More Wiki-intrigue: Who is “FourViolas”?

Recently, I’ve written a couple of posts about Peter Galbraith’s Wikipedia entry and the extremely assiduous pro-Galbraith editing activity of two anonymous persons — Devotedamerican and Westencivil.

Well, now I’ve got more intrigue to report, and it involves one of Galbraith’s competitors for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination.

Those who’ve been following the Galbraith story way too closely for proper maintenance of mental health will recall that the activity of Devotedamerican was brought to attention by another Wikipedia editor.

The plethora of edits was flagged to VTDigger by FourViolas, a Wikipedia editor from Vermont who reported having stumbled upon Devotedamerican’s work while inserting policy positions on the pages of all the Vermont gubernatorial candidates.

In an email, FourViolas asked to be identified only by Wikipedia username, saying the community appreciates anonymity.

Yeah, well, here’s the thing. FourViolas has been extremely busy editing Sue Minter’s Wikipedia page. FourViolas’ first edit came on March 17; after that, s/he was inactive until May 21. Since then, FV has been responsible for 12 more edits. Most of them add biographical detail fleshing out Minter’s experience and qualifications.

One of FourViolas’ edits conveniently omitted an important fact. See if you can spot it:

Peter Shumlin, the Governor of Vermont, appointed Minter as Deputy Secretary of the Vermont Agency of Transportation in January 2011. Shumlin appointed her to lead the recovery effort following Tropical Storm Irene.

Who’s missing from the passage?

None other than Neale Lunderville, who served as Irene recovery chief from just after the August 2011 storm until January 2012, when Minter succeeded him.

Gee, I guess FourVIolas forgot about Neale. Which is, coincidentally, the same omission made by Minter’s new campaign ad touting her post-Irene experience.

You put that together with the fact that FourViolas ratted out Devotedamerican, and you’ve got the makings of an expanding — and really petty — battle raging on the Democratic candidates’ Wikipedia pages.

I haven’t checked Matt Dunne’s entry yet. I’m a little afraid what i might find.

Do I suspect that FourViolas is either Minter herself or someone close to her? Yes, I do. No evidence, obviously. But it’s hard to imagine a neutral party spending that much time on a Vermont politician’s Wikipage, whether it’s Minter or Galbraith.

4 thoughts on “More Wiki-intrigue: Who is “FourViolas”?

  1. newzjunqie

    Good call. Was listening to this interview & tho looks like Minter was @ the AOT during Irene, never differentiates between her duties. And there is *no one* who has the intricate details of
    personal & other info who has any motivation to buff the wiki but the candidates themselves.

    The quite obvious & studious avoidance of ever mentioning Lunderville, or anyones name strikes me as arrogant. This may come back to bite her since media seems to dislike having wool pulled on them. Vermonters all over the state contributed plenty.

    Trying too hard to take *all* of the credit by posturing as face-of & poster-girl for Irene recovery. Seems to be deceptively stretching her role into a seamless undertaking from the beginning of Irene to the end of recovery by using many other details which increase the timeline. If she were honest would have made this clear-so clearly she’s not.

    Greatly inflates resume, experience & plays gender card. Plans seem complicated & reek of big government control & spending. Calling BS on claim that “other states come to VT to understand how to do things” Glowing description of immigrants as human resources will impress no one but fellow D/P.

    A controllingness comes through, ‘we’re going to do this, that, one thing, another, putting this here & that there & placing things where we need them to be’. Surely business will love offering internships rather than jobs but seems like once again, worker takes the hit. Aki & Getler both mention role of legislature, breezes right on by.

    Another Shummy-like fast talker who keeps changing subject attempting to run down clock making own points & well rehearsed sales pitch. Campaign ads are sterile & smooth lacking authenticity, somewhat laughable. Has appearance of coterie of core supporters looking for jobs in a Minter regime.

    Including experiences of friends & neighbors in Waterbury in campaign ads which undoubtedly was hit hard, of ppl walking around in chest-deep waters is a stretch. Anything above the waist in standing floodwaters is not walkable b/c it’s still moving water & nearly impossible, would be difficult in a pool. Accurate details matter.

  2. FourViolas

    FourViolas here. Thanks for the critique! I’d never heard of Lunderville, but I’ll try to go find a reliable source and incorporate that info.

    I’m not affiliated in any way with any of the candidates; I’m a longtime Wikipedia editor and VT resident with an interest in politics, although I’ve mostly written about other things on WP. Believe it or not, I have put this much energy into several candidates: I wrote an entire article for Bruce Lisman, and what I added to Dunne’s page was the “Positions” and “2016 election for governor” sections, which you can go judge for yourself.

  3. newzjunqie

    Addition to wiki of Neal Lundervilles’ service to VT following Irene duly noted. Thought it was longer than 4 mos but at least finally recieving credit where due thanks to the efforts of the VPO-h/t.

    There are now purveyors of “reputation” services for companies & those well-heeled enough to afford them which monitor online presence & social media also. Online activity has become somewhat cloak-and-dagger with presence of trolls & all.

    Can understand why this could be necessary for those who work for & with the public, have a public presence & life. Constituent voter base very likely would have a vested interest in making their candidate look good — nothing wrong here just putting best foot forward. But clearly at least *some* input must be received from candidate or family since they are the ones with the correct updated info.

    Some strike me as overly ambitious & far too dogged to merely be setting record straight. But since learning of this activity via VTDiggers’ Jasper Craven & picked up by blogosphere apparatchicks such as VPO, good to know there are dedicated monitors watching the activity, factchecking, ascertaining accuracy & veracity.

    Product & service reviews which are far too glowing serve to stack the deck in favor of the interests of the vendor. Often receive nudges to review products purchased & mostly comply b/c this is how online marketing works plus I depend on them myself. Manage to weed out the ones which appear manufactured & go with consensus. But some of them are incorrect either on the good or bad side.


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