Examples of Bias in Wikipedia: Sports

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Tim Tebow

This article lists examples of Bias in Wikipedia, related to sports:

  1. From 2008 until October 2014, the Wikipedia article on the 1978-79 Boston College Basketball Point Shaving Scandal named Joe Streater as one of the participating players.[1] However, he was not even on the team that year. He was inserted into the article by an anonymous IP address and the erroneous information was left until the press publicized the error.[2]
  2. Wikipedia's biographies of Scottish soccer players are so notoriously biased that the new General Manager of the Hiberian Football Club, Alan Stubbs, told the press, "We can't be scouting players any more on the back of a Wikipedia page and one individual's opinion. I’ll want background checks and medical histories."[3]
  3. On December 14, 2014, the Dallas Cowboy's Dez Bryant successfully played against Eagles' defensive back Bradley Fletcher. In response, Wikipedia changed Fletcher's biography to describe his position as "Dez Bryant's bitch" and added a paragraph, which said, Fletcher "displayed his poor mechanics, speed, and talent."[4][5][6][7][8]
  4. The University of Pittsburgh's athletic director, Steve Pederson, may be unpopular, but Wikipedia changed the infobox about its athletic program to list "Satan" as the athletic director.[9][10]
  5. Given that one of Wikipedia's co-founders, Jimbo Wales, is an atheist, it is not particularly surprising that Wikipedia is particularly biased against prayer in school, as illustrated by its description of Coach Marcus Borden's attempts merely to bow his head while his football players pray. Wikipedia's biased description disparages community support of Borden by saying it is "regardless of federal law"; the entry says he returned to coaching as urged by the community "ostensibly" to assert a right to bow his head during prayer.[11]
  6. Emmanuel Sanders of the Denver Broncos got a concussion from a particularly hard hit during November 16 and December 8 games. In response, Wikipedia reported his death.[12][13][14][15][16][17]
  7. Following Tim Howard's brilliant performance as goalie in a World Cup game against Belgium, Wikipedia change the "Secretary of Defense" article to replace the name and photo of Chuck Hagel with that of Howard.[18]
  8. On August 26, 2013, the Buffalo Bills named Jeff Tuel as its week 1 starting quarterback in light of the injury of its primary quarterback. However, at that point, Tuel did not have a Wikipedia biography, which drew criticism from the sports media. A page was added on that date.[19]
  9. The Wikipedia article "Beatosu and Goblu" glorifies the efforts of a University of Michigan alumnus to ridicule Ohio State University on the official state highway map of Michigan.[20]
  10. Wikipedia had a fabricated, detailed account of the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship before the season began.[21]
  11. Following Michael Phelps gold medal victory in the 2016 Olympics in the 200-meter butterfly, the Wikipedia biography of South African swimmer Chad Le Clos was modified to report that Le Clos "died by the hands of Michael Phelps, being literally blown out of the water by the greatest American since Abraham Lincoln."[22]
  12. Most of the Wikipedia's Paralympics coverage is the work of Laura Hale, a paid editor who is prone to mistakes and bias. For example, when the Russian Paralympic team was banned from the 2016 Rio Games for performance-enhancing drug offenses, there was no mention of it in the Russian Paralympic Committee article.[23]


  1. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=1978%E2%80%9379_Boston_College_basketball_point_shaving_scandal&diff=prev&oldid=231463815
  2. Koo, Ben. "Guilt By Wikipedia: How Joe Streater became falsely attached to the Boston College point shaving scandal", Oct 9, 2014. Retrieved on October 13, 2014. 
  3. McDermott, Scott. "We won't be signing players based on their Wikipedia descriptions anymore, says Hibs boss Alan Stubbs", Daily Record, August 17, 2014. Retrieved on August 18, 2014. 
  4. Bradley Fletcher Wikipedia Page Changed After Loss to Cowboys (Pic). totalprosports.com (December 15, 2014). Retrieved on December 15, 2014.
  5. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Bradley_Fletcher&diff=638157096&oldid=638156965
  6. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Bradley_Fletcher&diff=prev&oldid=638156942
  7. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Bradley_Fletcher&diff=prev&oldid=638156868
  8. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Bradley_Fletcher&diff=prev&oldid=638156546
  9. Satan employed by Pitt. Per Wikipedia. (December 13, 2014). Retrieved on December 15, 2014.
  10. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Pittsburgh_Panthers&diff=prev&oldid=637798626
  11. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_Brunswick_Public_Schools#Controversy
  12. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Emmanuel_Sanders&diff=637120854&oldid=637093214
  13. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Emmanuel_Sanders&diff=prev&oldid=637078923
  14. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Emmanuel_Sanders&diff=prev&oldid=636842706
  15. "LOOK: Wikipedia says Emmanuel Sanders is dead, Sanders disagrees", CBS Sports, November 18, 2014. Retrieved on December 18, 2014. 
  16. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Emmanuel_Sanders&diff=prev&oldid=636518634
  17. Foss, Mike. "Emmanuel Sanders refutes Wikipedia's claim that he died last night", USA Today, November 17, 2014. Retrieved on December 18, 2014. 
  18. Scott, Nate. "Someone changed the Wikipedia entry for U.S. Secretary of Defense to 'Tim Howard'", USA Today, July 1, 2014. Retrieved on December 18, 2014. 
  19. Chase, Chris. "Buffalo Bills' potential Week 1 starter didn't have Wikipedia page", August 26, 2013. Retrieved on December 24, 2014. 
  20. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Beatosu_and_Goblu&oldid=630877428 Retrieved January 3, 2015
  21. "Wikipedia said Florida would lose to Syracuse in 2017 national championship game", SEC Country, August 5, 2016. Retrieved on August 10, 2016. 
  22. "A savage edit is made to Chad Le Clos' Wikipedia page after he fails to medal", CBS Sports, August 10, 2016. Retrieved on August 10, 2016. 
  23. Russian Paralympic Committee. Retrieved on August 10, 2016.