Blame Wikipedia: ‘Dead’ Senator Hatch trolls Google over solid ‘fact-checking’
“Hi Google? We might need to talk,” Hatch’s office tweeted on Monday night, with a screenshot of the search listing the senator as having died on September 11 last year.
This was followed by a photo of Hatch reading a newspaper, as well as video of him signing some bills last week – overlaid by a Snapchat cartoon of Hatch enjoying some hot dogs that has to be seen to be believed.
Here is a video just last week of Senator Hatch signing bills. pic.twitter.com/A2DtZ1No3z— Senator Hatch Office (@senorrinhatch) July 24, 2018
But wait, there’s more! The office also posted a “proof of life” photo of Hatch preparing for an interview on Capitol Hill, “alive and well.” There were also photos and videos of Hatch meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and US Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, visiting the WWII memorial, and celebrating his 84th birthday in March, with bacon.
Last but not least, Senator Hatch reading the newspaper this morning. pic.twitter.com/MNJuwFUeKA— Senator Hatch Office (@senorrinhatch) July 24, 2018
“The reports of my demise have been greatly exaggerated,” Hatch said, paraphrasing Mark Twain, in a video posted on Tuesday.
A follow-up tweet by his staff revealed that the senator’s “demise” was caused by a Wikipedia edit. “But long after the Wikipedia page was fixed, Senator Hatch remained dead on his Google search so they kindly fixed it manually,” they added.
Pressured by the congressional witch-hunt for “fake news” in the wake of the 2016 US presidential election, Google has sought to fact-check information presented on the internet by using “authoritative” and “unbiased” sources such as Wikipedia. Solid in theory, the approach has been far less successful in practice, as Hatch’s case illustrates. Another infamous instance involved describing Republicans in California as “Nazis.”
Wikipedia has long been vulnerable to malicious editing, as just about anyone can make changes to the online encyclopedia.
Like this story? Share it with a friend!