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Wikipedia sets new rule to combat “toxic behaviour”

BUSINESS
By BBC | May 24th 2020

Wikipedia is to institute a new code of conduct to battle what the firm called “toxic behaviour” by some volunteers.

The Wikimedia Foundation, the organisation that runs the site, voted on new measures that will be finalised by the end of the year. Wikipedia is written and updated by volunteers. Many, particularly women and members of the LGBTQ community, have complained of abuse and harassment from other editors.

Wikimedia’s board of trustees said maintaining civility was a core value.

“We must work together to create a safe, inclusive culture, where everyone feels welcome, that their contributions are valued, and that their perspective matters,” said Katherine Maher, the chief executive officer of the Wikimedia Foundation.

“Our goal is all the world’s knowledge, and this is an essential step on our journey.”

The foundation’s binding code of conduct for members will include banning or limiting access if volunteers violate the terms. It will also create a retroactive review process for harassment that took place before these rules were set.

Complaints about gender imbalances and harassment have plagued the platform for close to a decade.

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