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'Poor Fact-Checking, Flat-Out Fabrication' Leads to Daily Mail Ban by Wikipedia

© Photo : PixabayWikipedia
Wikipedia - Sputnik International
One of Britain's biggest selling tabloid newspapers has been banned as a "reliable source" by editors of online encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

The Daily Mail in London, edited by Paul Dacre, and its online publication, MailOnline is "generally unreliable, and its use as a reference is to be generally prohibited, especially when other more reliable sources exist," according to a summary discussion posted by Wikipedia.

"As a result, the Daily Mail should not be used for determining notability, nor should it be used as a source in articles," the decision on the site also read.

It's removal as a "reliable source" from Wikipedia is due to its "poor fact-checking, sensationalism, and flat-out fabrication."

Many social media users, especially on Twitter, are enjoying the opportunity to either stick the boot in or mock the tabloid newspaper following the announcement by Wikipedia. Former Prime Minister Tony Blair's spin doctor, Alastair Campbell is no exception. 

Online paper Huffington Post UK has published examples that led to the decision to remove the tabloid from the open source website.

In one instance, the Mail Online published the wrong verdict in the case of Amanda Knox, declaring her as guilty, despite the fact that she was found not guilty. The fake verdict was live on the website for 90 seconds and carried quotes suggesting Knox "looked stunned" by the verdict.

Footballer Paul Pogba was forced to issue a statement on Twitter after the Daily Mail website published a fake article in which he "describes life at Manchester United." Pogba had never agreed to such an interview.

Actor George Clooney issued a statement in 2014, after the tabloid suggested "religious tensions" existed between him and his wife Amal Clooney's mother.

"The Daily Mail has printed a completely fabricated story about my fiancee's mother opposing our marriage for religious reasons, none of the story is factually true," Clooney wrote in USA Today.

© AP Photo / Charles SykesAmal and George Clooney arrive at The Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute benefit gala.
Amal and George Clooney arrive at The Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute benefit gala. - Sputnik International
Amal and George Clooney arrive at The Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute benefit gala.

Wikimedia UK, which trains Wikipedia editors, told The Huffington Post UK that it was a "community decision" to ban the Mail.

"Essentially it's a community decision and a decision which the English Wikipedia editor community has taken and actually this was first discussed as an issue back in 2015," Lucy Crompton-Reid, chief executive of Wikimedia UK said.

"It is the community that's come to a consensus decision that the Daily Mail can't be used as a reliable source on Wikipedia. That will affect some 12,000 links, but obviously they won't be changed overnight," she added.

The ban means editors of the online encyclopedia will be asked to find alternative sources when the Wikipedia entry relates to the newspaper or one of its writers.

Turning to Wikipedia as a source for this story, the latest entry on the online encyclopedia for the Daily Mail says the tabloid: "has been accused of racism, and printing sensationalist and inaccurate scare stories of science and medical research."

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