Wikipedia unlocks divisive pages for editing

The online encyclopaedia Wikipedia says it has taken an “important step” towards making it easier to edit some of its most controversial articles. Up to 2,000 articles, including a page about former US President George W Bush, will have their strict editing restrictions relaxed. Users will now be able to submit changes to the selected pages for review by senior editors. It is part of Wikipedia’s ongoing efforts to curb vandalism of the site. Wikipedia’s founder Jimmy Wales said that the new system, called “pending changes” will allow the site “to open up articles for general editing that have been protected or semi-protected for years. Any edits to articles in this category are subject to review from an established Wikipedia editor before publication, although anyone can still view changes that have been proposed. For the duration of the two month trial, Wikipedia users will notice a small magnifying glass, in place of a padlock, on included articles. Anyone can view proposed edits by clicking on the “pending changes” tab, alongside the “edit” and “history” tabs on a Wikipedia entry. The software that enables the new feature was originally developed for the German version of Wikipedia, where it is called “flagged revisions”. Wikipedia said the decision about which articles to include in the new trial, up to an initial limit of 2,000, will be taken by the Wikipedia community.


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