Wednesday, December 16, 2009

676: A cry for help

Maru the Cat

"XKCD #676 mentions Maru the cat in its title text."

I want you to soak that in for a little while. Someone thought that a reference in the title text was notable enough to put a link into the wiki article. Or, more likely, the editor knew that it wasn't notable, but figured he could sneak one by on a minor article. We've got our eyes on you.

The reverter: "Every time your favorite comic mentions something you don't need to add it to wikipedia."

Friday, December 11, 2009

Recursive self-reference

In popular culture

Alert reader Mike Rosoft has drawn my attention to the above revision. In his words, "following the advice of xkcd, people started creating an article 'In popular culture.' With an 'in popular culture' section, of course." This is, of course, in reference to 446: Wood.

The article was so popular with xkcd fans that it eventually had to become fully protected (courtesy of Mike himself). It now redirects to "Popular culture," which is also a target of xkcd-related vandalism.

Mike is a member of the Counter-Vandalism Unit, which only sounds like the Counter-Terrorism Unit.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

xkcd in popular culture

No one has vandalized the Facebook page in the name of xkcd. Let's enjoy the brief respite with a look at Wikipedia's official stance on xkcd-related vandalism:

Wikipedia:xkcd in popular culture

From the page:

The popular webcomic xkcd is famed for its Internet-savvy plots and references to obscure science and cult fiction. As a result, people often take subjects which xkcd has covered, run off to Wikipedia and add "xkcd covered this" to a section called "In popular culture" or the like.

Most of the time, this isn't actually helpful. Popular webcomics do impact popular culture, but not every time they mention a random subject. The best way to treat "in popular culture" sections of articles is to use them to cover examples which have actually influenced the way that the public looks at the subject. Just adding in any random time that a subject is mentioned in your favourite TV show or comic leads to these sections quickly becoming unmanageable cruft which would be far better placed on TV Tropes or the like.

How to tell when you've hit the big time: your fanbase vandalizes Wikipedia enough that you get your own page for it.

Friday, December 4, 2009

671: Volvo

Volvo [2]

See, guys? It's so funny, we did it twice!

Oh, wait, vandalism isn't funny at all.

670: Up to eleven

Up to eleven

Did you know this had its own Wikipedia page? I didn't! But apparently xkcd fans did, and they decided to vandalize it.