The Billings Gazette’s Tom Lutey has an interesting story on Montana GOP gubernatorial candidate Rick Hill’s effort to edit his Wikipedia biography. <a href="http://billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/montana/article_a0e011bf-2da8-55d7-93fa-4bfd97cec614.html?oCampaign=hottopics" title="From the Gazette:”>From the Gazette:
Depending on what time viewers read Hill’s Wikipedia biography between June 25 and June 28, his divorce was explained as “Rick divorced his first wife in 1976 and retained custody of his three boys….” Or, “Rick divorced his first wife in 1976 following an affair.”
The latter version was confirmed to reporters for Lee Enterprises, Inc. by Hill’s first wife during an earlier House campaign against Bill Yellowtail in 1996.
Hill’s Wikipedia page has since been locked down and his campaign manager Chuck Denowh acknowledged he had attempted to change it. Hill is by no means the first politician to attempt to change details on the online collaborative encyclopedia.
Wikipedia records indicate current Montana politicians Sens. Max Baucus, Jon Tester, Rep. Rehberg and Brian Schweitzer have biographies that receive minor deletions and insertions on a regular basis.
Montana State University political science professor David Parker offers sound advice in the story: “I wonder why candidates ever bother with Wikipedia info. I would just ignore it.”
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