Rush Limbaugh has been accusing Wikipedia (and others) of running a smear campaign against him. On his radio show on Tuesday, the conservative commentator said this:
If people are trying to destroy your reputation and your credibility, your life and your career by attacking you as a racist, then you have to stand up and fight that. Now, we are in the process behind the scenes working to get apologies and retractions with the force of legal action against every journalist who has published these entirely fabricated quotes about me, slavery, and James Earl Ray. I never said them. We have tracked them. We know where they came from. We don’t know the identity but we know where they came from, a single blogger who posted the stuff on my Wikipedia page in Wiki quotes, unsourced. Wikipedia says, “Well, this is in dispute.” It’s not in dispute. They were never uttered. I never said them.
People are talking about Limbaugh’s Wikipedia inaccuracies on Wikipedia.
According to anonymous commenters, some of the Wikipedia entries that Limbaugh is complaining about have been traced back to an IP address from the law firm Patterson Belknap.
More details after the jump.
According to a comment on SteynOnline (gavel bang: American Thinker Blog), some Rush Limbaugh Wikipedia entries have been made from a Patterson Belknap IP address. The firm has not confirmed this information, so right now it’s still just a widely published rumor. Here’s the comment that claims Rush’s tormentors work at Patterson Belknap:
As I am sure you are aware, the fake Limbaugh quotes have been traced to the Rush Limbaugh Wikiquote page, dating from July of 2005 (see the following link to see when the quotes were added). The Jack Huberman book that most people source for these quotes did not come out until the following year.
The quotes were added by a user with the IP address of 18.104.22.168. This address has been used mostly to make changes to the article about Rush, but also Karl Rove, Sean Hannity, Rush, James Dobson and Sara Palin from 2005 until earlier this year.
While others have noted this in various forums, no one seems to have made the connection that this IP address is used as a gateway by the law firm Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP (see here, for example) that all users from that IP address come from the pbwt.com domain.)
Given the likelihood that Limbaugh will sue over this, I find it interesting that the source of these bogus quotes is probably a lawyer…
If it is a shared IP address, there is little chance of finding the specific individual that entered the disputed commentary, even if it is true and Patterson Belknap cooperates. We know a lot of firms use shared IP addresses, and we know many of our commenters take advantage of that to post unhelpful statements.
But Rush Limbaugh certainly deserves the protection of libel laws. We’ll see if Limbaugh asks Wikipedia or Patterson Belknap to do more to find the person that made the allegedly false entries on Limbaugh’s page.
State-Run Media Scum Smear Rush Using Fabricated Quotes [Rush Limbaugh Show]
Mark’s Mailbox [SteynOnline]
The Search for the Wikipedia Libelist [American Thinker Blog]