Former Tory chairman Grant Shapps has hit out against Wikipedia after emails he claims could prove he did not edit his own Wiki page were deleted by the organisation.
Shapps, who was widely thought to be the Wikipedia user ‘Contribsx’, an account banned for removing embarrassing sentiment from Shapps’ page while smearing his political rivals, has denied he was controlling the account.
Back in April, Contribsx was shuttered after Wiki editor (and former Liberal democrat activist) Richard Symonds accused the account of ‘sock-puppetry’, creating an account “for an improper purpose, such as to mislead other editors, disrupt discussions, distort consensus or avoid sanctions”.
He alleged the account was controlled by Shapps or “someone acting on his behalf”.
Following the backlash, Shapps requested all the information the Wikipedia Trust had on him under the Data Protection Act to prove there was a campaign to “trump up a story” against him. He was supplied with 80 full pages of data.
However, lawyers representing the Wikipedia Trust said that admin emails on the ban were “deleted in the normal course of business” before the request was issued by Shapps.
Shapps dubbed the deletion “highly suspect”, claiming it could have proven a smear conspiracy against him to the Independent.