fictional pop star gets buried on wikipedia

Jamie Kane, fictional heartthrob and pop star, is the subject of a new BBC online game where players must solve the mystery of the singer’s death (story). Last Friday, a Jamie Kane article appeared on Wikipedia (original, current) that made no acknowledgement of the boy band singer’s fictional status. Encylopedians soon sniffed out the viral marketing ploy and edited the page, making it a likely candidate for deletion. Today, the BBC admitted that the page had been set up by an employee, but not as part of an official marketing campaign.
Should we be worried about the veracity of information on the web? Of course. On Wikipedia? Definitely. But not because of episodes like this. If anything, this demonstrates how Wikipedia can work quite well for pop culture, and how the community can respond swiftly to so-called vandalism. I say, let Jamie Kane have his page, just not under false pretenses. Let the page incorporate the history of this tiny scandal. That’s one of the things I find most fascinating about Wikipedia – that it can handle that kind of self-awareness.

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