Crypto bros misunderstand how Wikipedia editing works

Crypto bros have branded Wikipedia’s Solana coverage ‘absolute garbage’ and have voiced concerns about Web3 is Going Just Great creator Molly White’s role in editing online articles.

Ethereum researcher Emmanuel Awosika took issue yesterday with Wikipedia’s coverage of the crypto industry on X (formerly Twitter), claiming “Solana manlets are probably the worst hit here.”

“No way I’d be touching [Solana] if Wikipedia was my first source of information (Ethereum, surprisingly, had better coverage). Someone needs to edit that page and spend less time on Twitter ads.”

Awosika also brought up White’s potential involvement in editing crypto-related articles for Wikipedia and her influence on Wikipedia’s decision to reject cryptocurrency donations. “Do non-profits like Wikimedia have a COI policy, too,” he asked.

According to her Wikipedia bio, White specializes in editing articles on political extremism and groups in the manosphere and does not focus on crypto. White recently contributed to a Wikipedia entry on American deathcore band Left to Suffer and the 2023 Titan submersible incident.

Awosika then added, “People have complained about Wikipedia’s coverage of the crypto industry, but I never grasped the problem until someone made a ‘Wikipedia Is Going Great’ joke referring to Molly’s potential involvement.”

Molly’s post calling out Awosika’s claims.

In her defense, White noted that her ‘potential involvement’ in the editing of the Solana Wikipedia page amounted to just one grammatical edit — correcting the miscapitalization of ‘non-fungible-token.’ 

She also refuted Awosika’s claim that her Wikipedia editing was ‘news,’ noting that she lists herself as a ‘Wikipedian’ (a volunteer separate from the Wikimedia Foundation that helps edit pages) in her bio.

Awosika tried to claim that Wikipedia has a ‘clear anti-crypto stance,’ highlighting its refusal to accept crypto donations and an alleged history of failing to report on crypto-related subjects. 

White noted, “The Wikimedia foundation doesn’t accept donations of livestock either but somehow we manage to write articles on cows just fine.”

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Awosika also shared images of Wikipedia’s Solana page that detail lawsuits, outages, and hacks related to the platform and its suffering due to FTX. He asked White, “Surely, there’s more to a protocol like Solana than just lawsuits, token price crashes, and outages?”

White responded, “I think that most crypto projects (even large ones like Solana) is very limited to industry publications, which generally don’t pass the bar for reliable sourcing on Wikipedia.”

She added, “Wikipedia articles are based on what reliable, secondary sources have to say about a topic, not what a topic has to say about itself.”

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Edit 15:35 UTC, May 21: Changed headline from ‘Crypto bros upset over Wikipedia’s ‘garbage’ Solana coverage.’

Update May 21, 16:36 UTC: Updated the article to include Molly White’s work as a voluntary Wikipedia editor and her editing specialties.