no bloggers in 2008 is a story all by itself much larger than a country that has a million bloggers.

A little side trip:
Many people don’t realize it but the U.S. and North Korea are still technically at war as only an armistice was signed that ended the fighting during the Korean Conflict; not a peace treaty that would have ended the war. (Korean Armistice Agreement) Although the Korean Conflict was started by the north I never understood why a peace treaty was never signed.  I understand that everyone was happy when the armistice ended the fighting and it was time to “cutta” as we used to say in 2nd Infantry Division.  (Cutta is Korean slang for Cutta-chogie; lets get the hell out of here.)  But you would think that some 60 years after the end of the fighting that somebody could have re-visted the armistice and suggested a peace treaty.  The U.S. has had treaties with countries with all kinds of varying forms of government to include communist governments.  Why not North Korea?  Yes I know they’ve burned us on agreements in the past.

I can’t help but think that some (certainly not all) of the international issues with North Korea could have been avoided if an actual peace treaty was signed, even if it was only 20 years ago.  A peace treaty might end some of North Korea’s paranoia about being attacked and allow it to act like a nation state in the global community rather than a rabid dog trying to protect a bone.   I wonder what might be avoided in the future if a peace treaty was signed in the next couple years…

July 10, 2008 Posted by | social media | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Just like fashion, style changes but good writing never goes out of style

Majorman mused in his blog about the writing style of the Economist in the blog post “Is there some new rule that the period…” regarding the placement of periods inside or outside of quotation marks.

If you read a variety of newspapers and magazines you’re sure to run into all kinds of styles of writing that conflict with what you have been taught.    I must have four or five style guides sitting in my office and they are all different.

What to use?  Are you a media type, perhaps you use the Associated Press style guide.  A college student, perhaps MLA, APA or Chicago.  A fan of William Safire; use his style.  The federal government even has its own style guide and many departments have their own style guide within the federal government’s.  In the previous sentence is the correct punctuation federal or Federal?  If you know the answer write it the box below and which style guide you used.

Ultimately I think that language is living entity.  New words are invented every day.  Some thrive and others fall into the trash bin of words quickly. Did you type Internet in 1988?  For some interesting new words or to find out the definition some slang words you don’t know check out the Urban Dictionary.

Just as words change so does how we write and use punctuation.  So my advice is to write and use punctuation as you were taught, wherever you were taught.  When everyone comments about how your prose is old school remember a well written sentence lasts forever.

July 9, 2008 Posted by | social media | Leave a comment

WikiScanner Report: Baltimore Ravens

WikiScanner is a relatively new tool, released in August 2007, that is a database of the millions of anonymous Wikipedia edits and where those edits originated. WikiScanner allows you to see the IP address of who is editing pages of any Wikipedia article. Essentially with WikiScanner you can tell where the IP address of editor is.

Knowing the IP address allows you to have an idea if that glowing/rabid article was written by the manufacturer, author or a disenfranchised psycho. I believe that ultimately WikiScanner will help to improve Wikipedia Articles by increasing the Neutral Point of View of Wikipedia articles. For example if positive remarks about an organization in an article is traced to the organization the article is about then that Wikipedia entry won’t have much merit.

I was thinking about the upcoming NFL season and how my Baltimore Ravens would do, so I thought why not do my Wiki Scanner report on the Ravens. As you might expect, with a national sports team, the Wikipedia Baltimore Ravens article had hundreds of changes. I focused on looking at the three users who combined for 66 edits to Wikipedia’s Ravens article.

Comcast Cable Communications Inc (Huntingtown, Maryland) – 34

Comcast Cable Communications Inc (Arlington, Virginia) – 18

Verizon Internet Services Inc (Baltimore, Maryland) – 14

At the Huntington, Md site where 34 edits were made there are only two listed IP addresses. I’m guessing the same person made all those edits using two different computers. At the Arlington and Baltimore sites there were multiple IPs listed so its unlikely that it the same person as at Huntington.

The vast majority of changes where the type of changes you would expect on a sports team. There were edits to the team’s season/individual statistics, head coaches, players, history etc. The vast majority of the changes to the Ravens site were stright forward. With NFL statistics there isn’t much room for interpretation. It is what it is. You ran for 100 yards or threw 2 touchdown passes no more no less.

Where it gets a little sticky is history sections about the Ravens or predictions about future seasons and the quality of drafts etc. Generally I thought these sections were well balanced. I could see where these users had removed vandalism to the article in these less factual areas. Can you believe somebody would say something bad about the Ravens? Must be those damn shittsburgh stealers fans or the pumpkin heads again!!!! (The pumpkins still haven’t gotten over it but they did steal my favorite xRaven, Jamal Lewis, last year!)

Although there are edits to page from all over the U.S. the vast majority of the changes were all made from the local area here in the MD/VA/DC area. With the NFL increasing its presence in overseas markets I thought I would see some edits from IP addresses outside the U.S. I expected at the least that perhaps some military NFL fans stationed overseas might have made edits. However there no obvious overseas IP addresses.

I did notice that WikiScanner didn’t show any 2008 changes. For example the Ravens hired a new head coach in 2008 and the article has the correct coach and our number 1 draft pick from the April 2008, QB Joe Flacco, is also listed as being on the team roster. I did make an edit myself to the Ravens article but was unable to find it with Wikiscanner. So I’m not sure why recent edits are not showing up because the site seems up to date.

I didn’t find any smoking guns in the Ravens article. Although the editors were most likely Ravens fans it doesn’t appear as though the NFL or the Ravens are trying to manipulate Wikipedia articles about the Ravens to make them positive. There were some vandalism attempts but I guess that any national level sports team with a Wikipedia article may have fans from rival teams try to add negative comments. I wonder what the Red Sox fans try to add to the Yankee’s page and vice versa?

July 6, 2008 Posted by | social media | , | Leave a comment