Reader Adam forwarded us this bizarre email from Patrick Byrne, CEO of Overstock.com.
After announcing deals on watches and exercise equipment, the email invites readers “Take 5 with Patrick, ” which involves the CEO likening Wikipedia to mind-control and Wall Street corruption. Apparently the feud between Wikipedia and Overstock goes way back. Back in late 2006, someone from Overstock edited the company’s Wikipedia page to read like an advertisement. This was reverted by one of the site’s editors. Over the next few months, Overstock’s “director of social media,” Judd Bagley, used dozens of Wikipedia identities to revert Overstock’s entry and harass editors. Overstock also began a site called antisocialmedia.net, run by Bagley. Fed up, Wikipedia banned all Overstock. IP addresses from editing Wikipedia pages. Since then, Byrne has used his “Take 5 with Patrick” postings to disseminate articles such as “Social Media – Hijacking the Discourse,” “How to Handle a Corrupt Reporter,” “A Small Thing Called, the First Amendment,” and “Our Corrupt Federal Regulator the SEC.”