Wikipedia recently banned the Church of Scientology and its associates from contributing to the collaborative reference site. But maybe this is what the Scientologists wanted Wikipedia to do.

As Evgeny Morozov wrote on the Foreign Affairs website, the ban marked the first time an entire social group was banned from contributing to Wikipedia. As such, the cult can now credibly argue it has been censored and repressed

We'll see a dozen anti-Wikipedia web-sites set up by Scientology to promote its own version of "censored truth". Unfortunately, Wikipedia's decision would only make their claims of unjust persecution easier to believe; after all, how else to explain that they were banned from a web-site that "anyone can edit"?

...The Wikipedia admins definitely need a primer on the Streisand effect.

A Columbia law professor, Tim Wu, told the Associated Press Wikipedia's decision should be closely examined.

"Wikipedia has more power over speech than many governments," he said. "We have to make sure that they're being reasonable."

Of course, things look quite different for those up against what one ex-Scientologist described as the group's "machine" of Web warriors, each creating a host of virtual identities from which to launch online campaigns. Wikipedia's arbitration committee voted in its ban unanimously, 10-0. Winning the war with determined Scientologists was presumably more important to Wikipedia than losing any one PR battle.

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