Another fake user appeared on Dr. Kendrick’s blog January 7, 2019.
January 7, 2019 at 7:59 pm
Abd, the person you claim Skeptic from Britain is, is the wrong person. Elsewhere, he came forward as “[redacted, three initials]”. I spoke to this person on Wikipedia briefly. I do not know him but he has left Wikipedia for good.
The testimony of those who only comment anonymously is worthless, unless it can be independently verified. Skeptic from Britain did not “come forward as “[redacted].” There is no “for good” in the leaving. SfB retired, but a certain “Wikipedia astronomer” left the same way, and came back. SfB was not blocked. One of the common behaviors of Darryl L. Smith, though, is, for whatever reason, a parting retirement message. I’ve seen it dozens of times. In this case, the last post implied he had been outed elsewhere, by his real name. The only name that I could find was the full name of “[redacted].” So SfB was claiming that he was had been outed as [redacted], creating a red herring. But [redacted] has another Wikipedia account and was active after SfB “retired” and is not blocked or retired. This user wants his name not to be bandied about, or I’d provide links. SfB knows who he is, and almost certainly created the references on other sites, including the Kendrick blog.
Darryl Smith creates a high density of lies. This is not mere disagreement, it is direct and willful deception and misdirection, intentionally misleading readers, and often accompanied by references to evidence that, if read incautiously, sometimes reinforce the false impressions he’s seeking to establish. To respond to this with real evidence takes time and requires many more words than the original mud-tossing. This comment is a very good example of what he does, and it is so blatant that I have a level of suspicion that it is, itself, an impersonation. He has many enemies and there could be some who would be motivated to expose him like this. But, more likely, it’s simply him.
I’m a skeptic and maintain many alternate “explanations” of events without forming fixed beliefs about them. I write what I have witnessed and my hypotheses and conclusions, and always invite correction and especially the provision of more evidence. The book is not closed until the book is closed.
It is not possible to “prove” who this person is beyond doubt.
That makes assumptions that, if this were not SfB, would involve knowledge he could not have. I have been creating spreadsheets with edit records. One for the accounts I have suspected of being Darryl L. Smith currently has over 25,000 records, accumulated over about seven years, covering 21 accounts with significant edit histories. There are many accounts checkuser-identified on Wikipedia with “Anglo Pyramidologist” that I have not yet added to that. As well, AP was claimed, early on, to be two brothers, and the “duck test” — see below — confirms two distinct sets of interests.
Darryl has been concerned with the paranormal, parapsychology, and other standard “debunker” obsessions (which can include alleged fringe science or anything not mainstream or believed to be such by him and pseudoskeptics), and has claimed to have support from a major “skeptical organization.”
Oliver, the twin brother, has focused more on fascism, racism, and it is alleged, with evidence, that he was racist and fascist himself, and went through a change of mind. Or found that he could be a bigger bully by working with others. He is also a student of classics, with a special interest in Atlantis. The original Anglo Pyramidologist account was him. I now have a visual guide to the history of these users, the patterns are quite remarkable.
“Beyond doubt” is a strong standard. At law, in criminal trials, the standard is “beyond a reasonable doubt.” And in civil cases (including actions for defamation), the standard is “the preponderance of evidence,” as assessed by a judge or jury, reviewing it and the arguments. “Beyond doubt” is for fanatics.
I suspect I have enough to accomplish most of what could be necessary in a trial. Legal process is expensive, and it is not likely that either Smith brother has assets worth going after. However, people file lawsuits for other reasons. The information I have is that Oliver has already been sued. Oliver was more visible and more blatant. But Oliver has also outed his brother.
And both have claimed “there is no evidence.”
My strongest evidence, personally, was that when I came across impersonations-to-defame on Wikipedia, and I confronted them, and they were confirmed by steward checkuser, and when I started to look at the problem, documenting what had happened from edit records, I was attacked, severely. What I had was little more than what is on Wikipedia as the sock puppet investigation case for Anglo Pyramidologist, it simply added the new editing and then the attacks on me. One of these accounts, checkuser-identified as the same user as the others, threatened me with retaliation, that all my work would be deleted, etc. , and surely this wasn’t worth that much damage, why don’t I just forget about it?
That is when I knew that I was definitely onto something worth looking at. The problem was not just these two brothers. The problem was a system that they had learned to manipulate. And then they proceeded to demonstrate exactly that. The retaliation arrived. So I should think this was just coincidence?
I Google searched his username and many different websites say it is someone different. Even some, claiming it is you.
Indeed. Here is what I find, googling Skeptic from Britain. 1900 results. Top results:
- Zoe Harcombe (Twitter) . See the new RationalWiki article, created by “John66,” (contributions) who is obviously SfB.
- Ivor Cummins (Twitter). No conclusions about identity.
- Marika Sboros. See the new RW article, created by John66.
- alliance for natural health. “organized skeptic groups,” which definitely exist. A user “RationalWiki fan” just commented on Kendrick’s blog that RationalWiki is financially supported by such groups. The “web site,” however, has no identity claim. There is, however, a comment:
22 December 2018 at 3:02 am
Skeptic from Britain is Abd ul-Rahman Lomax. He has a history of trolling wikis and attacking people with different points of view. He has closed his account so he will no longer be active on Wikipedia.
The user behind SfB has many blocked accounts on Wikipedia, but SfB was not blocked. The claim is that he was outed. Where? And why would he continue editing the same way on RationalWiki, if he’s concerned about being outed? Fact is: given what he was doing, it was quite likely he’d eventually have been discovered. In this case, though, I was only alerted to SfB when Oliver Smith, on Encyclopedia Dramatica, claimed I was him. Definitely caused me to look. So why did Oliver effectively out his brother, by accusing the one person most likely to recognize him?
Let’s say that Oliver is not particularly sane. Much of his behavior has made no sense, creating messes for his brother to clean up, which then creates even more evidence, etc.
The RationalWiki article on me was started by Marky (Darryl L. Smith) (contributions), as his first edits there, and was clear retaliation for my documentation of his antics on WMF wikis, as he had threatened. At the time, I was documenting all “Anglo Pyramidologist” socks, and had not yet confirmed what was widespread by then among those who follow such things: knowledge that this was either one person (Oliver D. Smith) or two (i.e., also Darryl). RationalWiki, unfortunately, is treated by some as if reliable. It is radically unreliable, it was basically a running joke wiki for liberal refugees from Conservapedia, but it became a home for certain trolls. It is very much not neutral. It is sometimes treated as reliable, even by newspapers which, to Oliver’s glee, have on occasion reprinted his accusations from there. Some reporters are not careful, and if it sounds juicy and a quick glance makes it seem true ….
Encyclopedia Dramatica, as the name implies, is also a joke wiki, designed for “lulz,” i.e., entertainment. I am not sure that Darryl has ever edited ED, but his brother has many accounts blocked there. The article on me there was created by MrStrong, admittedly Oliver D. Smith, known as such on ED. MrStrong uploaded this image:
This appears to be a photo of Dr. Malcolm Kendrick, with a photo of me photoshopped onto it. They love this stuff on ED. However, the claim about me being SfB, and other blatantly absurd claims, were removed from that article January 5.
So are there other “sites” claiming I was SfB? Here is what I found:
- James, comment on Kendrick’s blog, December 21, 2018, the same as he posted a day later, shown above.
- This comment, also on Kendrick’s blog, is remarkable:
Guy Chapman is well-known as the Wikipedia administrator who signs “Guy,” with the account name “JzG.” Chapman very possibly does know who the real SfB would be, and knows that it’s not [redacted]. However, this is very unlikely to actually be Guy Chapman. Guy would not put up that contributions link that does not show what he claims. I was never accused of impersonation, on Wikipedia or elsewhere, until the Smith brothers started up on it in mid-2018, creating impersonation accounts or red herrings and then claiming it was me.
The RationalWiki article no longer supports the impersonation claim. That he would cite that article is, again, evidence this is, itself, an impersonation. Wait! Was SfB [redacted] or me? It doesn’t matter, the Smiths’ goal is to create as much smoke and confusion as possible.
Kendrick did not “cite [redacted],” not that I have seen. He took down links to [redacted] from his blog. Some wrote comments based on the claims of trolls that [redacted] was a “fanatic vegan”. The real [redacted] is not vegan, and the claim he was SfB was preposterous, the situation was the opposite, and he was attacked by SfB, planting “evidence” on Wikipedia supposedly admitting he’d been doxxed, precisely because of that. In fact, SfB had not been doxxed, except by his own sock puppets, with false information.
A common motive of the Smith brothers is to cause other groups to fight each other.
(I see other trolling comments on Dr. Kendrick’s blog, purporting to be from Wikipedia editors: Alexbrn, Roxy the dog. These are very unlikely to be from the real account holders, Alexbrn (contributions) and Roxy the dog (contributions) . The goal would be standard trolling: get people riled up. Few experienced Wikipedia users will comment on blogs with their real Wikipedia user name, defiantly, like this.
- [Reddit user deleted] Notice the next comment apparently outs the Reddit user as Oliver D. Smith. A fuller discussion. (This could be Oliver or Darryl.)
- That discussion mentions a twitter comment by AmandaZZ100. She mentions me, with “if.” She is incorrect, she has not been banned from her talk page. Obviously.
I had noticed the block she mentions, and commented on it on the Skeptic from Britain page, asking her to contact me, because something is very strange about that affair. She has not contacted me.
Amandazz100 appealed the block, but was completely clueless how to do so effectively. I’ve seen this thousands of times. When blocked, less is more, you are lucky to get an administrator to read one sentence, much less a number of screens full of text.
I highly recommend, again, that Amanda contact me. The block was a checkuser block. Does Amanda understand what that was? If she continues to add lots of commentary on her user talk page, her access to it is also likely to be blocked, indeed. Quick advice: do not appeal again until you know what you are doing. Get help. There are effective ways to do this and I was a professional for a time advising users. Yes. $50 per hour. Satisfied users, and totally legal, by the way, not a violation of policy. But a little advice for Amanda, if she wants it, pro bono.
She was not totally blocked, because, as the alleged “sock master,” she would be allowed to appeal. She probably believes, this is common with naive users, that she should deny having used more than one account. That is not how to get unblocked, never claim that a mistake was made, unless you know exactlyw what you are dealing with.
How to get unblocked, the standard way, would be to assure administrators that there will be no more problems, which generally involves showing an understanding of the alleged violation. “I didn’t do it,” by itself, shows no such understanding.
(If she did not actually sock, that’s more difficult, actually. But one step at a time. She needs advice from someone who would understand what she did, and what she didn’t do, and the context and how administrators will respond. There was an initiative on Wikipedia at one time to provide Advocates for people getting into conflict. It was killed, as have been many initiatives that would level the playing field.)
There are much more complex issues here, not the least of which is that a real, full name has been identified, by this edit. Was that her? It does appear to be a real name, and it cites an actual book, and I first encountered the Smith brothers because they did that with a user, created red flag disruptive accounts. She was not blocked, so why would she create another account with her real full name?
From my experience, I suspect she did not. Rather, the person’s actual account was Astanton, as shown in the tweet. This smells very much like a Smith action. On the face, it is much less likely to be Amandazz100, also a real person, from her long-established Twitter account.
So, then, what did the checkuser actually see? They don’t say. There are other checkusers, however, and they are generally honest, I’ve seen very, very few exceptions over the years. If AmandaZZ100 did not create that account, who did? From the behavioral evidence, I would certainly suspect Darryl Smith, who would be, at this point, Skeptic from Britain (or renamed). I had thought that AmandaZZ might be Stanton. Now, I think not. This would still be within the data retention period for checkuser evidence. Complaining on Twitter about it will accomplish nothing.
I see no violated warning. I see no checkuser request. It used to be that checkusers would not block users on their own initiative, and users would not be blocked before violated warnings. Gradually, Wikipedia devolves.
The checkuser’s actions included protecting an article Amanda had edited. There was an edit by “The Amanda ZZ”, and later, she admitted this was her, as an accident. Yet the edit has been hidden, which is normally not done unless it contains sensitive information, such as outing. The edit was reverted by an IP, calling this a sock of “Amandazz100,” which was obvious obvious, and the IP was part of a range blocked by a another checkuser a few days later for long term abuse (which could indicate AP editing). That IP checks out to a mobile service provider, Telephonica O2 UK, geolocation matching where the Smiths have often edited from.
The edit being hidden, however, required an administrator. On the face, this violated policy (no reason was given). However, policy violations are common, and this might or might not have been harmless.
Other accounts that were blocked had names used by apparent Smith socks to comment on blogs.
This is how it looks to me, first-pass, as one possibility. Amanda believed that Wikipedia was being manipulated by anonymous users with a nefarious agenda. So she reacted with what is not unusual, all’s fair in love and war, right? She created some accounts, not realizing how easily they could be detected if suspected. She was not aware that she was up against a highly experienced faction that includes some administrators. Then, when caught, she lied about it.
Or not. Alternate explanations are possible, and I’d be happy to hear her account. I briefly suspected when I first saw her Wikipedia comments, that she was another Smith troll. But she is apparently a real person (that Twitter account is not new) and definitely not a Smith brother.
(I have never before seen a checkuser incorrectly associate accounts like that, unless they were geographically associated. It could happen, that’s all. Was he careful?)
Back to to “Wikipedia user”:
I am sure Dr. Kendrick is tired of this business, but you should stop spamming forums claiming you know who SFB is. There is no conclusive proof.
Dr. Kendrick can easily ask me to stop, he has my email address. Anonymous trolls have no credibility to those with experience.
There is very strong evidence, much of which I have not yet shown, but I will show it to anyone, other than the Smith brothers, with a need to know. I would also, of course, show it to their attorneys if that ever becomes necessary. Oliver has been effectively daring me to sue. Someone else has recently done that, sued him, and it was richly deserved. I still might file. It’s a PITA, much more work than just documenting this stuff.
It is not possible to identify real life individuals based on anonymous Wikipedia accounts.
It is possible. There is an issue of the level of evidence. There are two kinds of identification, one is identification of accounts with edit histories, based on three considerations:
- Content similarity, sometimes definitive idiosyncracies. This is called the “duck test” on Wikipedia.
- Checkuser evidence, or, similar, from anyone with raw site log access. This can point to physical location and can connect accounts (this is commonly used on Wikipedia).
- Edit timing, and details about this I’m not prepared to reveal yet, because there are active AP accounts. Suffice it to say that concealing identity of accounts, when more than one account is active at a time, with substantial numbers of edits, is very difficult, if anyone looks carefully.Further, if accounts are not active at the same time, but are active in distinct periods, this can also create evidence that they are not independent. Details matter. I have done control comparisons with an active user not suspected of being a Smith sock (in spite of claims that I or others were accusing all RationalWiki or all skeptics of being Smith brothers, far from it) that show what independent users look like. This does not resemble, at all, the edit history of the Smith accounts, considered collectively.
Then, finding that multiple accounts are the same person, the accounts may leave many clues about the person’s real-life identity. If these are consistent, over years, certainty can become high. One of the brothers, Oliver, has bragged about his work, and he wrote to me from a confirmed email address, used for his primary scholarly interest (he was published under peer review on Atlantis.) So that ID is definite. Then he has a brother, and he’s acknowledged that and has acknowledged that his brother has been doxxed (including by me). But, of course, he could be lying. But then, I have seen editing collision, which would be extremely difficult to accomplish, and very unlikely to have been faked (it’s possible! I did this on Wikipedia as a test, to see how rapidly I could create edits. Several per minute was easy. But doing this in context, busy working on articles, not just running a test? And there are still signals I’m not talking about yet. When I was a general Wikipedia user, I was involved with identifying disruptive socks, so this is old stuff for me.
This is a very dangerous business, doxing.
Sure. I’m a journalist, and reporting on things like this is my business, and, yes, it is dangerous. Journalists are sometimes assassinated. Or sued. I’m a real person (and many details about me have been doxxed by the Smiths). I am legally responsible for what I write, my reputation depends on probity. I attempt to avoid errors, but make some anyway, and so I am obligated to correct them. When the early AP documentation pages were called “lies” by Smith socks, I asked for specific incorrect statements. None were provided. What they want is for casual readers to think this is just an ordinary “he said, she said” argument.
No, this is my attempt at accurate reporting, up against users who deliberately lie and obfuscate, who have been confirmed by WMF stewards to impersonate to defame and cause harm. When their lies are exposed, the accounts simply disappear. Then new accounts appear telling the same stories.
You should not accuse real life names without evidence. All of your evidence is circumstantial. There is no robust evidence who that account belongs to. It could be yourself.
I did not accuse “real life names” without evidence, strong enough to report. All this was documented as the evidence was found. I have redacted some of it, because it also showed the names of other family members. I did not invent this evidence, nor did I depend on it exclusively, but what it showed was residence location, the names and ages of the twin brothers, and one was Oliver D. Smith, and Darryl L. Smith was shown as his brother. It was apparently from a public database, and I confirmed parts of it directly.
Then Oliver D. Smith has clearly been identified as the real person behind various accounts, and on this basis he has been served process. There is one question remaining: the brother. Oliver has, at various times, identified another user as his brother. (Many of these edits have been revision-deleted, but were archived.)
Then the edit histories of the other AP accounts, those interested in debunking, can be compared, and the evidence is striking. I have found, so far, two active accounts, so far not publicly outed as AP or a Smith brother. The patterns are different, indicating, possibly, more sophisticated evasion of detection. I’m still studying all this and will be applying more sophisticated tools. There are still gaps in the history, and gradually evidence is appearing to fill them in.
Never say that it is impossible to uncover the truth.
How could one possibly know this? This is what frauds and felons claim: “You have no proof.” It is almost as if they were to say, “I covered it all up, you won’t be able to prove that I did it. And nobody cares, you fool!”
(A troll is someone who makes comments to create emotional reactions, like rage.)
And, about the allegation that I am SfB, I would spend many hundreds of hours, promoting views on Wikipedia that are anathema to me? For what purpose? To make a Smith brother look bad? There are far easier ways that would not involved the insane level of work. Here is the edit timing of Skeptic from Britain, showing 4768 edits, over almost a year, plotted from his contribution record:
There are visible gaps, days when SfB did not edit. Other days, obsessed, he was editing perhaps round-the-clock. He had other suspected accounts. They dovetail with the SfB edits. There are still blanks, where no known account was editing, but this may merely indicate that he has “good hand accounts” that don’t create such obvious controversy and have not been detected. I have found two such, apparently, with high edit counts, for a long time and they edit in the open periods. I’m still studying them, I am not ready to announce. Other people are sending me tips, anonymously. I will not publish them without confirmation.
You can run, but you can’t hide from reality.
Darryl Smith has claimed (on RationalWiki) to be in email communication with me. He was probably lying, but his brother definitely was. It has been claimed (including by Oliver) that the “twin brother” story was an invention to attempt to avoid being blocked on Wikipedia, years ago. The patterns of editing I have seen so far tend to contradict this. There are two people involved, almost certainly. However, “collisions,” when two accounts were editing busily at the same time, are oddly rare. I’ve only found one example in about five years examined so far. However, large numbers of trolling accounts (many hundreds, maybe thousands), with few or no edits, were created, and I have not yet studied them. Oliver claimed that these were his brother, but then he claimed it was all him. The truth will out, it’s merely a matter of patience.
That one example confirmed what I had come to trust as real: the two brothers. But it’s only one example, and it would be possible to create that appearance. (Much harder to create consistent behavior going back more than seven years!) To be sure, I need more powerful evidence, and I’ll get it. If the real Darryl Smith is being libeled, I’m a real person and it is easy to contact me. For example, I see all comments on pages on this blog. That is how anonymous tips are being given to me.
You were globally banned on Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Contributions/abd
Not exactly false, but misleading. I was “community banned” on Wikipedia in 2011, and have not edited Wikipedia since then (with one accidental and inconsequential exception, not detected.). Then, that contribution page notes that the account is globally locked, an “Office ban.” There was no warning, no explanation, and no appeal, and that was February 24, 2018. The Smith brothers bragged that they had caused this, Oliver published the response he got from the Office, and the action demonstrates that the Office does not carefully investigate, nor do they consider balance, that complainants might have axes to grind and might present misleading evidence. They actually globally banned another person who did not even have an account, he was a journalist, investigating Wikipedia. “Jake Christie of Southern California.”
A google search for your name Abd Lomax says you are known “cyber harasser” and “internet troll”. Your own reputation appears to be rock-bottom.
The Smith brothers have repeated this in many places. I’ve been active on-line since the 1980s (I was a moderator on the W.E.L.L.) , and have only rarely been banned. I have confronted administrative abuse in many places (successfully on Wikipedia, but then, successfully confront administrators there, what happens? Do you think they protect whistle-blowers? Guess again! Troublemakers!) My reputation is enough to raise funding for my expenses. There has been possible harm from the Smith activity, and that’s a legal issue. But I’m 74, and I know I am going to die. I’m not easily intimidated.
So, here, a Smith brother (almost certainly) is pointing to “knowledge” that he created as if proof of something. And he is communicating with me using Kendrick’s blog, and spamming the pages he created. He has done this with many people. Googling from England, you might not find much, because Oliver Smith has filed Google complaints to get results removed from search engines. I’ve documented these elsewhere. He’s hiding, and at the same time, libelling others. He has thousands of blocked accounts, he will be blocked on sight on Wikipedia, if anyone identifies him, but few are watching, and he blends in with the “skeptical faction,” some cheer him on and lament when his socks are identified and blocked.
There are several websites on the internet that claim you own the SFB Wikipedia account. I find it suspicious you have written over 200,000 words about it on your website (?). That is not normal behavior. It is obsessional.
An anonymous user making a comment on a web site is not the site making a claim. What “Wikipedia user” is referring to is a handful of comments, and the closest to a “web site” making a claim is Encyclopedia Dramatica. Where that claim was placed by Oliver D. Smith (as MrStrong) and then removed by a user who knows the history of this troll very well.
As to “over 200,000 words,” he is vastly exaggerating, following a long-term pattern of Smith brothers about the blog (only a small part of my work there has anything to do with the Smiths.) There might be that may words in all the pages relating to the AP socks. But they include lengthy compilations of evidence. I happen to believe in evidence as being far better than mere accusations.
I have written a lot about Anglo Pyramidologist socks and related issues! About SFB there is one page, Skeptic from Britain, 11,400 words at present. That page has three subpages:
- skeptic-in-user-name/ 1723 words written because some had claimed Brits don’t spell that way. False.
- comments-from-the-target i.e., “XXX” This is the person called [redacted] by this troll above. 3002 words.
- and this page is 5978 words and did not exist when this troll posted.
But what is an order of magnitude among friends?
Dr. Kendrick responded, so some comments on that:
Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author
January 8, 2019 at 9:45 am
Thank you wikipedia user. I think the central problem here is that no-one knows who anyone is, for sure, and hides.
That’s not true, Dr. Kendrick. “For sure” is two very large words, but we can know with high probability, even certainty. As an example, I’m quite sure that the author of this comment is Dr. Kendrick. That could be false, because the good doctor may have allowed someone else to edit his blog, or it may have been hacked. But there is no reason to suspect that. So I’m “sure,” unless other evidence appears.
As well, Dr. Kendrick and others can be sure that I am Abd ul-Rahman Lomax, and that my birth name differs from that. This information is not only on the pages created by the Smith brothers, but it’s public record, in many places. I’ve been published under peer review, which, by itself, doesn’t prove identity, but, again, “for sure” demands too much. Gary Taubes wrote Good Calories, Bad Calories, etc.
And Oliver D. Smith is very clearly identified. Can we be absolutely sure that every account claiming to be him is actually him? No, of course not. But we don’t need absolute certainty, no journalist needs that, it is enough to reasonably confirm what is written, and if it is wrong, it can be corrected. And then there is evidence that leads to Darryl. And the more this is pointed out, the more squeaking we hear. Oliver claims, brilliantly, that I have “doxxed his family,” thus confirming it. Again, if each piece of evidence was all that there is, it could be misleading. One of the Oliver socks was RW user Schizophrenic. Long before I knew about the Smiths, long before they had ever mentioned me, that user was active. Later, a Smith sock claimed that I was Schizophrenic.
The goal is to create confusion. How not to be confused? It’s actually easy. We are only confused when we try to decide to believe or not believe something, when there is inadequate evidence. The path forward is simply to observe, without drawing conclusions, until the matter becomes clear.
Liars want us to believe that it’s all relative, a matter of whom to believe. Really, should I believe you, Dr. Kendrick, or the crap SFB wrote about you on Wikipedia or RationalWiki? My answer is simple:
I believe nothing, not even that I’m real. But I routinely trust many things, and when someone shows, over and over, that they care about reality, rather than mere opinion, I tend to trust what they write and state. That’s all rebuttable, and people who were once probative sometimes lose it. I reserve full trust for reality itself, not anyone’s opinion about it, including my own. I was not familiar with your writing, Dr. Kendrick, before this incident. Pleased to meet you, you are one of the best speakers on your topic, on the planet.
Truth will prevail, I trust that, everywhere.
Clearly, I do not. My identity is absolutely open.
You don’t know who Skeptic from Britain is, because you have not studied the matter, and studying it adequately could take you months, even if the trail has been blazed, as it has been. You have much better things to do with your time. I have worked on a number of what I call “trillion dollar issues.” This Smith crap is not one of them, but diet, obesity, and heart disease could qualify. I only work on this particular Smith issue because I ended up with unusual knowledge (because I was defending academic freedom on Wikiversity, attacked by the Smiths and friends), and when I have unusual knowledge, I have some level of obligation to share it. It’s actually a religious issue.
Perhaps Wikipedia should demand that everyone’s identities are also open and known – and can be checked in some way.
Probably not for everyone. Rather, Wikipedia made a tactical error at the beginning. They wanted people to be able to edit without delay, to make it easy and quick, and that was a major part of how and why Wikipedia grew so rapidly. That required editing without accounts, “anonymous editing.” Wikipedia also came to be based on “reliable source,” which is very much not anonymous. It’s published, with known and responsible publishers. However, who decides what information to maintain on Wikipedia and what to remove? The wiki software keeps everything, every edit, by default. Except what is removed (“deleted”) by administrators — and it is still there, visible to administrators. The early community decided that administrators could also be anonymous, and that is where they lost the possibility of becoming reliable, at least that’s part of it. Wikipedia also disrespected traditional encyclopedias, and avoided the creation of reliable decision-making structures, thus no individual is responsible for bias maintained in articles, it’s fuzzy and vague. Thus what created relative reliability in published encyclopedias, personal and corporate responsibility, was abandoned.
The decision to delete your article was made by a highly biased administrator, JzG (Guy Chapman, signs as “Guy”), who is also, almost certainly, one of those who complained about me, because I had successfully created an Arbitration Committee case that reprimanded him for some of his obviously biased actions. However, his deletion decision in this case was reasonable (because of inadequate sources found, per policy), and actually better than keeping the article, which would then have become, with the power of the skeptical faction, a coat-rack for whatever criticism they could dig up in “reliable sources,” and they will, for example, treat the Skeptical Inquirer as a reliable source, and, of course, every offended “nutritionist” who has a blog will be cited, even though that violates policy. At this point, Dr. Kendrick, you are better off not having an article on Wikipedia.
You say that doxing is a dangerous business? Why? What dangers are there. That you can be attacked – on line. Well, welcome to my world. If you cannot cope with being attacked – on line – then do not attack others. Equally do not hide, and do not say anything to anyone else on-line that you would not say to their face.
The Smith brothers are far removed from that world-view, they have been voluminously and vociferously attacking others for many years. They attack, energetically, anyone who protests. Their goal is defamation, and they use and abuse Wikipedia and RationalWiki and other sites as attack platforms, hence the article creations by John66 on RW are only the most recent examples. There are claims that they have been supported by “a major skeptical organization.” You can find Susan Gerbic’s Guerilla Skeptics on Wikipedia as an example. Wikipedia has blocked and banned many users for doing less than her to promote a particular bias, but GSOW is probably not a funding source. It’s more likely to be the James Randi Educational Foundation, and a connection would be through Tim Farley. I have no evidence that Farley knows what the Smiths have been doing, but when Oliver Smith “confessed” that he had lied about his brother, he included that he had lied to Farley. About what?
I can cope with being attacked. What I find difficult is that anonymous people feel that they can rip your reputation apart and are allowed to hide. My raionalwiki entry, for example is, libellous. Will I get a lawyer and go for damages? I am tempted. If only to do my bit to reduce this nasty, anonymous, behaviour. Nasty anonymous behaviour that Wikipedia appears to think is perfectly acceptable.
I’m willing to discuss any of this with lawyers. Wikipedia does not necessarily “think” that the behavior was acceptable. Wikipedia does not “think.” (RationalWiki is not connected with Wikipedia, though David Gerard used to be a prominent Wikipedian. On RationalWiki, one can see how some of these people actually thing, they will say things that they would never say on Wikipedia.)
Rather, few who cared, and who knew enough about Wikipedia to be effective, cared enough to complain and act. The obnoxious behavior of Skeptic from Britain on Wikipedia is more or less common. Once upon a time, he’d have been confronted, but those who used to do that have largely burned out. if not actually banned. It is difficult and there is a faction that includes administrators who will interdict the efforts, and who just may harass those who complain in return. There is no protection for whistleblowers, I and many others proved that long ago.[redacted] is still being mentioned. SfB claimed, in his last post and possibly in others than he had been outed by his real name. Until I appeared, after this, Darryl had not been mentioned by anyone as a possibility, even though many AP socks have been identified and blocked with similar agendas. [redacted] had been mentioned on block and similar comments, with zero evidence provided.
Update January 9, 2019
Comments continued from trolls.
Rationalwiki fan January 8, 2019 at 5:53 pm
It is not possible to sue the Rationalwiki Foundation for having an article on Kendrick. Many people have tried and failed. For example a well known creationist’s lawsuit failed, he tried to sue the RW Foundation for $1 million but ended up embarrassing himself.
Typical for pseudoskeptics. They inflate anecdotes into an “impossibility proof.” Notice: zero information allowing the story to be verified. Also typical for Smith trolling. Tim Farley has a whole web site of anecdotes, showing damage or losses from “not using critical thinking,” which usually means following something not mainstream. Yes, doing something stupid can cause harm, but how does this compare to the harm of blindly following the “mainstream”? A collection of negative outcomes cherry-picked from a vast universe of human experience is not evidence that any modality is junk or woo, because there are also negative outcomes from mainstream practices.
First of all, filing a lawsuit is not the first action to be taken. That would be (1) using standard procedures to fix the problem directly; after all, RationalWiki is a wiki and, on the face, anyone can edit it. And/or: (2) sending a demand letter. Such letters from lawyers are particularly impressive, unless they choose to fight. Because fighting will cost them money, they may choose otherwise and taking down an article costs them little. They have done it. Only if (1) and (2) fail would one resort to (3) filing a lawsuit (assuming one cannot obtain criminal prosecution, which is possible for the U.K.)
Every other filed lawsuit has been dropped or thrown out of court.
No list, no reference to a list, rather we have an anonymous troll asserting a very difficult to verify fact. For starters, how many complaints were settled before a suit was filed? Then, how many were settled after filing? Without evidence, I have no idea, except that there have been article take-downs, where ordinary RW users were puzzled. The RationalMedia Foundation, in its fundraising, has used the need to defend themselves legally as a reason to send them money.
David Gerard a skeptical Wikipedia user from the UK is one of their main trustees. https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/User:David_Gerard
The website is hosted from America so it is under free-speech laws. It is not possible to sue a website that calls someone a crank, crackpot, quack or food-woo promoter. This is within the realm of free-speech.
This is roughly true, for those terms are vague. However, this would be U.S. law. Both Dr. Kendrick and David Gerard are in the U.K., and I’m not sure Gerard will be thrilled by this defiant comment, if he sees it. The legal issues could be complex, and precedent not clear. As well, the author of the RW article on Kendrick is obviously Skeptic from Britain, again a U.K. resident, defaming Dr. Kendrick. Not smart, I’d say, but these trolls have never won awards for their intelligence. Oliver D. Smith is being sued for his claims about Emil Kirkegaard, which were clearly defamatory. I don’t think that suit is likely to be thrown out, and Smith, it seems, is about to get an education of what can happen when you act like a teenage smart ass bully while actually being of age.
You will see their board of trustees here, and legal terms. Please see, https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/RationalWiki:RationalMedia_Foundation
RW are financially supported and backed by several skeptic organizations who give them donations. Their Google trafficking is very high. If Kendrick does choose to try and cause trouble for RW, it will back-fire. Every person that has ever tried has failed. There is a reason for this.
When observers have noticed evidence for such funding, it has been called, by the Smith brothers and others, a “conspiracy theory” promoted only by “cranks,” quacks,” and “trolls.” When I have written what has become obvious on my blog, I’ve been accused by the Smiths of abusing Google to defame them. However, it’s long been clear, they have, for years, used Google to harass and intimidate. The Kendrick article was just created (December 30) by the same user who called Kendrick a “fringe figure” in his nomination of the Wikipedia article for deletion. It is on the first page of Google hits when I search for Malcolm Kendrick, out of 8 million hits (70,000 hits if I put quotes around the name). Dr. Kendrick’s blog is above that. RW does get high and fast Google ranking, and this has caused harm to Smith targets.
The U.S. “service provider” exemption from libel claims for content provided by users does not protect the Foundation from claims for continued libel after a takedown notice. Little of this has been tested in U.S. courts, but that exemption clearly does not protect the Foundation in the U.K. (I am not sure about U.K. officers of the Foundation), and it also does not protect users who defame from locations within the U.K.
In any case, this troll probably was referring to this case (from the RW article):
Kent_E._Hovind_v._RationalMedia_Foundation. That is an incorrect title. (The defendant was RationalWiki Foundation, the former name.) This was a pro se filing, by Mr. Hovind, who was, at the time, incarcerated. It was dismissed without prejudice, December 18,, 2015, for failure to properly prosecute the case. In other words, this result is legally meaningless, and that kind of meaningless argument is typical for the Smith brothers.
This year, we had a record breaking 33 lawsuit threats, 6 death threats, and 2 cease and desist letters. This is cause for celebration! Why would I say this? It is because we work! These lawsuits are coming from people who do real world harm. Whether someone who sells stickers to cure cancer or peddles doomsday predictions for attention while harassing scientists and calling for insurrection, there is real potential for harm.
So an exciting year? 39 meaningless comments from trolls (or others, offended article targets) and two cease and desist letters, which would be a necessary prelude to a lawsuit. No actual lawsuits, apparently. No clue as to how they responded to the letters. As I’ve mentioned they have taken pages down, without explanation. I’ll see if I can find such a notice, it said that the page was not to be restored. If they took down the two offending articles, it cost them practically nothing. They ignored the 39 “threats,” as I would expect. I did send them a cease and desist letter in 2018, they ignored it, but it was not from an attorney. I’m not about to spend money on this, beyond — maybe — a $400 filing fee. If I file, then I will seek legal advice. In the case of the WikiMedia Foundation, the mail was to the registered agent for the corporation. It was received and ignored. That could be expensive, or not. It depends on the future, and I have no crystal ball. Filing a lawsuit is a PITA, but having the Hovind filing is helpful, it gives me some language (fitting what I already knew) (He had plenty of time to research the matter, and the appearance is decent. The legal soundness of the suit might not be.
And here is looking to another 30 lawsuit threats next year!
Okay, suppose it gets around that it is this easy to file a lawsuit if they ignore a “cease and desist letter”? Threats are meaningless. There are legal theories that have never been tested in court. For example, a service provider might host an “attractive nuisance,” and could be negligent about abuse of the site for defamation. Wikipedia has rapid processes for dealing with serious libel.
The filing fee is $400 in U.S. Federal Court and there are other rules. The fee can be waived if the filing is in forma pauperis. $400 is a lot of money to me. But I do have nonprofit support for my expenses. Should I spend it on this? Decisions, decisions.
Meanwhile, I’ve been taunted by Oliver Smith. Tempting! However, would I be suing him? That’s already being done by Emil Kirkegaard, as far as I know. Serving process in the UK would be a pain for me. No, my primary suit would be against the WikiMedia Foundation, because their action responding to libels sent to them has created a cause of action that completely bypasses the restrictive conditions in the Terms of Service, and they just may find out how expensive that was, for zero benefit and zero protection of their users. It’s easy to serve them and I can file Diversity, so it’s a short drive to the court. I’m convincing myself . . . .
Toulouse also wrote, this year, “This website is COMPLETELY supported by our users.” So was he lying or was “Rationalwiki fan” lying?
(“Fan” is often in Smith brothers’ user names. A major account for Darryl on Wikipedia was “Fodor fan”, and other names like that have popped up. Toulouse probably was not lying, and he is not necessarily personally responsible for the mess on RW. I pick: the troll was lying, and the organizational support, if any, has gone to individual authors, such as Darryl L. Smith.)
A word of advice from someone who knows about RW
January 9, 2019 at 3:03 am
You should distance yourself from the Institute for Natural Healing (INH). They are selling a fake cancer cure for $149. Offering a fake unproven cancer cure for money is dishonest. If the FDA investigates this, there could be trouble for you.
You are on the medical board for this institute so you are responsible. There are real people out there who are being damaged by this. I do not see any libel on your RW article. Calling out quackery is not libel. You talk about damage to your reputation but you have done this yourself by associating yourself with snake oil salesmen peddling fake cancer cures. I recommend that you immediately resign from the INH and offer a public apology. If you are a responsible GP you should do this!
Once again, this is Darryl/Skeptic from Britain/John66, who just created the RW article, Institute_for_Natural_Healing. I have no opinion on the INH, other than noticing that a “system” is being sold by someone linked from that site, and it is up to Dr. Kendrick whether or not he continues his relationship. There are other prestigious figures listed as being on the Advisory Board, and perhaps Dr. Kendrick will consult with them. That INH sells a product or products (for “natural healing”) does not convince me that it’s unethical, “snake oil.” It could be. Pseudoskeptics like Darryl Smith announce a possibility, an appearance, as if fact. They are not actually rational.
There were responses:
And who appointed you to be an authority on what is and what isn’t quackery?
Dr. Malcolm Kendrick
January 9, 2019 at 3:52 pm
They have special powers. I prefer the view of Wilfred Trotter: ‘The truly scientific mind is altogether unafraid of the new, and while having no mercy for ideas which have served their turn or shown their uselessness, it will not grudge to any unfamiliar conception its moment of full and friendly attention, hoping to expand rather than to minimize what small core of usefulness it may happen to contain.’
Nice quote. It led me to TrotterWilfred-Quotations.htm, great stuff.
I particularly like these:
If mankind is to profit freely from the small and sporadic crop of the heroically gifted it produces, it will have to cultivate the delicate art of handling ideas. Psychology is now able to tell us with reasonable assurance that the most influential obstacle to freedom of thought and to new ideas is fear; and fear which can with inimitable art disguise itself as caution, or sanity, or reasoned skepticism, or on occasion even as courage.
In science the primary duty of ideas is to be useful and interesting even more than to be “true.”
Nothing is more flatly contradicted by experience than the belief that a man, distinguished in one of the departments of science is more likely to think sensibly about ordinary affairs than anyone else.
The mind likes a strange idea as little as the body likes a strange protein and resists it with similar energy. It would not perhaps be too fanciful to say that a new idea is the most quickly acting antigen known to science. If we watch ourselves honestly we shall often find that we have begun to argue against a new idea even before it has been completely stated.
And this led me to a quote by one of my favorite people.
In science it often happens that scientists say, ‘You know that’s a really good argument; my position is mistaken,’ and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn’t happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) — Carl Sagan
The socks are now rattling David Gerard’s cage. New account appeared on RW: Street guy. Classic Smith username. Two edits so far: adding “pissed at us” category to the Kendrick article, and warning David Gerard about me allegedly trying to get Kendrick to sue, claiming I had linked to Gerard’s user page. This is what they do, they create disruption. I did not create that lawsuit conversation. I did not link to Gerard’s user page, that was Rationalwiki fan January 8, 2019 at 5:53 pm. But I did quote that here.
Gerard is a pretty bright guy. Will he notice what is going on? He is aware of the Zoe Harcombe article.
More comments appeared:
January 9, 2019 at 7:02 pm
Abd ul-Rahman Lomax has been claiming to sue Rationalwiki for over a year, because it merely logs his internet bans. No law suit was ever filed. It is impossible.
He wrote that article originally. I have never claimed I would sue Rationalwiki for “logging my internet bans.” I did send an email to RationalWiki, but have never sent a registered letter.
I doubt I would file against RationalWiki by itself, unless they ignore a cease and desist order, but I have a clearer case against the WikiMedia Foundation, which has, in fact, ignored such an order.
No law suit has been filed by me, yet, but a related suit has been filed in the U.K. by Emil Kirkegaard, against Oliver D. Smith, who used RationalWiki as a platform for defamation. It is possible that RationalWiki will see some legal action in that case.
It is not possible to sue Rationalwiki and win. End of story. You will not win because there is no libel on the website, it is not illegal to call someone out for promoting quackery. Abd Lomax has been spreading the conspiracy theory that a group of skeptical brothers edit Rational Wiki for years. No proof has been presented, just allegations because he hates skeptics and is anti-science.
In the adult world, daring people to sue you is a classic Bad Idea. This is adolescent bluster. Darryl is here correct — if this is Darryl and not Oliver — that it is not illegal in the U.S. to call someone a quack, though circumstances can vary and I’d suggest getting legal advice before relying on that. However, it could be illegal in the U.K. And not only are Darryl and Oliver in the U.K., but so are Kendrick and David Gerard, for that matter, and the Smiths are here trying to pull Gerard into this mess.
Claiming an anonymous Wikipedia account is someone because you believe it to be someone is not evidence. You have no real life evidence that can be cited in any court, just anonymous screen names. See you in 5 years time, when you are still complain about this! No laws have been broken. Debunking quackery is not an illegal offense. Quackwatch makes a living out of it. Get in the real world people.
The Smiths are under thirty and obviously with no legal experience. I have evidence. This troll does not understand what happens, at least in the U.S., when a “complaint” is filed. When a corporation is sued, if the forms are properly followed, they must appear, which is expensive. I can represent myself, but they cannot. It is not necessary to provide any proof when filing an action. It is not necessary to even have proof. One simply asserts the complaint “on information and belief.” Rather, once a action has been accepted by the court, and the time for dismissal (on legal grounds, generally) has passed, then discovery begins, which includes legally-compelled testimony. So a party will be faced with a choice: do they lie under oath? “You have no proof” is not a legal argument. Lying under oath is very illegal, and refusing to testify in a matter like this can punished as contempt of court.
(I am *not* a lawyer, but I know enough to file an action.)
The Smiths are facing possible criminal charges in the U.K. The charges in the U.S. would be civil, generally. However, I first got involved because they had impersonated a target, in order to cause him harm. That could very well be illegal here, not to mention in the U.K. I’ve been impersonated as well.
Dr. Malcolm Kendrick
January 9, 2019 at 7:21 pm
You don’t know what libel is in the UK.
Right. Or if they know, they are lying and don’t care. This person is in the U.K. He is defaming real people and imagines he is protected by his feeble attempts to hide his identity.
January 9, 2019 at 7:16 pm
Abd ul-Rahman Lomax it is not illegal to create a RW article! But can you point out what is illegal on your RW article? https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Abd_ul-Rahman_Lomax
I don’t have “my article” there on me in mind. That article was a moving target for quite a while.
It merely logs your internet bans and your pseudoscientific views.
What “pseudoscientific views”? I will cover that question elsewhere, it’s been a while since I looked at the article.
This is all beside the point, I’ve been communicating with Kendrick about events on Wikipedia and on his blog, and about events on RationalWiki. These comments by trolls are an excuse to spam links to the RW article, and I became involved in this affair because Oliver claimed I was Skeptic from Britain, who had attacked Kendrick and others. Attempting to cause harassment, which was done with the user attacked as SfB, is certainly a tort, actionable civilly, but may also be a criminal offense.
This is why you could not sue the RW foundation, because it is a factual article, not defamation. If Kendrick wants to blog on his RW article and point out what is defamation I would be interested. There is no defamation there. The article quotes his own words.
I know the legal theory RW operates on, and Wikipedia used to follow it (they deviated from it, and that creates an opportunity). It is correct that I cannot sue the RationalMedia Foundation (at least get the name right!) at this point, but that can change.
I have created over 600 RW articles going back over 9 years debunking pseudo-scientists.
When I point this out, I am called, by the Smiths, a “conspiracy theorist.” 9 years is longer than I have seen. Care to tell us what account you began with? I have DinoCrisis and Forests for Darryl. DinoCrisis started in July, 2012.
I am not a “pseudoscientist.” I support and work to facilitate genuine scientific research, testing hypotheses. As well, I started a nonprofit to fund this work. It is called “pseudoscientific” with no basis for that at all. I’m published under peer review in a mainstream journal, albeit on an emerging topic. Kendrick is like that, on a different topic. So is Gary Taubes, on the same topics as Kendrick, and, by the way, the same topic as my major work.
I have never been sued and neither has the RW foundation. Why would I stop now?
Obviously, it’s necessary for someone to take a stand. Darryl’s brother Oliver has been sued. “Rationalwiki fan” has claimed that lawsuits have been filed and failed, contradicting what was just written. Yes, Hovind failed and probably got some legal advice, after being released from prison, that he didn’t have a chance. (It is not clear that the RWF ever appeared in that case.) But there can be different circumstances. I know that no lawyer would advise this troll to do what he has been doing.
Of course, on RW it is now being claimed that I’m “Rationalwiki fan.” This is what these trolls do.
Everybody on RW is immune and most of us anonymous.
That is very bad advice, if it’s advice rather than just bragging. I’m not going to explain why.
You can not prove in court of law who we are. I do not live in England btw. So could good luck suing me! I will be laughing in ten years time when I am still doing this. I get paid for it as well.
To show that I can prove identity in a court of law, I’ll have to file an action, right? Problem is, the mail culprits, who have dragged others along who were merely gullible, are in the U.K. and it’s difficult (read expensive) for me to file in the U.K. I would rather just document the hell out of what these guys have been doing, and perhaps assist others who have been defamed and who can afford the traffic.
He lies constantly, and sometimes tells the truth. He will get exactly what he deserves. I cannot prove, at this point, that this troll is a Smith brother. However, the duck test is very strong. I have not attempted to study the edits of random blog trolls, it’s generally too much work to collect that data. I have, however, identified more accounts than I have revealed. Just, so far, none before DinoCrisis on RW.
Looking at DinoCrisis from the perspective of the claim here, DinoCrisis appears on RW in full swing. I conclude this was not his first RW account. I have yet to study the early accounts from Wikipedia and elsewhere.
Look up Gillian McKeith on RW for one of our best articles. She has never attempted to sue us but is from the UK. https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Gillian_McKeith her article is 110% factual. Citing facts is not defamation! If McKeith can accept her article, why not Kendrick? =)
I like 110% factual. It implies 10% invented, beyond fact. It’s up to Kendrick what he does, if anything. He’s not buying all this crap.
Dr. Malcolm Kendrick
January 9, 2019 at 7:37 pm
You say that I am a pseudo-scientist. What is the definition? Is it yours, or is there some society somewhere that makes these decisions. I am just interested. I have, for example, just been asked to give a talk to the Science and Technology Facilities Council in the UK, which advises the UK Govt on scientific matters. Last year I lectured on diabetes to the Scottish Lipid Society – and suchlike. Yet, you have decided, in your infinite wisdom, that I am a pseudo-scientist. The article on Rationalwiki on me makes no scientific points – at all – it is purely an attempt at character assassination. I have never managed to engage any of these Wiki warriors on any discussion, on anything. They simply attack, and hide, and will not reveal who they are. It is utterly pathetic. Perhaps you would care to stop hiding and tell me who you are. It is irritating being attacked by those who will not argue, are happy to make insulting comments – and hide. I have one called Vegan Warrior who e-mails me from time to time, but blocks any reply. Again pathetic, and the exact opposite of scientific discourse. You seem very proud of yourself – I wouldn’t be.
Two pieces of advice for Dr. Kendrick: do not trust that Vegan Warrior is a vegan. He might be, or he might be a pure troll.
The other piece of advice: keep all the emails with full headers. As well, if you have access or can get it, keep the server logs for your blog. They contain information about the users who commented. This is part of the evidence I have that they claim does not exist.
These trolls are scientifically ignorant, they have no idea about the scientific topics, they only know what can be made to sound bad. Defamation is their entire game. Hatred and contempt, the ancient enemy.
Looking for lawsuits, I found also Matthews v. RationalWiki Foundation. There is a copy of the complaint on RW. This was related to the Hovind case. The copy quotes this text (allegedly from the Hovind article), allegedly published February 8, 2014: “Hovind has filed numerous legal claims with Matthews’s help including FRAUDULENT liens on property the US government seized for his debt.That language is still in the Hovind article, which claims that the lawsuit was never served (and it was also dismissed for failure to prosecute). This was basically BS, at worst a minor error in a mass of defamatory material. Both Hovind and Matthews are out of prison at this point, apparently, and have better things to do.
Nevertheless, I found the dismissal order, which is full of what can be taken as legal advice, what to do and what not to do.
Based on a search for “v. RationalWiki Foundation” and “v. RationalMedia Foundation,” I find no evidence that RW has ever actually been served with a lawsuit; in the two cases mentioned above, they were incompetently pursued, dismissed without prejudice (they could have been filed again), and apparently abandoned.
The Matthews case appears to have been relatively weak, and I have no opinion on Hovind’s case.
Just for completeness, I have reviewed WMF propaganda about Previti v. Wikimedia Foundation, G & G v Wikimedia Foundation Inc (very interesting! — see also this, which names the case differently), Crookes v. Wikimedia Foundation Inc., found out about Smith v Wikimedia Foundation Inc (whew! – a pro se plaintiff seeking a billion dollars for being served porn), American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine v. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., filed for discovery purposes (appears to have disappeared quickly, my guess is that the WMF provided the access information they had . . . though they normally require a court order) .
Dr. Evelyn Schels v. Wikimedia Foundation Inc is great stuff. (and see WMF comment on it.) MOIGE v. Wikimedia Foundation shows that if the wiki removes the material, it escapes liability.
Looks to me like the majority of these suits were incompetently pursued, and, given that there are possible errors the Foundation could commit, creating torts, over many, many instqances, my guess is that they settle quickly when faced with something serious. Their lawyers are not stupid. I do expect the Foundation will eventually face a copyright violation suit from the “monkey selfie photographer,” if he ever raises the costs. (The USPTO, my opinion, issued a radically incorrect assessment of that case, neglecting the co-ownership possibility).
This continues, getting more and more ridiculous.
[redacted] was correct in what he did
January 9, 2019 at 10:03 pm
Lomax you are well known for causing internet drama but as you are doing it, I might as well feed you. According to your blog “As well, the author of the RW article on Kendrick is obviously Skeptic from Britain, again a U.K. resident”.
He continues to defame [redacted]. He creates many socks, which enables him to make directly contradictory arguments. In some places, he claims that Skeptic from Britain was [redacted], in other places he claims it was me, and on RationalWiki, a new sock claims that the trolling posts on Kendrick’s blog are me. Kendrick knows (I assume, as blog owner) that those are not me. As to the article on Kendrick, once again, he lies, relying on what someone might see with a shallow glance:
The author of the RW article was Bongolian and John66 wrote most of it.
John66 complained to Bongolian that he was having trouble creating the article, because of the spam filter. So Bongolian created it as a stub. John66 had already written the article, and continues to create articles pursuing the exact agenda as Skeptic from Britain. New user? Guess again!
John66 posted he was French!
I must be wrong, then, surely he wouldn’t lie!
How do you KNOW these are UK residents? More libelous allegations from you Lomax, no facts. How the HELL can you prove any of the allegations you are making? How do you prove a bunch of anonymous Wikipedia accounts belong to a real life name – IMPOSSIBLE!
That is for me to know and him to find out. He knows the reality here. I’m a journalist. I don’t need “proof.” I need sufficient evidence to state conclusions. He is claiming libel? Libel of whom? Is he claiming that the checkusers and stewards were lying? Yes, they did not identify the sock master by name, and we know there are actually two people, who could easily present an appearance of independence . . . or they could slip and be identified as the same. Unless there is only one, which Oliver did claim at one point. Oliver is the brother who is clearly identified, and Oliver has exposed his brother. Not by name, to be sure, that information comes from elsewhere. Public records, which will not be libel. The brother of Oliver D. Smith is Darryl L. Smith. Who, as Debunking spiritualism on RationalWiki, attempted to delete those admissions, then retired and claimed he had been hacked, and they recently began claiming I was known for impersonations, attributing this to Guy Chapman (JzG). To my knowledge, Guy, famous as the hind end of Wikipedia, never went that far.
“Impossible” is the refrain of pseudoskeptics.
You 0 evidence “skeptic from britain” created the Kendrick RW article, you have 0 evidence who these people are, all we have is thousands and thousands of obsessive words on your blog. You sound like a mad man.
Someone is very interested in those words and has been attempting to stop them since 2017.
What you are doing is doxing an innocent person’s real name and connecting it to an anonymous Wikipedia account. This is libel Mr. Lomax!
The man is confused. Doxxing is not libel. It’s considered a social offense on some wikis. The Smiths doxx to an extreme, routinely, but if anyone points out who they are, they start screaming. They also doxx themselves, and if someone points to it, then they scream and often succeed in getting others to sanction anyone who even discusses it.
If it’s libel, it’s easy to handle. It’s called a cease and desist order. Anonymous claims don’t cut it.
He spams that everywhere he can find that will keep it. He wrote it. “Anonymously,” of course. New account (Marky); some weeks after threats he would retaliate for listing his sock puppets on the meta wiki, writes the article, having done an obsessive level of research into my past, though he certainly did not find everything, I have on-line history since the 1980s, when I was a moderator on the W.E.L.L.
Your RW article is still live and well as of 2019. You said you were suing Rationalwiki years ago, why did it not happen? Like I said… it is impossible to sue RW! Shall we have this conversation in ten years when I am still laughing? See you then, shall I get the beers in 🙂
I don’t think I ever said I would sue RationalWiki (and little more than a year ago, I was still a sysop on RationalWiki and knew nothing about the Smith brothers). I have written about the possibilities of legal action. I’m a journalist-blogger, and write about stuff.
At this point, it is probable I will name the RMF as an additional defendant, but that depends in part on what actions they take or fail to take, faced with a clear demand, formally presented. I don’t have a crystal ball, it’s a lot of work to file a proper legal action, there is a reason why attorneys are paid so much. I’m not going to encourage this troll to drink, but he may need it. He just added a “pissed at us” category to the Kendrick article. Piss off enough people, people with means, and they just might act. Oliver has discovered that. He seems to have quieted down lately. Or not. These trolls are nothing if not persistent.
January 9, 2019 at 10:26 pm
I am an admin on Rationalwiki, I will not reveal my username as Abd will no doubt attack me. I just want people to know that Abd was banned on both Wikiversity, Meta-Wiki, Wikipedia and Rationalwiki. This is a common theme with this individual.
In other words, he wants anonymity so that he is free to attack real people, by their real names, without personal consequences. (In fact, when he is outed as a RationalWiki user, he simply retires the account and starts a new one, and RW gives out sysop privileges very easily.)
I was banned on Wikipedia many years ago, long story. I never appealed it, I certainly knew how. As to Wikiversity and Rationalwiki, that was the work of the Smith brothers, who recruited a few others, they manage to do that often. All that was in the last year. I was never banned on Meta. There was a global lock issued, obviously based on private complaints. (There is a public ban process, not followed. There was a move afoot to unblock me on Wikiversity, it had sysop support, but was made moot by the global lock.)
Here is Abd ban’s reason “repeated doxxing as well as harassment, now attacking rationalwiki users on his personal blog”
That was added to that page by Debunking spiritualism, an obvious sock of Darryl L. Smith — outed by his brother, this was one of his last actions before “retiring,” (later contributions), then went on a deletion spree attempting to cover up the evidence, then claimed he’d been hacked, and . . . they blamed me. I have never hacked anyone’s account and have never impersonated anyone. They do it routinely.) This is all really obvious if one actually looks at editing history. But most people (including most sysops on RationalWiki) do not actually look at history. They just do whatever the F they want, and actual evidence is . . . boring. So the Smiths get away with the most blatant lies.
This is his user talk page as it stands now. He was upset, it’s obvious. He confirms that he and his “family” have been doxxed (and by many, actually. I never doxxed him on RationalWiki, they actually doxxed themselves. Or Mikemikev is more sophisticated and persistent than I thought. It doesn’t matter, this was Darryl, logged in as DS, clearly admitting identity. Nobody else has been doxxed like that. “Impossible”? Sure. If you cover yourself with a blindfold, wrap yourself in linen, and bury yourself deep in the mire of hatred, it’s “impossible” to prove.
Of course he claimed he was hacked. But what he had been doing was totally consistent with prior behavior, at what point did he stop “normal activity” and then the new login was an impersonation? He had gone too far, but not to worry. He could fix it. And, in fact, it serves his purposes, because he can tell the truth, and then, later, when someone else points to the same facts, he can claim that they are following the trolls.
In regard to Wikiversity, an Admin banned Abd and wrote:
“Your long term activity at Wikiversity shows a persistent pattern of long term disruption that has been going on for the past SEVEN YEARS! This activity has also drawn a great deal of unwelcome contentious activity to our site that distracts the community from developing learning resources. The unblocks in your log show repeated attempts by our community to assume that you are making a good faith effort to improve Wikiversity despite much evidence to the contrary. I’m not going to get into the minutia of your individual actions. I’m going to make a call based on the sum of your contributions. Wikiversity is not your personal podium. Your participation here has become a drain on the resources of our community and we will not allow this to continue.”
Indeed, Michael Umbricht wrote that. Wikiversity administrators had no authority to ban. That was reserved for the community. But this bureaucrat had been inactive, and showed up simply to become involved in this action, and there was open coordination with the Wikipedia skeptical community. Wikiversity had strong traditions of academic freedom. Umbricht trashed them. I had been extremely active on Wikiversity at one time, I had been an administrator, and was very involved with governance. And then I saw what the founder of Wikiversity called Wikipedia Disease. I generalized this to Wiki Disease and wrote about it. Wikis are vulnerable to factions and to administrative abuse, and community decisions can become mob rule. I had been blocked last previously, about two years before, for claiming that a bureaucrat did not understand dispute resolution process (in response to a claim that he was an expert at it). He made my point by blocking me for the comment. I was unblocked and there had been no further blocks or problems. And then Umbricht wrote the above.
It was well established that bans were only for the community, not for administrators, who can block, but then any admin could unblock. One was actively considering it. He was, I’m told, threatened with retaliation if he did, and then the Office ban made it moot.
This is the house that Smith built. But it is also the house that Wales built. Does he realize this? Wikis were an experiment. They could be absolutely fantastic, but fall short. Why? Could this be prevented? That was my long term study.
This user is repeating arguments well-known to the Smiths. They have been posting them for many months. An administrator wrote about Smith sock arguments, on the meta wiki, that they show “unusual knowledge.” It is one of the signs that a user is a sock. It is not proof, but circumstantial evidence, and as this accumulates, it can become, for all practical purposes, proof.
https://en.wikiversity.org/wiki/User_talk:Abd#Blocked_2 (comment found on the edit history of the talk-page)
The correct link. Notice dissent from the block there. I was most concerned at that point about preserving extensive content, written not just by myself, but others. I was busy archiving it.
There is a pattern here of disruption, no doubt the Kendrick business he is enjoying. He will write 2 million words on it.
I am not saying he should be banned from this blog, but his internet shenanigans is well known. He has been doing this for years. If Kendrick wants his Rationalwiki article removed, please join the talk-page and make a request to why you want it removed. Thank you.
If he does want it removed, that would be the first step. I’d advise him to consult privately first, but it’s up to him. This is, however, almost certainly Darryl.
My guess is that his brother has hunkered down. But I could be wrong. (At some point, to be sure, other RW users might get involved. On RW, most Smith socks are obvious, but . . . there is one I have found that is not. I’m watching. There is also an active Wikipedia who was flagged for me. Again, I’m watching. At this point, both are possible, but both would indicate maintaining “good hand” accounts not so easily identified. Smith has claimed to have many Wikipedia accounts in good standing. He has also claimed to have many hundreds of accounts on RationalWiki. Of course, he can also claim that those were impersonations, yet some impersonations existed for substantial periods without any exposure, such as “Schizophrenic.” Only some years later has Darryl claimed that this was an impersonation of his brother.
If Dr. Kendrick checks the IP address of the trolls, he is likely to find that they are using open proxies or Tor nodes. Once in a while they forget and use their home IP. They also use a particular mobile provider. See rationalwiki/ip-study/
And Geolocation is more of the impossible evidence. It took me months of study before I announced conclusions as to identity. Why? Was this worth all that time? I don’t actually know. This is life, we climb mountains because they are there.
Dr. Kendrick replied to the above:
Dr. Malcolm Kendrick
January 10, 2019 at 4:13 pm
This is the last approval, until you tell me who you really are – in a way that can be validated. I am getting fed up with anonymous people claiming this and that. It is like some prolonged child’s game.
I’d have suggested not approving anonymous defamation from the beginning. . . . This is indeed a child’s game, the Smith brothers have been doing the like of this since before they were twenty. However, they do real harm to real people. Allowing anonymous defamation was an error Wikipedia fell into long ago. Editors should never be anonymous! Providing anonymous tips to reporters is standard, and reporters are normally trained to filter them, and the police, the same. Wikipedia puts real people on a level equal to the anonymous, or even a step down. RationalWiki is an attractive nuisance, encouraging anonymous defamation, even empowering it. They deliberately don’t have checkuser running. It’s all a big joke for them. But they are now swinging at diet and health, a trillion-dollar issue, lives are at stake.
More on Darryl L. Smith. No evidence, my big toe! (Warning, long! This was Darryl in an unguarded moment.)