Wikipedia:Conflict of interest/Noticeboard

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Welcome to Conflict of interest Noticeboard (COIN)
This Conflict of interest/Noticeboard (COIN) page is for determining whether a specific editor has a conflict of interest (COI) for a specific article and whether an edit by a COIN-declared COI editor does not meet a requirement of the Conflict of Interest guideline. A conflict of interest may occur when an editor has a close personal or business connections with article topics. An edit by a COIN-declared COI editor may not meet a requirement of the COI guideline when the edit advances outside interests more than it advances the aims of Wikipedia. Post here if you are concerned that an editor has a COI, and is using Wikipedia to promote their own interests at the expense of neutrality. For content disputes, try proposing changes at the article talk page first and otherwise follow the Wikipedia:Dispute resolution procedural policy. Sections older than 14 days archived by MiszaBot II.
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Shortcuts:
You must notify any editor who is the subject of a discussion. You may use {{subst:coin-notice}} ~~~~ to do so.

Additional notes:
  • This page should only be used when ordinary talk page discussion has been attempted and failed to resolve the issue, such as when an editor has repeatedly added problematic material over an extended period.
  • Be careful not to out other editors. Wikipedia's policy against harassment takes precedence over the COI guideline.
  • The COI guideline does not absolutely prohibit people with a connection to a subject from editing articles on that subject. Editors who have such a connection can still comply with the COI guideline by discussing proposed article changes first, or by making uncontroversial edits. COI allegations should not be used as a "trump card" in disputes over article content.
  • Your report or advice request regarding COI incidents should include diff links and focus on one or more items in the What is a conflict of interest? list. In response, COIN may determine whether a specific editor has a COI for a specific article. There are three possible outcomes to your COIN request:
1. COIN consensus determines that an editor has a COI for a specific article. In response, the relevant article talk pages may be tagged with {{Connected contributor}}, the article page may be tagged with {{COI}}, and/or the user may be warned via {{subst:uw-coi}}.
2. COIN consensus determines that an editor does not have a COI for a specific article. In response, editors should refrain from further accusing that editor of having a conflict of interest. Feel free to repost at COIN if additional COI evidence comes to light that was not previously addressed.
3. There is no COIN consensus. Here, MiszaBot II will automatically archive the thread when it is older than seven days.
  • Once COIN declares that an editor has a COI for a specific article, COIN (or a variety of other noticeboards) may be used to determine whether an edit by a COIN declared COI editor does not meet a requirement of the Wikipedia:Conflict of interest guideline.
To begin a new discussion, enter the name of the relevant article below:


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Category:Requested edits is where COI editors have placed the {{Request edit}} template:


G2003[edit]

declared COI
undeclared COI articles (chronological order)
botched(?) COI
drafts to watch
user

G2003 hasn't come clean as a paid editor per agreement at ANI (see archive 859). Background: has been active for years now. Notified of COI in early 2013 and denied in mid 2014 then admitted in late 2014 with a promise to stop. Never explicitly enumerated paid connection(s). My investigation of articles edited shows big discrepancy between declared COI and the remainder. Brianhe (talk) 16:25, 27 June 2015 (UTC)

Seems pretty clear that they are a paid editor, and yet they've failed to actually disclose it properly, and are continuing to do it despite claiming to have stopped. Saying "I've been paid to maintain this article" is insufficient, the Terms of Use specifically require that the client who paid them is disclosed. Joseph2302 (talk) 16:51, 27 June 2015 (UTC)
To be completely clear, his October 2014 promise was to stop paid advertising. Not sure what that's even supposed to mean in terms of our COI policy; is it paid advocacy? Is a list of product "key features" advertising? — Brianhe (talk) 17:12, 27 June 2015 (UTC)
They have not done much editing lately. This is a concern though [1]. Maybe a block until issues can be clarified would be useful. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 17:54, 27 June 2015 (UTC)
Support block proposed by @Doc James:. Tagged Jessica Huie, MBA Polymers, Jay Mo, Yank Barry, Landbay, Henry Herbert Tailors, DAMAC Properties, Charlotte Fantelli, Shane Zaza with COI notices. The others seem to have had a reasonable amount of non-COI input from other editors, else were already tagged. — Brianhe (talk) 18:32, 27 June 2015 (UTC)
Added some COI-ful userspace drafts to watch in case of future shenanigans. — Brianhe (talk) 18:43, 27 June 2015 (UTC)
Support block, at least until they're willing to disclose properly, and IMO should be longer than that. Undisclosed paid editing is not acceptable, and undisclosed paid editing after apparently claiming that you'd stop it is even worse. Joseph2302 (talk) 18:36, 27 June 2015 (UTC)
Tagging Yank Barry on the article page flags a moot issue. It's been almost a year since G2003 edited that article, and that dispute, which went all the way to litigation, has since been resolved. I'd suggest taking the COI notices off articles where the edit wasn't recent and has since been undone. John Nagle (talk) 18:43, 27 June 2015 (UTC)
Undid Yank Barry COI notice, thanks for seeing that. What else do you suggest? — Brianhe (talk) 19:06, 27 June 2015 (UTC)

Also useful to note that there are numerous article that G2003 created that were subsequently deleted for failing a range of guidelines and policies (admins can take a look at their long list of deleted contributions). One deleted article was a hoax, although it does appear that G2003 himself was hoaxed (the subject also managed to get similar stuff onto Fox News Asia's site) rather than him having any malicious intent – however it does show the perils of such an approach. Number 57 15:20, 28 June 2015 (UTC)

Did we get anywhere with sorting this out? Doesn't look like we did. Joseph2302 (talk) 00:28, 10 July 2015 (UTC)
Doesn't look like it to me either. Support block, obviously. — Brianhe (talk) 01:04, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
Blocked. MER-C 05:29, 28 July 2015 (UTC)

Morgan James Publishing and related articles[edit]

User:TriJenn has a COI on their userpage saying they "sometimes work on client articles". They've been repeatedly adding unsourced content to Morgan James Publishing, and adding Morgan James Publishing as book publishers on the other articles (despite the fact no other book publishers are listed on them). This strongly suggests that Morgan James Publishing are paying this user to edit/spam, especially as Morgan James Publishing previously paid User:BiH to create the article about them. I've asked them about COI and specific disclosure on their talkpage, but they aren't responding, but continue to edit. Joseph2302 (talk) 14:49, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
They also previously created Randy Gage via WP:AFC, disclosing him as a "previous client" (not an adequate disclosure).Joseph2302 (talk) 14:51, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

I have copied my response to Joseph2302 from my User Talk page:
First, Morgan James Publishing is a past client. I am not currently receiving compensation from them, nor do I expect to do so for this editing work. Frankly, I can not figure out how to add this information to my USER PAGE. I would appreciate instructions to help me do that. I assume this is the place to do that. If not, please let me know. (Yes, I see that I made edits to this page before. However, I truly can not figure out how to do it.)
I noticed that their page was marked as AfD and I wanted to help by linking to notable authors. I believe it is good policy to add sources to author pages such as books they have written, who the publisher was, and ISBN numbers. This is what I was doing. I hardly think this is spam.
Further, isn’t adding notable, credible information what is supposed to be done when an article is marked as AfD? If I know that information, shouldn’t I share it?
As to your point that my information was unsourced, the very definition of sourcing - based on the article you referenced https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Identifying_reliable_sources - is to cite the publisher.
Definition of a source[edit]
The word "source" when citing sources on Wikipedia has three related meanings:
The piece of work itself (the article, book)
The creator of the work (the writer, journalist)
The publisher of the work (for example, Random House or Cambridge University Press)
Any of the three can affect reliability. Reliable sources may be published materials with a reliable publication process, authors who are regarded as authoritative in relation to the subject, or both. These qualifications should be demonstrable to other people.
As for “not responding” to you, with all due respect, I responded quickly as soon as I saw your notice. It takes a few minutes to generate a thoughtful, researched response to concerns such as yours.. — Preceding unsigned comment added by TriJenn (talkcontribs) 15:50, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
Copied my response:

With respect, the issue is that you aren't adding sourced content, you're adding completely unsourced content, as it's not being accompanied by reliable sources- saying "I know it to be true" is not a reliable source. Also, you weren't responding to me and were continuing to edit hence my complaint. Joseph2302 (talk) 16:05, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

@TriJenn: You can edit your userpage by going through this link: Special:Mypage. — Brianhe (talk) 16:35, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
@Brianhe: Thanks very much. I will take care of that.TriJenn (talk) 16:41, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
@Joseph2302: I also wanted to let you know that I had written out my detailed response, thought I saved it, and only later did I see that it was not saved at all. So, I had to completely rewrite it. It all took some time. TriJenn (talk) 16:41, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
@Brianhe: Your link took me to my User page. I have no trouble finding the page. I just can't figure out how to edit it. I see no "edit" option, like on other pages. I have done extensive searches inside and outside of Wikipedia. I feel pretty stupid as I am sure this is quite simple. However, I can't figure it out. TriJenn (talk) 16:49, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
The edit button is in the same place as anywhere else on Wikipedia. Also, you still need to stop ignoring the bit where I said "due to your COI, you are discouraged from directly editing these articles, use the article talkpage instead". Joseph2302 (talk) 17:19, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

(undent)@TriJenn: It looks like you found the link to your userpage. However, I think you forgot some folks on your COI declaration. [2]Brianhe (talk) 05:33, 16 July 2015 (UTC)

EBY3221[edit]

CEOs and the like
maybes
to-do list
AfC approvals "SPA" notes whether the creator is/was an SPA

If there is doubt, then there is NO doubt. I have no doubt this is undisclosed, paid editing. Top three entries -- CEOs, credit loan companies should be convincing enough. Brianhe (talk) 23:45, 8 July 2015 (UTC)

Pictogram voting info.svg Administrator note: User has rollback, pending changes rights as of now. — Brianhe (talk) 23:55, 8 July 2015 (UTC)

I've noticed that they've been creating all these articles as drafts (which is the correct thing for COI/paid editors to do), but then accepting them all themselves, so on the article talkpages it says "accepted via AfC"- this seems pretty odd and dodgy to me, never seen it before. Joseph2302 (talk) 00:01, 9 July 2015 (UTC)
And posting the "article accepted" notices to his own userpage [3]. Beyond dodgy. Brianhe (talk) 00:12, 9 July 2015 (UTC)
Actually if you use the AFCH script to accept articles, it automatically sends a notification to the submitter. But I cannot see a legitimate user doing that, most editors with 7 years experience would just create articles rather than using a draft process. Joseph2302 (talk) 00:18, 9 July 2015 (UTC)

NOTICE: I have commented out the following. {{cot|Lengthy denial by EBY3221}} -Elvey

"If there is doubt, then there is NO doubt"? Wow. Because there's a pattern? But nothing ACTUALLY WP:Puff?!
I'm sitting gobsmacked. How do I respond? I've been on Wikipedia for 8 years. I've donated thousands of hours of my life. NOT PAID. Teahouse, articles for creation, 3O. Logged in, not logged in. I spent two weeks trying to fix that Maryknoll article a few years ago.
This list of articles (all the ones I've written in the last 2 years?) are great!! I wrote them with neutrality and a mature understanding of Wikipedia policies. Show me where I didn't.
Take away the charity articles because I do hunt for charities to write pages for - I gave up fighting the Sun Yun Moon battle a few years ago and decided the best way to fight his horde of followers was to fill Wikipedia with other charities. Take away the topical stuff (Roskopf was on the cover of the newspaper magazine a few weeks ago, Hatmaker's blog is viral). You can quickly figure out my IRL. Yes, mention that Wikipedia is your hobby once and it's all over. I've been in my boss' office and had him run in a person and say I'm a Wikipedia editor like I'm royalty. People immediately ask if they are notable enough for an article. If they are, they want one. We all know this. I always warn them, "You may hate it and once it is up, it won't come down. I only write what conforms to WP:BLP and you don't get a say." My boss has NEVER pressured me to write them, always says I have to follow the rules, and the closest he's come to paying me for Wikipedia articles is a signed copy of a book after the fact.
I just spent an hour editing Ken Sunshine because it was obviously written by a PR rep and was completely peacock. You asking if I have a COI with some of these? Yes - some of these people I've met, some of these people I admire. But I have written every article with a Chinese Wall and always adhered to the same pillars that I teach other new editors. BECAUSE I AM ABOUT THE ETHICS. Go back through my editing history, though much of it isn't signed in the rest tells you who I am.
I am going to say this, Brianhe, directly to you although it bends Wikipedia's policy against personal attack. Listing articles as though CEO's or credit companies or marketing companies naturally shouldn't be in Wikipedia so of course they MUST be PR? This is one of the underrepresented sectors here and one that suffers prejudice (ahem). I will go make a COI statement on my page to the extent of the people I have met who I have written about. I probably should have done that but I am not sure when - frankly, and I was thinking about this with the Ken Sunshine thing, where COI starts is an issue for most of us at Wikipedia. We write about our interests and often they intersect with our real lives. Sunshine's people are paid PR people who sit in cubbies and try to bend Wikipedia to their client's will. But the rest of us do not have that clarity. Once I am done being outraged, this is somewhere I should probably volunteer. Wikipedia deserves SO much better than a page like this. If we want the encyclopedia to keep growing with good articles - we need a way to acknowledge that all of us write what we know, who we know, write what we love, and get more from it beyond the altruistic. Gratitude and acknowledgement to a copy of a book in thanks afterwards. This is not BAD - encouragement in many forms is what keeps all of us here. It may not cut down on the 1000 deletions/day but it may boost the volume of good articles.EBY (talk) 01:22, 9 July 2015 (UTC)
  • I just saw a comment about how I write articles. Seriously? That IS a personal attack. I had the draft page as a bookmark and I like the draft page because it allows me to make all my mistakes without being live and it doesn't force me to do the coding and moving, which I suck at (see all the dangling archives and drafts I've left over the years). I can't be the only one who likes using this system? I used to wait for someone else to approve my articles for publication but as a one of the actual approvers, I realized a while back that I was adding to that backlog and could just publish it and then wait for it to be patrolled - which is a similar process. I did try to write an article live recently and screwed it up by putting an erroneous "S" in the name.
  • This morning, I am looking again at this list and shaking my head at all of you. You made erroneous allegations and assumptions and have no narrative at all stating how these articles are PR. Mike Mohr is not an executive - there's award named after him at MIT, he was a teacher who died (I am not associated with MIT) but I was never sure he met notability. Likewise Howard Sweeney, a doctor who is the former father in law of someone I knew in college. My child really loves Gulla Gulla island. (A MAYBE, REALLY?) John Rennie is an architect I got interested in doing an article on an Australian landmark. David Savage is an artist, he wrote this gorgeous book that was on my friend's coffee table. Jen Hatmaker is a Christian motivational speaker who has a viral blog I've read. Brad Walker wrote a book that physical therapists like to give patients. Benita Refson started a charity that the Duchess of Cambridge made famous. I am so deeply disappointed in this process - why me? Who ARE you people? How did you decide that the pantheon of my interests somehow is questionable? There's nothing in these articles. There's nothing in my behavior. In fact, 80% of my article touches remove puff - and I do it ALL by hand with 20 tabs of refs open. How many tags have I left because of questionable refs and tone? I've been a champion for neutrality. GO LOOK. I happen to work in an industry that brings notable people to my attention who don't have articles. SO I WRITE THEM. Like the guy who wrote most of the Hawaiian ukelele articles. 90% of these people don't know who I am but I am willing to bet all the ukelele players knew that other guy. No one here has made a single example of how my articles are bad, just because I wrote some about these entrepreneurs who wrote books you've put me on a witch hunt. Look, I get the problem of paid PR people damaging articles with slant and puff but what are the rules you live by as you fight that? Doesn't there actually have to be PUFF and SLANT and someone who damages articles?
There has to be a better way than saying "I don't like the pattern of the articles you write, therefore I suspect you and everything you've done." That's just not Wikipedia.EBY (talk) 16:21, 9 July 2015 (UTC)
Short reply because I don't want to come across as emotional about this, but you have expressed conditions under which you definitely have a conflict. You're writing about people you know professionally. Your boss lauds you for it. You said (I think) that you receive gifts in return. Your editing history is singularly focused on attention-seeking people, whose own careers benefit from the attention you provide them. It looked indistinguishable from paid COI to me (see User:Brianhe/COIbox2 for a clearly parallel case) and we investigate this sort of stuff day after day, as is appropriate. One additional thing: I write sometimes about authors who probably benefit from attention, and I write sometimes about rocks that don't care if they get attention (my history is also transparently documented at my userpage). But if all I wrote about was attention-seeking people, and never about rocks, it wouldn't be surprising to me if some other editor confronted me about it and at least asked the question "why"? I'll be on wikibreak starting tonight, so others here can comment on their perspective on this and continue the conversation if need be. — Brianhe (talk) 18:41, 9 July 2015 (UTC)

I haven't looked into this in great detail yet, but from the few articles I have looked at I agree with Brianhe that there are reasons to be concerned. Take for example these diffs of my removals of content EBY3221 added: [4] [5] [6]. The sourcing of the content was extremely poor, completely failing WP:V and was also promotional. I've also noticed unsourced BLP content e.g. [7] which also makes me concerned as it raises the question of where the information came from. It's also odd that this image was uploaded only 3 days after it was uploaded to Flickr as it suggests that EBY3221 was in contact with the subject. @EBY3221: can you please explain these edits? Thanks SmartSE (talk) 16:02, 10 July 2015 (UTC)

Likewise, see these uploads by another user claiming authorship, the same day that EBY3221 started to write David Savage (artist). And again with File:JohnBowenCEG.jpeg [8]. SmartSE (talk) 16:23, 10 July 2015 (UTC)
I'm only finding more problems. See this series of my edits starting to clean up David Savage (artist). Huge chunks of text were referenced to sources which didn't even mention him! If this is typical there is a lot of clean up to do. SmartSE (talk) 17:21, 10 July 2015 (UTC)
  • This is self-evident promotional abuse, I have blocked the account for now. Guy (Help!) 23:30, 13 July 2015 (UTC)
    • @JzG: Thanks. Given the lack of communication and the amount of fake referencing I've found so far there didn't seem to be any other option. SmartSE (talk) 21:27, 14 July 2015 (UTC)
@JzG: @Joseph2302: Yeah, thanks. @EBY3221:: Edits that introduce undisclosed paid advocacy, are illegal in the USA. Keeping the content you contributed, given how obvious it is that it's largely the result of UPAE would be aiding and abetting. So unless you can identify, article by article, what is paid and what isn't, we will need to err on the side of caution and delete most of it. Jimbo himself has said that "FTC 16 CFR Part 255 is relevant" to showing that "PAE (Paid Advocacy Editing) is flat out illegal." --Elvey(tc) 16:57, 23 July 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Could the rollbacker and reviewer rights userboxes be removed from the userpage? Brianhe (talk) 23:56, 24 July 2015 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done SmartSE (talk) 16:23, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Justin Lafazan[edit]

Scott Duffy (edit | talk | history | protect | delete | links | watch | logs | views)
Greg S Reid (edit | talk | history | protect | delete | links | watch | logs | views)

Additional[edit]

MMSS4S has written nothing but promotion.
Justin Lafazan started Millennial Marketing Strategy and Students4Students College Advisory. MMS and S4S. When put together that makes MMSS4S.
Much of the text of Justin Lafazan comes from the subjects own website. The image used [9] comes from Lafazans website and MMSS4S says xe is the copyright holder.
Randy Sutton and Scott duffy are both fully formed advert obviously created by a shill.
Pics of Scott Duffy and Greg S. Reid [10] are promo shots with copyright owned by MMSS4S. Both subjects have had previous spam on here from socking shills. The Reid photo comes from the same shoot as a photo on Reid's facebook page. The Duffy photo appears on his copyrighted website and comes from the same shoot as one that may have been on the previous article which was created by a sock of User:Sibtain 007, this photo[11].
Lafazan, Sutton and Reid are all connect through The Umbrella Syndicate. duffbeerforme (talk) 12:51, 10 July 2015 (UTC)

Justin Lafazan advertises a Wikipedia Package for $1000!!! [12]. duffbeerforme (talk) 11:36, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
The "Zachary Barden Bio Draft" inexplicably contains material from the deleted article on Justin Lafazan. @Duffbeerforme: It's obvious that MMSS4S has violated the TOU, and the link you found on his website is enough for me. However, I'm not seeing the relationship with Sibtain 007 that could justify the G5 placed on Randy Sutton. The CU on the SPI is inconclusive, what behavioral evidence is there? The photograph? §FreeRangeFrogcroak 19:04, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
If this part of his bio is true then he might become notable for an age discrimination lawsuit: "Over 30 employees and contractors support the growth of MMS - with the oldest employee age 22." Brianhe (talk) 23:31, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
Jeez. Reporting the trademark violation to WMF. SmartSE (talk) 21:07, 23 July 2015 (UTC)
MMSS4S is a confirmed sock/master as of less than 24 hours ago. Their edit history is suggestive of something going on at other articles like Frank Shankwitz and that leads me to Robert Angel via one intermediate editor. I'm going to take a break from COIN for a bit, so another ed. can have at it, if you're interested. — Brianhe (talk) 20:36, 26 July 2015 (UTC)

Studios 301[edit]

Sharkywoo has been creating a bunch of new promotional articles for people from Studios 301. Working directly with them User talk:Sharkywoo#Image ownership. duffbeerforme (talk) 13:03, 10 July 2015 (UTC)

Deleted most of the puffery from Studio 301. They'd repeated some things three times. Also removed their employee list. Added a reliable source. John Nagle (talk) 18:49, 16 July 2015 (UTC)

User:MallExpert[edit]


The user has a confessed COI on their user page related to their "representing" the Westfield Corporation, a major owner of shopping malls, and was advised about it some years ago. However, their entire spate of recent edits (including to the above article and many other Westfield properties) has inserted clearly promotional language, peacock terms and other clear POV issues, directly against the guidelines they were advised about years ago. I do not believe the user can be trusted at this point. oknazevad (talk) 00:52, 11 July 2015 (UTC)

This was just an honest mistake on my part. I'm new to the site, having taken over the account from a previous person. I will be sure not to make this mistake in the future. Please do not change my account status. MallExpert (talk) — Preceding undated comment added 21:38, 11 July 2015 (UTC)
Accounts are personal and cannot be shared or transferred to another person. Please read the username policy. Jytdog (talk) 21:41, 11 July 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Accounts must not be used by multiple users- as a result, this account should be blocked, and you should create a new account. Joseph2302 (talk) 21:48, 11 July 2015 (UTC)
Accordingly, I have blocked this as a shared/role account. Kuru (talk) 22:29, 11 July 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for the block. I have listed the articles and tagged them all for COI and their talk pages too. Jytdog (talk) 22:49, 11 July 2015 (UTC)
Quite a lot of them just aren't notable, so I've redirected them to Westfield Group. If/when an unconflicted editor wants to write about them, and can show their notability, I'm fine for them to be recreated. Joseph2302 (talk) 23:04, 11 July 2015 (UTC)
added main page and Westfield editor who edited there, just to round this out. Jytdog (talk) 23:27, 11 July 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I'm done trying to clean these up, every time I touch one of them to remove promotional content or just a redirect/PROD of non-notable spam, @Jojhutton: reverts it. I guess we should just let the spammers spam instead. Joseph2302 (talk) 23:35, 11 July 2015 (UTC) ──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── added two more historical COI editors. Jytdog (talk) 01:01, 12 July 2015 (UTC)

  • Three things. First, Jytdog, please identify the other two accounts you are referring to above. Secondly, slow down. These articles have existed for years, another few days is not going to destroy Wikipedia. Finally, remember that your own personal point of view of what is and is not notable is not the deciding factor here, and that shopping malls have generally been considered to meet the GNG. (Oddly, I probably agree with you that most of them aren't notable, but our shared view of notability is quite a bit narrower than that generally held to be the case at AfD.) Risker (talk) 05:13, 12 July 2015 (UTC)
    I believe the users in the same diff, Westfield North County (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) and Jeffin60613 (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log), are the two intended. I corrected a typo in the Jeffin60613 reference. --Unready (talk) 19:30, 12 July 2015 (UTC)
Per the case at Arbcom I am not working on COI stuff for a bit. Jytdog (talk) 23:52, 12 July 2015 (UTC)
Should some or all of these be merged into Westfield Corporation, the parent company? See WP:CHAIN. Branches of chain stores are not usually considered notable. Macy's Herald Square has its own article, but that is one of the most famous department stores in the world. Westfield's malls are generally big, but not that individually notable. Comments? John Nagle (talk) 19:13, 15 July 2015 (UTC)
Normal practice in AfD discussions has been the malls of under 1 million square feet are not usually notable, and I think that at least very few articles for less than 500,000 sq ft have been accepted at afd. DGG ( talk ) 18:39, 22 July 2015 (UTC)

AN discussion regarding username changes[edit]

There is a discussion at here that some of the regulars here might be interested in. §FreeRangeFrogcroak 03:53, 11 July 2015 (UTC)

Looks like that basically went nowhere, and the individual you mentioned basically refused to disclose on his new (sort of) userpage. What now? — Brianhe (talk) 02:05, 16 July 2015 (UTC)
@Brianhe: Nothing, I guess. Apparently the community doesn't think it's a problem, which makes me despair a bit honestly. It means you can get away from COI by simply requesting a username change, awesome! §FreeRangeFrogcroak 20:41, 16 July 2015 (UTC)
The only solution I see that preserves integrity of the COI investigation and resolution process is to aggressively and comprehensively update the registry of conflicted editors at Wikipedia:WikiProject Integrity/Editor Registry. It has been nearly dormant since May. — Brianhe (talk) 20:45, 16 July 2015 (UTC)

Michael Thibodeau[edit]

I follow the Michael Thibodeau article and a user has attempted to add biographical information about him, which is fine to do, but the user seems to have a COI. An IP user edited the page claiming to be Jim Cyr, Thibodeau's communications director. After being reverted as adding unsourced information, the person edited the page having registered Jimcyr as their username. They have not yet replied to posts on their talk page about their edits, which again, aren't necessarily bad, but they are unsourced which is the primary reason I have reverted the changes. On their last edit they attempted to cite themselves as a source. 331dot (talk) 22:14, 9 July 2015 (UTC)

Today they added a very promotional edit about him(about his 'guiding principle'); they did cite some sort of web page but it wasn't clear what exactly they were citing in the page. 331dot (talk) 15:39, 13 July 2015 (UTC)

I agree, they are continuing to ignore advice, adding promotional content sourced only to Michael Thbodeau's official webpage. They show no signs of collaborating or discussing with other users, seems like a case of WP:NOTHERE to me. Joseph2302 (talk) 17:43, 13 July 2015 (UTC)
The user did contact me today; I directed them to their userpage to hopefully see the posts that have been put there already. 331dot (talk) 21:09, 13 July 2015 (UTC)
Just in case it wasn't clear before, they stated on my talk page here that they work for Senator Thibodeau. 331dot (talk) 22:51, 13 July 2015 (UTC)
Looks OK now. Puffery deleted, basic political history remains. John Nagle (talk) 06:40, 19 July 2015 (UTC)

MiamiDolphins3[edit]

I guess I'm coming out of hibernation (my wikibreak) early. The case involving this editor was archived a little more than a month ago, after another editor was blocked, and MiamiDolphins3 gave a commitment to clean up some non-NPOV and/or primary sources in Touch Surgery, Ryze Trampoline Parks, Jenner & Block, and Mile2. This was never done. Plus he's back to work on Jack McCauley this month; it was not listed on the noticeboard previously. — Brianhe (talk) 00:57, 16 July 2015 (UTC)

The Next Internet Millionaire[edit]

I'm shocked, shocked I say, that books about promoting yourself on the Internet are attracting COI from several SPAs. I've nominated The Next Internet Millionaire for deletion. — Brianhe (talk) 02:00, 16 July 2015 (UTC)

Still at AfD. If it stays, it will need trimming. John Nagle (talk) 06:41, 19 July 2015 (UTC)
Just noting that a consensus had not formed, and the AfD was relisted. Here's your chance to express an opinion at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/The Next Internet Millionaire, if you haven't yet. — Brianhe (talk) 14:36, 24 July 2015 (UTC)

KartRocket deletion review[edit]

Just thought I'd mention that KartRocket which was deleted as a result of action here, is currently up for deletion review at Wikipedia:Deletion review/Log/2015 July 13. Brianhe (talk) 19:01, 16 July 2015 (UTC)

Amalto and others[edit]

socking?
coordinated editing

Obvious COI for commercial articles. The second named editor has systematically !voted keep on several articles identified for blatant COI, and has an editing history nearly 100% matching COI-identified articles. Brianhe (talk) 21:23, 16 July 2015 (UTC) @JamesBWatson: added to list Jenzabar which you had protected in June, 2013, to prevent spam re-creation. @SmartSE: It appears possible there's a connection to the Aviation geek sockfarm via involvement in BLOC Hotels: as you pointed out at the AfD it was created by the sock TimeQueen32. — Brianhe (talk) 23:26, 16 July 2015 (UTC)

Just added three four new articles, two I just missed; Tulika Mehrotra was expanded from a crummy stub by Cosmopolite1. Flexenclosure was created by Ianphillipson and the logo uploaded by Cosmopolite1, who also appears to be active on ru.wikipedia where he created the corresponding article with a similarly-named account. Brianhe (talk) 00:11, 17 July 2015 (UTC)
I'm pleased to see a full list of my articles, but I'm very surprised to see an accusation of this kind.
I'm not coordinated with anybody and I don't have any WP:SOCK. All of my articles were written with WP:NPOV in mind. I don't have any "close connection" to any of my articles' subjects. Most of the information comes from secondary reliable sources. --Cosmopolite1 (talk) 01:10, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
Arr4, Renzoy16 and Cosmopolite1 have all been employed as paid editors in the past. However, I don't believe that they have been engaged in paid editing in recent months, so this is a somewhat older issue. - Bilby (talk) 04:12, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Andrewjohn39/Articles_for_deletion/Planview[edit]

Per discussion at AfD:

User:LaMona FYI, I don't know User:BiH and the reason I am commenting on the articles created by him is because I read long discussions on his talk page where he also mentioned pages created by him and that are now nominated for deletion because of notability issue. I am only putting evedences of notability and I feel that whoever nominated these articles had not reviewed the references himself and it was a biased decision to nominate them for deletion. Andrewjohn39 (talk) 18:50, 29 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Except that there is no such discussion on his/her talk page -- and that was easy to check. And how one ended up on such a talk page would need explaining. So I'm still dubious. LaMona (talk) 15:47, 1 July 2015 (UTC)
  • I can't help if you have a doubt but be assured that I don't know him...I accidentally landed on his page while reviewing a page created by him and then I went through all the discussions. Apart from this, I am only presenting the fact and doing nothing else..if you don't agree, present counter argument rather than blaming!! someone nominated pages for deletion because he thought that subjects are not notable..I am just trying to prove that nominations were wrong!! Andrewjohn39 (talk) 19:06, 2 July 2015 (UTC)

I haven't posted here before, so apologies if this is wrong place/wrong data. LaMona (talk) 16:45, 17 July 2015 (UTC)

@LaMona: The post seems fine to me. As they were also being discussed in the post above, I've made this a subsection of that discussion- hope that's okay. And yes, it seems dodgy to me that an inactive editor has been voting keep at lots of AfDs of articles created by BiH, who recently declared themself to be a paid editor. Joseph2302 (talk) 16:49, 17 July 2015 (UTC)

User:Andrewjohn39 added a CEO's portrait to an article created by undisclosed paid editor User:BiH here. Brianhe (talk) 23:23, 19 July 2015 (UTC)

There are other very suspect crossovers between Andrewjohn39 and BiH e.g. here where AJ added an awards section to Panaya that BiH had rewritten only 3 hours earlier. Similarly, they overlapped at Lumenis. Also as I noted here there was also suspicious, overlap between User:Arr4 and AJ. Looking back I've found more problems as their very first edit was this (admins only) creation of Healthcare Success Strategies Inc which was 100% promotional and obviously not written by a completely new user. Overall, I think this makes it clear that they are an undisclosed paid editor who is acting deceptively even when asked and as such unless an explanation is forthcoming, I don't see much other option but to block them indefinitely. SmartSE (talk) 11:46, 20 July 2015 (UTC)
Support blocking, of course. Brianhe (talk) 23:46, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done SmartSE (talk) 20:25, 26 July 2015 (UTC)

PNIStaff[edit]

Well gee, now that their edits have hit the Register's news, somebody want to contact PNIstaff (talk · contribs) about their COI re: PNI Digital Media ? Shenme (talk) 13:34, 18 July 2015 (UTC)

At least one corporate IP involved as well. Brianhe (talk) 14:07, 18 July 2015 (UTC)
The company page had very promotional wording. I added an advert tag to PNI Digital Media and did a first pass WP:NPOV cleanup. -- Eclipsed (talk) (email) 06:32, 19 July 2015 (UTC)
Why is someone bothering to promote them? They were acquired a year ago and no longer exist as a separate company. John Nagle (talk) 06:43, 19 July 2015 (UTC)
If you feel the company is not notable according to WP:CORP, then you should send the article to WP:AFD. I do note that without all the current press about the data breach, the company might not reach the notability threshold. -- Eclipsed (talk) (email) 06:46, 19 July 2015 (UTC)

Rebecca Rice (choreographer)[edit]

music
dance
other publicity-seeking topics

User:Lyricsexpress describes self on userpage as "Writer and assistant to other writers and celebrities who require rewrites, interviews and more".

Off-wiki evidence strongly indicates User:Lyricsexpress has a conflict (beyond his declaration on his userpage) about musician-related subjects. On-wiki evidence such as the edit summary on the creation of Marion Rice and uploads of probable family pictures shows User:Riceflan is writing COI about dancer-related subjects. Crossover between the two editors on Eleanor Norcross on 22 September 2010‎ exists for unknown reasons. Brianhe (talk) 21:35, 18 July 2015 (UTC)

  • Marion Rice at least is not just notable but famous. Some or all of the others are also notable. There may be a coi, but to me the articles do not seem promotional. DGG ( talk ) 18:29, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
My comments here were strictly to the COI aspect of the articles and the editors. — Brianhe (talk) 18:39, 22 July 2015 (UTC)

Coolguy365[edit]

Something very odd here involving a vanished user. I'm not sure if that's a violation in and of itself, but the occurrence of articles that have already been subject to COIN scrutiny is not encouraging. Note that Vanished user... started editing a few minutes after the IP from a now blocked webhost. Sandbox hijinks going on with Coolguy365. I kind of stopped pulling on the thread after some well-known articles started appearing, so this list is nowhere near comprehensive.

Worth mentioning, User:Arr4 made an odd an unexplained edit here, blanking Tiburon Incorporated; at the time it was Coolguy's sandbox. Possible retaliation for blanking here on another fishy corp article created by Arr4. Arr4 is also mentioned in another active investigation at this noticeboard, to which he/she has not responded, though was actively editing less than 24 hours before was notified. Arr4 was also active on Fleetmatics around the same time as Coolguy, and there appears to be coordinated editing on Be Green Packaging.

There was mutual sandbox editing on something called Culinaire International here.

Vijay Shekhar Sharma (Entrepreneur) is a sneaky recreation of Vijay Shekhar Sharma. One of the IPs appears to be aware of its existence as shown by this edit to his alma mater. I have added User:FreerangingAnik the creator of the new version to this case, but the old version was pretty dirty with COI edits as well created via undisclosed paid editing. — Brianhe (talk) 22:56, 19 July 2015 (UTC)

Turns out that Vanished user was created as a deceptive name, he wasn't vanished at all. Details here: Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents#Vanished user 6251. Thought this might be relevant to this discussion. — Brianhe (talk) 17:02, 20 July 2015 (UTC)

Sorry for my late reply, I was busy in our Eid-ul-Fitr celebration. Coolguy365 is undoubtedly a paid editor. That blanking by me was only retaliation/biting when I discovered that cool guy is a paid editor. I had bitten many other paid editors in this way to avoid my being caught by COIN. - Arr4 (talk) 07:32, 21 July 2015 (UTC)

@Arr4: Is there evidence you'd like to share with us? — Brianhe (talk) 14:19, 22 July 2015 (UTC)

Everymedia.in[edit]

Cooperation of editors above suggests a commercial connection. One editor's name probably refers to everymedia.in, a marketing company. The other has asked me personally how to write about PrimeFocus Technologies, a perennial COI magnet. A quick perusal of contribs points to extensive COI editing related to Indian cinema. Brianhe (talk) 17:03, 21 July 2015 (UTC)

I'm kind of burned out now but if somebody wants to pick at the scab, EveryMedia Technologies#Clientele would be a good starting point. Prime Focus is there for starters. — Brianhe (talk) 17:44, 21 July 2015 (UTC)
  • Kabir Vaghela also has a COI with respect to Dinesh Vaghela which came out at that articles AfD so he is very well aware of out COI policies. If he is doing more COI editing it indicates to me that he does not take on board community input. JbhTalk 18:06, 21 July 2015 (UTC)
Final note from me, Ferriswheel by User:AayushyaBajpai was apparently recreated by same ed as Ferriswheel Entertainment. Not the action of a GF editor. — Brianhe (talk) 18:22, 21 July 2015 (UTC)
As of today, Nikitanayak everymedia is actively editing Hyundai Creta. Hyundai is listed as an Everymedia client at EveryMedia Technologies#Clientele. — Brianhe (talk) 20:24, 28 July 2015 (UTC)

Robert Gerald Lorge‎[edit]

There have been repeated attempts by Runningfox34 and IPs over the course of the past week to add unsourced information to this article about a would-be politician. They have ignored warnings to cease and desist (User talk:Runningfox34, User talk:71.86.217.244). Today the subject of the article made this edit. The changes are mostly unsourced or sourced to the subject's self-published campaign pages. The subject also removed information about an election loss. Given the persistent disruptive editing, I'm requesting some help in dealing with this. 32.218.32.146 (talk) 18:33, 21 July 2015 (UTC)

He has also started whitewashing information in his father's article, removing information supported by reliable sources. 32.218.32.146 (talk) 18:45, 21 July 2015 (UTC)
I agree with 32.218.32.146, it has been frustrating removing uncited materials in the articles only to be put back in. Thank you-RFD (talk) 18:55, 21 July 2015 (UTC)
The subject article was deleted following an AfD and the user was blocked for making legal threats. This may bubble up again in some other form but for now there's nothing left to it. JohnInDC (talk) 20:53, 23 July 2015 (UTC)

Dag Creative Media and others[edit]

User:Raju Kapuria has made no declarations but apparently is creating paid stuff. The way corp articles come into being complete with infobox company and such is reminiscent of farms we've seen here before. — Brianhe (talk) 19:43, 21 July 2015 (UTC)

Seems like a sock of Rohit Kapuria — Preceding unsigned comment added by 42.0.5.226 (talk) 21:33, 21 July 2015 (UTC)

Blur Group[edit]

Please see this recent advert: Content writer needed to create 2 Wikipedia articles

I thought it might be useful to raise it here for consideration so that we can give Blur Group a clear idea of what is appropriate for Wikipedia. Leutha (talk) 11:24, 22 July 2015 (UTC)

Rocket Internet[edit]

editors

The Nigerian dot-com startup scene is a fascinating subject documented at Yabacon Valley. Unfortunately, billion-dollar IPOs plus shady business practices equals lots of COI articles on Wikipedia. I've listed here Rocket Internet and several of its creations. The list of SPA editors probably is quite extensive, I've just tapped a few here. @Garchy: you nominated the executive articles for speedy deletion. — Brianhe (talk) 14:11, 22 July 2015 (UTC)

Addendum. Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Kaymu may have been compromised by undisclosed, conflicted editors. @DGG: you nominated the article for deletion. — Brianhe (talk) 15:47, 22 July 2015 (UTC)

The problem, as usual with such articles, was whether the references were truly substantial, independent, and reliable. For many articles, fair people can think either way. In past years, I would usually give articles the benefit of the doubt. Now, for articles on companies, especially new companies, I increasingly think the opposite. For this particular article, I continue to consider the references (except possibly PCWorld) either general with merely a mention of the company or essentially press releases, & many of them from unreliable sources. But a really good press agent can get reliable sources to write respectable articles, and once there is a buzz in even the unreliable press, reliable sources tend to cover it. Our rules are inevitably helpless against such methods, because we must reflect the Real World, which is full of promotion and unreliability. (Incidentally, I just removed a list of the miscellaneous products they sell, which I considered a promotional product catalog.) If someone wants to renominate it, I'll comment.
More generally, perhaps every author of an article on a company should be required to certify in a positive way they have no financial connection. This might have more deterrent value than merely a rule against it. DGG ( talk ) 16:32, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
I just placed a tag for merging Kaymu Bangladesh to Kaymu. DGG ( talk ) 17:13, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
Multiple SPAs are arguing against the merge proposal, including this IP who appears to be speaking as two people, either accidentally or on purpose. — Brianhe (talk) 19:49, 28 July 2015 (UTC)

Black House Media[edit]

Nigerian public relations company, its CEO and a possibly related newspaper and its owner. Making inquiries to editors. Brianhe (talk) 15:00, 22 July 2015 (UTC) Added Nigerian Entertainment Today owned by BHM group, some of the same involved editors. Brianhe (talk) 15:27, 22 July 2015 (UTC)

I just placed afds for Ayeni and NOGIntelligence. DGG ( talk ) 17:12, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
@DGG: I think you meant you nominated Remi Aiyela and NOGIntelligence. @Tchaliburton: You nominated Remi Aiyela for speedy deletion, care to comment? — Brianhe (talk) 17:20, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
Yep. Ayeni is notable. DGG ( talk ) 17:24, 22 July 2015 (UTC)

Declared COI at Skyy Vodka[edit]

SPA with declared COI: "I work with an agency on behalf of Campari America and want to point out the below facts that are not fully represented on the page as it. Appreciate if an unbiased editor can implement these changes." Ref: Talk:SKYY_vodka#Updates_to_bottling_information.2C_sourcing.2C_awards_.26_current_bottle_shot. They're being careful and haven't done anything bad yet. They just want to put PR-type product info in the article. Please watch. Thanks. John Nagle (talk) 06:50, 23 July 2015 (UTC)

I cleaned out some promotional wordings/content in the article, and added the {{request edit}} template so the users request will show up in Category:Requested edits. -- Eclipsed (talk) (email) 07:24, 23 July 2015 (UTC)

Aleksandar olic and Active Collab[edit]

Aleksandar olic is an employee of the company that sells Active Collab, wrote our article on it, and has been steadily adding wikiliks to it on other pages. No response to the warning I put on his talk page. --Guy Macon (talk) 09:54, 23 July 2015 (UTC)

I tried to stay as neutral as possible. Would be glad to see someone more experienced edit the Active Collab article. I disclosed that I work there, so it should be edited by someone who doesn't have an affiliation. Any help appreciated. I added "Request edit" but it got removed. --Aleksandar Olic (talk) 10:10, 23 July 2015 (UTC)

Hi Aleksandar. I removed the Request edit template from the article, because it should be only on the talk page. Please feel free to post to Talk:Active Collab with edit requests. Thanks! -- Eclipsed (talk) (email) 10:19, 23 July 2015 (UTC)
...aaand he went right back to editing the page where he has a COI,[13] less than an hour after saying "it should be edited by someone who doesn't have an affiliation." --Guy Macon (talk) 01:15, 24 July 2015 (UTC)

Public utility district[edit]

A lengthy and badly POV edit to the article [14] was made by a self-declared PUD commissioner and stands since 2012. I'd like to recuse myself from editing this one. Brianhe (talk) 15:48, 23 July 2015 (UTC)

I'll give this a copy edit tomorrow morning. FoCuSandLeArN (talk) 21:48, 23 July 2015 (UTC)

Carmen Busquets[edit]

Women's fashion is too far outside my expertise to make a good judgement on this, but this person does appear notable, with at least one full NYT story about her. However the article looks heavily non-NPOV and has been maintained by one or more questionable anon editors, and one declared COI editor [no wrongdoing on their part as far as I can tell, just mentioning for completeness]. Also I haven't fully developed this, but I think advert on eLance to create a profile of a new enterprise and its CEO may be related to Busquets. Could some other folks have a look? Brianhe (talk) 19:49, 24 July 2015 (UTC)

Woodland Meadows[edit]

The article was a direct result of this elance listing. Same client posted this thing about a book they are writing on Woodland Meadows. Same elance contractor features David Carter (entrepreneur) in his portfolio; almost certain socking going on here ... see prior investigations here and Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/LogAntiLog/Archive. — Brianhe (talk) 20:27, 24 July 2015 (UTC) Posted to SPI as a recurrence of User:LogAntiLog. Brianhe (talk) 20:36, 24 July 2015 (UTC)

COIN team please note that since User:LogAntiLog/User:OWAIS NAEEM and his known socks were blocked on 8 May, the Elance account has taken 7 or 8 more jobs. Every single one of his jobs before or after 8 May either are explicitly Wikipedia edits, or are "private" and probable Wikipedia edits. So there's some buried stuff here still to be found. — Brianhe (talk) 20:48, 24 July 2015 (UTC)

User:Boniafashion[edit]

User:Boniafashion is a WP:SPA, making edits exclusively on Bonia (fashion), unexplained except for one terse edit summary. Clearly seems COI based on WP:DUCK and the promotional tone of the edits, and has not responsed to talk page messages. Instead, there was a recent reintroduction of a promtional timeline [15]. Dl2000 (talk) 22:16, 24 July 2015 (UTC)

Thanks for posting. Reviewed it; been prodded by Joseph2302 seconded by Brianhe. On my watchlist. Jytdog (talk) 00:22, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

Ken Sunshine staff[edit]

Given the controversy, we should give all the affected users' work a once over

These users have also declared employment by Ken Sunshine's Sunshine Sachs :

  1. User:Blue56349
  2. User:Orangegrad
  3. User:Stapler8

Blue56349 (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)

Orangegrad (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)

Stapler8 (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)

A sub-issue:

None of the COI disclosures seem adequate; the ToU require "...you must disclose your employer, client, and affiliation with respect to any contribution for which you receive..." From the FAQ: If you have been hired by a public relations firm to edit Wikipedia, you must disclose both the firm and the firm's client. I request these users be blocked unless or until their disclosures meet this minimum requirement, in order to prevent further damage. Requests/warnings like this have been insufficient. Also, perhaps a template is needed, use of which could he suggested at WP:COI --Elvey(tc) 23:28, 24 July 2015 (UTC)

Kirk B. Jensen[edit]

Draft was created by a SPA, rejected, then article created by another SPA, then edited by the first one. The draft is still there and needs to be histmerged. Brianhe (talk) 01:16, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

Smileverse[edit]

existing articles, created by user
prob COI edits by user (not complete)
deleted articles, created by user

Does this really need a comment? Brianhe (talk) 03:27, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

  • I have no idea at all about the COI issue, but there was a spam issue where the user was adding their website links to multiple articles and the case of a username that was essentially their website's domain. I had blocked as a spamusername, but the user provided assurances that they would not do that again and was unblocked. That can be seen here. I bring this up only because of the relationship between those links, spamname and COI. —SpacemanSpiff 17:21, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
This wouldn't be the first editor whose veneer of patrolling or other activity masks essentially COI contribs and WP:NOTHERE purpose. I developed the list above just by filtering their contribs by page creations and looking at the deletion warnings on his talkpage. Brianhe (talk) 17:49, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
The contributions are there in the userpage history too, in addition to the early contribution history.—SpacemanSpiff 18:08, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
Old dog, same old tricks in 2015:
Wow. See same user at #Comm100 case on this page. — Brianhe (talk) 20:35, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
Just ran across this editor's obvious profile at a pay-per-service site. Clearly this is paid, but will give him an opportunity to meet WP:TOU. Kuru (talk) 21:19, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

FYI, there is some relevant discussion related to Smileverse that took place on Daylenca's talk page last night that might be helpful. Inks.LWC (talk) 22:51, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

Hi all! My name is Daylen. This user is on Fiverr which is a violation of the Wikipedia policy WP:PAY. Below I have some information that I copied from my talk page:
Hi! I was exploring Fiverr regarding some design services and stumbled on this, (a Fiverr account offering Wikipedia article writing services, I can't link the page because Wikipedia won't let me; here is a screenshot of the URL, http://screencast.com/t/Mmw5XZiRfB). Isn't this in violation of the Wikipedia terms? While looking through the page to attempt to find their Wikipedia user name I stumbled upon this http://screencast.com/t/7As0jec01nX (two of his latest works, Tuft & Needle and Lancaster Insurance Services). I found that Dewimani was the only editor on the Lancaster Insurance Services article so I suspect that they are the seller. Also, on their talk page, Inks.LWC noticed that the user stated "I am aware of the Wikipedia notability guidelines & have contributed many with other name.", that leads me to believe that they have multiple accounts which is a violation of Wikipedia's policy. As such, I believe that an administrator should look into blocking this users IP address. Can someone please help me submit a claim because I have no idea how.
Daylen (talk) 23:44, 24 July 2015 (UTC)
If you have evidence that they're improperly using multiple accounts then you should file an WP:SPI. It should be noted there are a few cases when multiple accounts can be used. In terms of paid writing, it's covered under our policy at WP:PAY. It's strongly discouraged, but until the issue is addressed further through complete prohibition, then they may have edited within the limits. Was anything you noticed expressly promotional? Mkdwtalk 03:29, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
My guess, after looking at a comparison of the three accounts and the screenshot that Daylen provided (which shows that Lancaster Insurance and Tuft & Needle are connected), it looks like it might be three people all working for the same "company". Unfortunately, I don't really have time to be of much more help right now, as I'm taking the bar exam in 4 days and only came here now because I was pinged; however, if the issue is not yet resolved by July 30, feel free to give me a reminder on my talk page, and I can look into it some more. Inks.LWC (talk) 07:21, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
I actually just realized something... I noticed in the Fiverr ad that it states, "If you want us to write for News about you. Contact us". Smileverse, one of the editors to Tuft & Needle (but not Lancaster Insurance Services) is the editor-in-chief of Bangalorean.net (he posted his personal website information to his user page, so there are no outing issues with what I'm saying). In the past, Smileverse has created articles about subjects that he has written about on Bangalorean.net and used his articles as sources. I informed him that doing this was a conflict of interest. A lot of the articles he was linking to from Bangalorean.net were very promotional in there tone, and with that line about "write for News about you", I have a suspicion that he may be getting paid to write stories on Bangalorean.net so that he can use them as "news sources" to make articles here. I had had a suspicion that he might be a paid editor, just based on the articles he had written before and how promotional in nature they were, but now with this Fiverr post that shows that Dewimani, Smileverse, and Baligema might all be connected, that raises more suspicions. Just looking at the editor interactions, it is not apparent that Dewimani is connected, but quite a few articles that have been created by Smileverse and Dewimani have been deleted, so some common pages between them would no longer show up. I know that at one point, they both created an article on a businessman, William Benson (Smileverse created William Benson (businessman), and Dewimani created William benson(businessman)). So there seems to be some connection between the three, and there are certainly some conflict of interest problems, but the exact connection isn't 100% clear. As I said before, I don't really have the time right now to devote to this (I've already spent more time on it than I should have), but if it isn't resolved by next Thursday, I'll come back to this. Inks.LWC (talk) 08:35, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

Daylen (talk) 04:19, 26 July 2015 (UTC)

From the evidence above, as well as their earlier foray as a link spammer it is abundantly clear that this user is not here to write neutral content. I'm therefore going to block them indefinitely, but should note that I would be very hesitant to unblock them even if they disclose their COI as WP:NOTPROMO is the reason for the block. I will have a look through some deleted contributions as well to see if there is a chance of sockpuppetry. SmartSE (talk) 20:19, 26 July 2015 (UTC)
@SmartSE: Can I suggest that you start with AlphaPoint as it has a finite set of pretty clearly connected SPA editors? — Brianhe (talk) 22:06, 26 July 2015 (UTC)
See Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/Smileverse there were several other suspect editors not included here. I also uncovered links to Wikipedia:Sockpuppet_investigations/TejaswaChaudhary/Archive. I had a look at those accounts at Alphapoint, but they looked to be more like employees of the company editing Smileverse's version rather than socks. SmartSE (talk) 17:29, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
Oh and if this is at all typical of their writing style, there is a whole lot of content that needs cleaning up. SmartSE (talk) 17:32, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Refspam from bangalorean.net[edit]

I'm seeing fallout from the bangalorean.net SEO (at least that's what I think it is) e.g. at James Presley and affecting Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Saurav Dutt. Any suggestions on how to handle it? - Brianhe (talk) 04:35, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

@Brianhe: check Special:LinkSearch e.g. [16]. There aren't too many links but that may lead to some new articles. It should probably be blacklisted as well. SmartSE (talk) 12:48, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Posted blacklist request at MediaWiki talk:Spam-blacklist#bangalorean.net if anybody wants to chime in. Brianhe (talk) 14:53, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Don Nicholas (publisher)[edit]

Bio of an Internet marketing type, orphan article, created by SPA and rescued from PROD by same. The earliest revision gives you an idea of how badly conflicted this editor is. The text has been whittled away to NPOV, leaving a blurb that basically establishes he's alive and owns an Internet marketing gig called Mequoda Group. They used to issue press releases like Top 100 Media Blogs and were mentioned once two years ago in Adweek [17]. Does somebody want to AfD this? Brianhe (talk) 14:29, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

At AFD. §FreeRangeFrogcroak 19:59, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

Comm100[edit]

editors

It has come to my attention through off-wiki investigation of a COI issue that Comm100 employs one or more people with the title "SEO Engineer" and they are active here. Brianhe (talk) 20:32, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards[edit]

users

There is strong off-wiki evidence that Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards was created by a for-pay Wikipedia editing service. Since then various conflicted editors have been maintaining it. Starting report now, will fill in details later today.

[Later today] Note that Sclarke was developing this page in near-entirety well prior to the creation of the current article, which was posted by meat- or sockpuppet Ikey1206. Did they use Wikipedia sandbox here to sneakily transfer it to the other editor?

Getting into outing territory, but there are notes at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Michael Kitces (2nd nomination). Finplanwiki is a contributor to CFP and Michael Kitces. Also the only one of these accounts that appears to be editing in 2015.

Added American Academy of Financial Management for involvement of Wealthadvise there. @Rschen7754: for possible legal ramifications per your edit at Doctorlaw SPI

Finplanwiki seems to have self-identified as Marv Tuttle. This leads to Financial Planning Association and another SPA there, PlanningProf .

Fpresearch ←→ Dave Yeske, FPA president or something. I hope this is not an autobiography but ... this upload of Dave Yeske's portrait is suggestive that he is the same. Brianhe (talk) 19:26, 26 July 2015 (UTC)

Umm, I am not Marv Tuttle. Just wrote his bio, and several other leaders in our planning industry too. I try to update pages relevant to CFP planners. I don't know anything about how the CFP Board wiki entry was created in the first place. Maybe it was for pay. I just update it by trying to be an active member of this Wiki community, who happens to be a CFP. So yeah, I am a CFP, that's why I care about CFP Board and the other people I wrote up, but no more special than any of the other 72,000 of us CFPs... and as a CFP, yeah I'm also a member of our membership association FPA. I just post anonymous because our industry has crappy old regulations and my complaince department gives me crap about anything with social media. Not because I work for CFP Board or FPA (no thanks!!). Can't even have a damn Facebook page where I work! Finplanwiki (talk) 19:13, 26 July 2015 (UTC)
Refactored your reply with an indent (":" character) for readability. Sorry for the suspicion, but as you can see on this page, we have a major problem on Wikipedia with conflicted and undeclared editors contributing here. Would you mind adding something declaring your connection to the FP industry to your userpage? — Brianhe (talk) 19:25, 26 July 2015 (UTC)
Sorry, still learning all this Wikipedia formatting stuff. I added some info to my User page at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Finplanwiki. Does that cover what you were looking for? As for the CFP Board page... yeah, can't speak to how it got created in the first place. I'm just trying to keep the important info up to date as CFP Board changes their rules. Finplanwiki (talk) 19:36, 26 July 2015 (UTC)
Legal told me nothing at the time beyond a confirmation of getting my email, but you may want to ping User:Philippe (WMF) about this. --Rschen7754 04:27, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
Digging through my archives - I would guess that this is unrelated to that email. Rschen, if you think I'm wrong, could you send me reasoning by email? I may be forgetting something, and I'm sure your memory is better than mine. :-) Philippe Beaudette, Wikimedia Foundation (talk) 06:27, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Paymentguru[edit]

editors

Suite of SPAs for this financial company and its CEO. I've opened a SPI against three four enrolled users plus four IPs. Brianhe (talk) 02:12, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Chungsen Leung[edit]

Campaign manager for Canadian politician repeatedly removing a paragraph describing an incident said politician's career ([18], [19], [20], [21], [22], [23], [24]). Did not respond to my message on his talk page concerning reverts ([25]), and proceeded to re-revert anyway. Also removed several previous warnings and questions about the same behavior on his talk page: [26]. Richard Yetalk 09:50, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

User:Ajbutler proceeded to re-revert again -- without discussion -- despite COI notice on his talk page: [27]. Richard Yetalk 22:09, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
Another revert ([28]). Deleted notifications and comments on user talk page ([29]). Clearly, user is not interested in discussion -- can admin intervene? Thanks. Richard Yetalk 03:14, 28 July 2015 (UTC)
Reported to WP:AN3. Richard Yetalk 03:49, 28 July 2015 (UTC)

NeuLion[edit]

On the NeuLion article:

All of these accounts have only edited on the NeuLion article. Davealloway2001, JaredK511, and Wweiss look like names of employees of NeuLion (I can provide internet pages that show this). —George8211 / T 16:15, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Disclosures need work[edit]

None of the COI disclosures seem adequate; the ToU require "...you must disclose your employer, client, and affiliation with respect to any contribution for which you receive..." From the FAQ: If you have been hired by a public relations firm to edit Wikipedia, you must disclose both the firm and the firm's client. I request these users be blocked unless or until their disclosures meet this minimum requirement, in order to prevent further damage. Requests/warnings like this have been insufficient. Also, perhaps a template is needed, use of which could he suggested at WP:COI --Elvey(tc) 23:28, 24 July 2015 (UTC)

I'm not speaking out of turn since my involvement has been relatively short but seems to me a revamping of the whole process here is overdue. I think the answer is probably an interactive process, such as employed by Jytdog in this instance. Not sure a single template can accomplish that. Also, these three users have just disappeared since June 19 when the COI was uncovered, so what is the solution for that? My suggestion is a policy manual by which users who have gone silent can automatically be blocked. Probably included should be revocation of special rights (rollback/reviewer etc.) at some time prior to that, and revocation of account renaming privilege as soon as an investigation starts. — Brianhe (talk) 00:03, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
Both the COI template {{uw-coi}} and Jytdog note that Wikipedia's terms of use require disclosure of your employer, client, and affiliation with respect to any contribution for which you receive, or expect to receive, compensation. I'm feeling a shorter template that focuses on this, like {{uw-coi-incomplete}} would be helpful. (I can't say that interactive process stands out as a great example in my view. It's OK, but Jytdog chose to cherry-pick the CoI concerns he sought to address based on his strongly non-NPOV attitude - he tabled any discussion of the CoI of Dr. Lisanby. Intimidation like this is not exemplary either.) I second your policy manual proposal!--Elvey(tc) 01:26, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
Note for future self -- procedures manual should include how and when to a) remove permissions userboxes and b) to courtesy blank userpage. — Brianhe (talk) 16:56, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Page archive interval[edit]

I just noticed that the archive bot settings seem to be off. At the top of the page it says auto-archive will happen on a thread after 7 days of inactivity. The bot is configured for 14. We're getting a lot of activity here and the page sometimes gets quite long. If there are no objections in the next 8 hours, I will adjust the bot settings to 7 days as advertised. Brianhe (talk) 17:04, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

I moved it to 14 days, as cases kept getting archived before we could deal with them. Not long ago there was a case where that happened, and it ended up at ANI. A long page just means we have a lot to do... Jytdog (talk) 17:39, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

BankBazaar[edit]

User claims that he created BankBazaar as some kind of "dummy edit" but he's clearly been nurturing it over a period of time, as well as these other things he's created. There are other active editors with names suggesting a relationship to BankBazaar itself. Also I can't help but think that this is some kind of retaliatory thing. Just as a point of interest, this accidentally logged-out edit was from a Bangalore ISP. Brianhe (talk) 18:38, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Looking at BankBazaar, they seem to just pass WP:CORP for notability. They've been written up in the Times of India, the Economic Times, and TechCrunch, mostly because Amazon bought a 5% stake in them. The promotional material in the article needs to be toned down, but most of the hype was already taken out by Brianhe in this edit.[30].
Engineering Agricultural and Medical Common Entrance Test is a notable subject, but the article has a lot of uncited information. Watch for attempts to promote coaching companies.
Eamcet mock counselling probably should be merged into the Engineering Agricultural and Medical Common Entrance Test article. John Nagle (talk) 19:38, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
I beg to differ. Eamcet mock counselling is an advert masquerading as an article and I have tagged it for speedy deletion.--ukexpat (talk) 14:27, 28 July 2015 (UTC)
Bankbazaar would be notable (and I think I should be able to find some refs for that in the next couple of days) as they have tie ups with ICICI and HDFC banks for credit card application processing etc as well as their own funding sources. Just on a general principle, these coaching classes and all "add on services" shouldn't be merged to the main articles as they are nothing more than spam magnets (just look at the history of our articles on the Permanent Account Number, Staff Selection Commission etc for some background), and these are the typical companies that use SEOs etc. —SpacemanSpiff 17:45, 28 July 2015 (UTC)
Agreed. The coaching company article was speedily deleted, which was probably justified. BankBazaar is close to the threshold on notability; it's at AfD and could go either way. Wait out the AfD; if it stays, we can trim more hype. John Nagle (talk) 18:22, 28 July 2015 (UTC)

@Smartse: or other admin: Given the obvious COI nature of his contribs, and bald faced dishonesty in answering questions about it, could we get Nash2925 blocked now? — Brianhe (talk) 20:44, 28 July 2015 (UTC)

Flame37fighter[edit]

User has declared he is an employee of the Charlotte Fire Department which the article is about in this edit. Appears to be attempting to use the article to promote the department and is removing material that reflects poorly. Should be noted this is the only page the user has edited. --Zackmann08 (Talk to me/What I been doing) 19:50, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Raymond James Financial[edit]

It's hard to find a contributor to this article who is not a redlink SPA or drive-by IP. I will follow up in the next 24 hours with developments. Just listing here now if somebody wants to have a look. Edited further to add following This looks like a good candidate for WP:TNT, does anybody else agree with me? — Brianhe (talk) 20:55, 28 July 2015 (UTC)

Added contributor OnceaMetro per April 2015 Signpost report (Sony PR scandal). — Brianhe (talk) 22:01, 28 July 2015 (UTC)
I'll go along with WP:TNT, which might mean a temporary deletion since there is no requirement that we continue to have a badly written, ad filled article. I've also deleted 3 poorly referenced sections. In the long run though, I expect that this company is notable. I even have a word of praise to insert here: at least they have a link to (unaudited) financial statements. I think a link to audited financial statements should be a notability requirement for any company, especially financial companies. Though financial statements are not the end-all and be-all for any company, for financial companies, if you don't have financial statements to start with, anything else they say might as well be pure BS. Smallbones(smalltalk) 22:33, 28 July 2015 (UTC)
Added the most seriously involved editors above. All but one have added "Awards and Accolades" or trimmed negative information w/o explanation. FinEditor100 has been active editing today and I have asked him what his status is as a paid editor or otherwise. Brianhe (talk) 23:25, 28 July 2015 (UTC)

Various hedge funds and their managers[edit]

editors

In going through the Raymond James case, it appears to me that we have done a crummy job of cleaning up after OnceaMetro. Some of his edits were obvious in purpose, some more difficult to discern, so I'm listing everything that smells "off" here. At a glance it looks like there may have been teams involved in some of these, especially Roy Niederhoffer. Metro's edit history goes way back and the list of apparent clients is quite extensive; I've just cherry picked some of the more egregious and/or recently edited. Brianhe (talk) 23:47, 28 July 2015 (UTC)

Like I said, the full analysis is kind of tedious, but here's a start: User:Brianhe/COIbox13. Brianhe (talk) 00:11, 29 July 2015 (UTC)
SPI opened against the two editors named above: Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/OnceaMetro. Brianhe (talk) 04:22, 29 July 2015 (UTC)
Watch for cherry-picking in reports of fund returns. Pine River Capital Management mentions the return for their best fund in their best year, but doesn't give the usual 1, 5 and 10 year numbers needed to make comparisons. See this WSJ article [31] indicating they were underperforming their market by 2014. Also see this data for 2015 for all their funds.[32] Performance for the last year wasn't so great; several of their funds lost money. John Nagle (talk) 08:12, 29 July 2015 (UTC)