Editors for Wikipedia are struggling over how to proceed in adding a "controversy section" to actress Lena Dunham's page on the site following the recent revelations in her book and the resulting threat of legal action against TruthRevolt for quoting its passages.
A page section titled "Talk: Lena Dunham" has been set aside by the online encyclopedia for its editors to discuss "improvements to the Lena Dunham article." In it, the discussion turns to Dunham's threatened lawsuit.
It begins with a link to Ben Shapiro's article titled, "Lena Dunham Threatens To Sue Truth Revolt For Quoting Her," cited by user Lkiode43 who states: "Dunham has threatened to sue TruthRevolt for quoting her book. She claims that the information in the quotes is false. However, the quotes are an exact and accurate copy of what was in her book."
Another editor, with the handle Grayfell, responds saying the article's title "grotesquely misrepresents the case" and writes it off as "gossip." Grayfell later states that the TruthRevolt story does not fall under Wikipedia's guidelines as a reliable source:
TruthRevolt is not a reliable source for contentious BLP (Biographies of living persons) content…Do we really need to include 'several right wing news sites claimed that passages in Dunham's book may have indicated that she was sexually abusive towards her sister, an interpretation which is refuted by psychologists and analysts, and denied by both Dunham sisters'? followed by forty-five different newsblog sources which mostly parrot the same few tweets? What a waste of time.
An "unsigned comment" seemed to either mock Grayfell or support his accusation. It read, "'Reliable source' should not be read to indicate an exclusively left-wing bent."
Several other anonymous editors fell on the inclusion side of a controversy section being added to Dunham's page. They wrote:
More substantial [sources]? CNN, ABC, LA Times, The Independent, Time, Sydney Morning Herald, Jerusalem Post, Toronto Sun and the Washington Post just to name a few of the 455 plus news outlets that have run an article on this in the last 24 hours are not substantial enough media?
It's by her own admission that she has done these things, she even likened herself to a sexual predator, to paraphrase the writing in her own book. Is it really libelous if she is her own source of this, and admits to having done it? While it would be good to wait and see how this plays out and develops, I definitively think this would be worthy of being included in the article at some point.
But Grayfell insists, "It's hardly a major story."
In addition to labeling TruthRevolt as an unreliable gossip site, Breitbart News was also called out for covering Dunham's refusal to prosecute a man she claims raped her in college. Grayfell wrote, "Breitbart is a widely visited website, although hardly a lock-solid source." "A quick search through Wikipedia:Reliable sources/Noticeboard shows that Breitbart is constantly being called out for having a poor history of fact-checking and reliability," the editor added.
One anonymous user responded: "Are any sources 'lock solid'? Please familiarize yourself with rhetorical analysis, logos, the premise of 'knowledge as consensus', and general epistemological premises. Wikipedia is not a bastion of whitewashed knowledge. Sorry."
It is pointed out that Dunham's book, Not That Kind of Girl, already has its own article that includes a controversy section that mentions National Review and TruthRevolt's coverage of what the book details. Several psychologists are quoted saying Dunham's behavior she described in her book at 7-years-old was "age-appropriate" and "not an indication of abuse." It is noted that Dunham has apologized for her "insensitive" wording and denies any claims of sexually abusing her younger sister.
No decision has been made for adding this to Dunham's personal article on Wikipedia.