‘Hierarchical, Biased:’ Elon Musk Slams Wikipedia, Offers $1 Billion to Change Name to ‘Dickipedia’

Elon Musk celebrates Texas

X/Twitter owner Elon Musk slammed Wikipedia dysfunction on Monday, condemning the site for the biases of its hierarchy of elite editors, rejecting comparisons to his platform’s Community Notes feature, which does not have different tiers of editors. Musk couldn’t help trolling Wikipedia boss Jimmy Wales, responding with the site’s regular plea for donations with an offer of $1 billion if it changes its name to “Dickipedia.”

“Wikipedia is inherently hierarchical and therefore subject to the biases of higher ranking editors, independent of their merits,” said Musk.

The SpaceX and Tesla CEO went on to explain that Community Notes, a feature on X/Twitter which allows for the addition of fact checks and context notes by users through a consensus-based process, requires agreement between people with different biases.

Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales

Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales ( Jamie McCarthy /Getty)

“Community Notes requires people with historically different points of view, based on how they have rated and written Notes, to agree in order for Notes to be shown to the public,” said Musk. “All code and data is open source, so you can recreate the outcome yourself.”

Musk went on to say that not even his contribution to a Community Note would not outweigh another user’s.

“Crucially, even I, as the controlling shareholder of the company, cannot change the outcome of a Note. This is an extremely fundamental difference.”

Musk was responding to a post from venture capitalist Chamath Palihapitiya, praising Notes for providing an alternative to government-backed censorship.

“When anyone can write whatever they want (free speech), a sense-making layer is so useful because it can sort out the facts quickly and simply (Community Notes). This allows free speech to flourish while minimizing dis/mis-information,” said Palihapitiya.

“At scale, this is probably *the* feature that stops government censorship and keeps the responsibility for content moderation in the hands of the crowd vs in the hands of a closed room of bureaucrats.”

Palihapitiya also criticized Wikipedia.

“Wikipedia is full of troll / bot editors for biographies and subjective topics. So many times it makes it seem impossible to get the truth accurately reflected at all times,” said Palihapitiya.

“Any ‘victim’ can update any profile with any nonsense on a continuous basis. It’s still a valuable place but the edge cases are poorly handled.”

Commenting on Musk’s post, tech lawyer Preston Byrne noted that Wikipedia’s system also incentivizes editors to accumulate clout and influence, whereas there is Community Notes contain no such ranking system that contributes to the development of elites.

“The real issue with Wiki is that for the editors, being a Wikipedia editor and racking up cred like Barnstars is *their entire life.* One thing that’s dope about Community Notes is the absence of ranking and clout for people who get it right,” said Byrne.

Musk, known for trolling on his own platform, offered Jimmy Wales $1 billion to change the name of the site to “Dickipedia.”

Allum Bokhari is the senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News. He is the author of #DELETED: Big Tech’s Battle to Erase the Trump Movement and Steal The Election.


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