When, If Ever, Do Scandals Belong On A Scholar’s Wikipedia Page?


The various sexual harassment scandals and other controversies involving some well-known philosophers raise the question of how to determine whether information regarding such events is to appear in reference works about them, especially the world’s most popular reference, the constantly updated and largely crowd-sourced Wikipedia.

Consider the current Wikipedia entry for Thomas Pogge, who has been in the news lately concerning allegations of sexual harassment and unprofessional behavior. It is squeaky clean. Not one sentence fragment in the entire entry, as of this moment, alludes to any of this news. Perhaps that is how it should be, for now, or perhaps not? I’m not arguing one way or another here.

A look at the “talk page” for Pogge’s entry reveals some of the discussion taking place behind the scenes (apparently this part of the exchange took place in May):

Pogge wikipedia talk screenshot

A more recent discussion is more heated:

Pogge wikipedia talk screenshot 2

Respectful, non-libelous discussion welcome.

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