After Claiming Rabin Murder Was Not Political, Israeli Lawmaker Gets Wikipedia-bombed

The online encyclopedia locks the Hebrew-language entry for lawmaker David Bitan for edits after adjectives surge in page.

Likud MK David Bitan, May 2015.
Likud MK David Bitan, May 2015. Knesset

Likud coalition whip David Bitan, now already infamous for saying that Yitzhak Rabin’s assassination was “not political," has come under cyberattack on his Hebrew-language Wikipedia page.

His biography was found on Sunday to have been anonymously edited to read “chairman of the Likud faction and an idiot.” The entry was corrected a few minutes later, but the revisions kept on coming with shares all over Facebook and Twitter.

Some added adjectives were more flattering, such as the title of Dr. although Bitan holds only a bachelor’s degree.

After hours of a cat-and-mouse struggle with cyber-vandals, Wikipedia editors clamped restrictions on the edit key for Bitan’s page. Through November 12 only those designated as “automatic editors” may make any changes to his page.

Recent studies and articles have found political controversy to be a key motive behind Wikipedia editing wars in the English, Hebrew, German and French language sites.