Road Trip: Paterson, New Jersey

Paterson NJ

photo: Tony Fischer, creative commons license

Inspired by the recent charming Jim Jarmusch film Paterson about a city bus driver/poet played by Adam Driver, we drove up there one recent Sunday to take in the sights and cultural offerings.

Paterson’s Great Falls, which drop some two million gallons of Passaic River water a day are about a tenth the height of our sentimental favorite Niagara, but nonetheless quite lovely. If all goes as planned, the area around the falls, now a National Historical Park, will become a full-fledged national park with expanding historical attractions over the next few years.

Alexander Hamilton founded the city. When shown the falls the first time, he was asked what he thought of them. He didn’t say, “lovely,” or “nice view,” he said “power.” (In recognition of the city’s founder, the score to the musical Hamilton plays in the visitor center.) And he was so right.

As in Niagara, a portion of the river’s flow is diverted to power a hydroelectric plant. The power generated by  the falls brought Paterson to prominence as the first planned industrial settlement in the nation and enabled development of its textile, locomotive production, paper, machine tool, and other industries. Many of those brick factories still stand, prime loft-conversion properties. The National Park Service offers guided tours of the falls area, and our good-humored, lively guide (who coincidentally grew up in Paterson) was a gem.

Eventually I hope the Park Service offers tours of Hinchliffe Stadium, home of the Negro Baseball League’s New York Black Yankees, among other teams. The stadium has been preserved as part of the park.

Lambert Castle - Ken Lund

photo (cropped): Ken Lund, creative commons license

The local museums were of considerably less interest, though we enjoyed a trip to Lambert Castle in the Garret Mountain Reservation, home of the Passaic County Historical Society. This little castle was built in the late 1800s by a prominent Paterson silk mill owner and once displayed the owner’s extensive art collection. The house itself was interesting, and has fantastic views of the New York City skyline, but we’d timed our visit to hear a concert by an extraordinary Ukranian pianist, Sophia Agranovich. Hearing her challenging selections played in the castle’s music room, while seated in the three-story atrium where the sound could swell, was a memorable experience.

Finally, we partook of Paterson’s well known multicultural scene, with dinner at a fantastic Middle Eastern restaurant (reportedly the best in the state), Al-Basha, 1076 Main Street. Order the Mazzah appetizer platter!

To Read While Strolling:

The CIA: A Commitment to Illusion

lipstick, makeup

photo: Maria Morri, creative commons license

This week The Cipher Brief offered an inside look at one of the more arcane activities of the CIA’s Office of Technical Services (OTS) through an interview with Jonna Mendez, who worked as the OTS Chief of Disguise, retiring in 1993.

Although she began as a secretary with the Agency, when she took some photography lessons from the OTS, a new career was born. At that time, she was the only woman on the technical side at the Agency, and her first role was as a clandestine photographer. “I had cameras in lipsticks. I had them in key fobs. I’d put a camera in just about anything,” she said. When she started in the OTS, it was creating much of its hardware, like hidden cameras, but today it can buy a lot of what it needs off-the-shelf and upgrade from there.

Mendez later worked in the disguise unit, with the goal of enabling officers “to instantly change the way they looked.” Initially, the staff learned the art and tricks of making masks from the experts in Hollywood and, again, adapted them to CIA requirements. They also worked with Hollywood magicians to deconstruct the sleight-of-hand and distraction methods they use “to consistently and successfully deceive you.” (Read several startlingly entertaining anecdotes about the power of these illusion and distraction tools here.)

The office created a mask for Mendez, in which she “became about 15 years younger, much prettier, with a fabulous hairdo.” Wearing the mask, she met President George H.W. Bush and a group of high administration officials in the Oval Office. The mask was so realistic, no one realized she was wearing one, and she said they were shocked when she took it off.

When agents were given a mask or a disguise, they might initially be reluctant to wear it—“You don’t meet many men who want to put on a wig”—but they’d send them out into the community where they’d learn no one noticed, and they’d seat them near their colleagues in the cafeteria where they’d see no one recognized them. That usually convinced them, Mendez said.

Of course, being in a foreign environment and blending involves more than appearance. She’d teach agents the characteristic behavior of people in the places where they would be operating and what behavior to watch for and mimic.

Jonna is married to Tony Mendez, the CIA’s exfiltration expert who masterminded the escape of six American diplomats from Tehran in 1980, portrayed by Ben Affleck in the movie Argo. Their 2003 books about espionage in the waning days of the Cold War is Spy Dust. Tony’s book about his experiences, The Master of Disguise, contains the episode turned into Argo. You can order them with the affiliate links below.

White America’s Fears Have Deep Roots

Jane McCrea, Indians

The Death of Jane McCrea, by John Vanderlyn (1804)

Corrosive racial fears got a strong start in early American history, according to historian Robert G. Parkinson in a recent talk at the David Library of the American Revolution. While today we may think abstract concepts like “liberty” and “patriotism” motivated colonists to go to war with Britain, Parkinson suggested something quite different in his new book: The Common Cause.

The founding fathers faced two almost insurmountable tasks: uniting the colonists and persuading them the British were a deadly enemy. Many fault lines weakened the prospects for union: North versus South, Tories versus colonials, religious differences, city dwellers versus frontiersmen. Almost half of colonials themselves were English or Welsh. The redcoats were their soldiers, George III was their king. Getting them to unite and take up arms would require a powerful threat.

The Set-Up

The war planners set about inventing one: savage Indians and rebellious slaves. While most students of the Declaration of Independence focus on Jefferson’s stirring opening paragraphs and skip to the end, the Declaration also lays out a long list of grievances against the King, ending with:

“He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes, and conditions.”

Only a strong union, with people working in common cause, could protect against these supposed dangers. Parkinson’s research in colonial newspapers reveals a deliberate and ongoing campaign to exaggerate Indian atrocities, publicize the risk of slave rebellion, and paint the British as ruthlessly allying with these “uncivilized” forces.

He points for example to coverage of the murder of Jane McCrea, murdered by Indians in Upstate New York. McCrea’s death was reported in lurid, if not always accurate, detail in every single colonial newspaper (and was one of the inspirations for James Fenimore Cooper’s The Last of the Mohicans). Only two other news stories—the announcement of the Declaration of Independence and “the shot heard ʼround the world” opening the Revolutionary War—were so universally covered; even the victory at Yorktown, which ended the war, received less media attention, said Parkinson.

A Lasting Legacy of Fear

So deep was the colonials’ fear of the Indians that thirty-five years later, in the War of 1812, outnumbered British troops could still make American forces retreat in disarray by mimicking Indian war cries. The legacy from this dark side of the American Revolution—the fear of white citizens’ order becoming unraveled as Chris Hayes describes it in his new book—continues to plague our country today, sparking the Black Lives Matter movement on one hand and anti-immigration sentiment on the other.

If you’re not familiar with the David Library, it’s a gem, located on the fringes of Washington Crossing Historic Park in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, a boon to my genealogy club, and the host for many prestigious scholars speaking about the Colonial era, the Revolutionary War, and U.S. history 1750 to 1800.

More Arizona Travel Tips

Next time you saddle up for Scottsdale or Sedona, these tips are for you!

Western Spirit: Museum of the West

Scottsdale, Southwest, purse

photo: Vicki Weisfeld

Scottsdale’s two-year-old Museum of the West houses a changing array of artwork, artifacts and memorabilia related to the history and culture of the Southwest. Only two exhibits are permanent: a recreated town street, with the kinds of stuff people needed in the Old West (guns and gambling equipment) and a display of remarkable Indian pottery, in the works.

The special exhibits when I visited included paintings by the Taos Society of Artists and a fantastic collection of fancy saddles, spurs, and other cowboy paraphernalia.

The museum has an enclosed sculpture courtyard, whose walls evoke basket-weaving and the state’s copper-mining history and a nice shop where I bought this handbag.

The museum is in Old Town Scottsdale (3830 North Marshall Way), close to everybody’s favorite 1950s pink palace for desserts, The Sugar Bowl.

McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park

Got the kids? Just a mile or two up Scottsdale Road, this Railroad Park may be the perfect  blowing-off-steam spot after a museum visit and sugar high. The 30-acre park includes playgrounds, a mini-trainride around the property, classic carousel, and loads of fun exhibits. You can tour the actual Presidential Pullman cars used by Presidents Hoover, FDR, Truman, and Eisenhower, which are nothing at all like Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor accommodations, believe me. The museum also boasts a 10,000-square-foot model train exhibit. There’s lots of room to run around, picnic facilities, summer concerts, and snacks too.

Scottsdale Railroad Park

photo: Vicki Weisfeld

Especially noteworthy is the train car emblazoned with coats-of-arms of regions of France. After World War II, the United States sent France a 250-car train packed with donated relief supplies. The following year, the French people reciprocated with the “thank you” (“Merci”) train, which had 49 railway cars like this one. The French people had nothing to spare, yet “generously gave what was most dear to their hearts”—toys, war medals, wedding dresses, musical instruments, handmade lace, and much, much more.

Tuzigoot National Monument

Tuzigoot National Monument, Sedona, Indian

photo: Alan English CPA, creative commons license

The National Park Service pairs this set of ruins, located north of Phoenix near Sedona, with Montezuma’s Castle. The two make an interesting contrast. The Castle (not visited) is a Sinaguan dwelling nestled in a high cliff, whereas Tuzigoot pueblo is located atop a hill with a fantastic 360-degree view of the Verde Valley.

At one time, Tuzigoot was a settlement of some two hundred people near the tree-lined Verde River. (There’s a nice walk along the river from Cottonwood, as well). It was an ideal situation, strategically, though the idea of having to get everything (like water) up that hill is daunting! Today, you can drive it, and will want to do so before the sun gets too hot.

Also near Sedona: Clarkdale’s eye-popping Copper Art Museum

Southwest Reading Adventures

The Crossing by Cormac McCarthy – Reading McCarthy’s bracing prose is a test of nerves, and unforgettable
The Far Empty by J. Todd Scott – one of the best thrillers I read last year, set in west Texas Big Bend Country
The Never-Open Desert Diner by James Anderson – picked up on the recommendation of the crime fiction mavens at The Poisoned Pen (your local bookstore, no matter where you live!)

The Ghostlight Project

Ghost Light

photo: David Nestor, creative commons license

Safety considerations bolstered by a healthy love of superstitions led theaters to always leave a light burning on stage at night. A bulb in a simple stand will do. (I see Fred Astaire or Gene Kelly dancing with one of these, but that may be my imagination). This tradition inspired The Ghostlight Project.

Yesterday at 5:30 in each U.S. time zone, outside some 700 theaters across the country, people gathered to create/shine/be a “light” for values the creative community holds dear, particularly “the values of inclusion, participation, and compassion for everyone.” Here in Princeton about a hundred people and one dog met outside McCarter Theatre Center to hear pledges from the organizations that use the building—McCarter, the Lewis Center for the Arts, and the Princeton Triangle Club—to uphold those values.

Most important, these efforts are not meant to be a one-off. From these initial seeds, many more activities are expected to grow. If you’ve wondered how you can respond in a positive and ongoing way to negative trends in our country, you may want to track what your local theater community is planning going forward. Artists have always led the way, let us hope they can do so again, despite the increasingly uncertain funding future for the arts.

Cincinnati: Pure Fun!

carew tower view, CincinnatiThough we took in some high culture on our recent visit to Cincinnati (more to come on that), some of the sights we saw were plain fun—a tour of the Cincinnati Reds stadium, a nighttime horsedrawn carriage ride through downtown, zipping up to the Carew Tower’s 49th Floor observation deck, and enjoying the holiday displays at the Cincinnati Zoo and Krohn Conservatory.

Great American Ball Park

The storied Cincinnati Reds play here, on the banks of the Ohio River. A wonderfully informative and entertaining guide walked us through the exclusive clubs, down to the field, and “backstage.” It seemed a long way from home plate out to the “batter’s eye,” a black screen required in all ball parks after Chicago Cubs fans (ahem!) would sit right in the batter’s line of sight wearing their white shirts when the opposing team was at bat, and change to black shirts when the Cubs were batting. “All the better to see the ball with, my dear.” You knew about this, right? Lots of interesting memorabilia. Loved “the toothbrush” light stanchions.

great_american_ball_park, Cincinnati

photo: wikimedia commons

The GABP is the Reds third ball park. The team started 135 years ago, and from 1912 played at a stadium called Crosley Field (that Mr. Crosley was a great story!), then moved to Riverfront Stadium in 1970, at the onset of “the Big Red Machine” era, then to the GABP in 2003. Our guide asked, “Who is the only guy to have played all three—Crosley Field, Riverfront Stadium, and here?” Puzzled looks and wracked brains among the baseball trivia nuts in our group. Answer: Paul McCartney.

Below decks we passed the room where the  umpires get ready and take their breaks, identified with an embossed-letter plaque and—confirming the worst fears of every baseball fan—braille.

Cincinnati Zoo

We visited the Cincinnati Zoo at night to see the magical Festival of Lights (video clip)—voted #1 zoo lights display in the country–so the only animals we saw were homo sapiens. As to the lights, there are 2.5 million of them. What more need be said? I wanted to ride the little train but was outvoted. Seasonal snax (hot chocolate, s’mores-n-more).

Krohn Conservatory

Not to be outdone at the holidays, the Krohn Conservatory has an enchanting indoor display full of toy trains and depictions of the city’s landmark buildings and bridges, created from plant stuff—gourds, seeds, and other natural materials. While its varied greenhouse exhibits would be beautiful at any season, I’m a sucker for model trains, so found lots to enjoy. On display until January 8.

krohn-conservatory, Cincinnati

photo: WVXU, Cincinnati

What to Read if You Get Rained Out

  • The Machine: A Hot Team, a Legendary Season, and a Heart-stopping World Series: The Story of the 1975 Cincinnati Reds
  • Crosley: Two Brothers and a Business Empire That Transformed the Nation

But Where Do You STAY in Cincinnati?

cincinnatus

Cincinnatus (photo: Lucas, creative commons license)

Cincinnati takes its name from Roman farmer Lucius Quintus Cincinnatus, who exemplified unwavering service, civic virtue, and a willingness to set aside personal power for the good of the nation.

Similarly, George Washington was admired for stepping aside after two terms as President (while some framers of the Constitution wanted the President to have a lifetime appointment). You may recall this event being recognized in the musical Hamilton, in which Washington sings about “how to say goodbye.”

The Society of the Cincinnati, named in honor of Washington’s act, was set up for veterans of the Continental Army and is the nation’s oldest military hereditary society. Cincinnati was the first major American city founded after the Revolution (1788) and is named for the Society.

Cincinnati an overlooked gem. Even my family’s recent week there didn’t do it full justice. But where do you stay?

Netherland Plaza

Dear reader, no question about it. You stay at the French Art Deco palace, the Netherland Plaza, now a Hilton. The name came about because this landmark hotel is built on the flat land, the Netherland, of the Ohio River’s flood plain below the steep hills for which the city is famous. Its name also came about because the owners originally planned to name it the St. Nicholas Plaza, but ran into legal obstacles after they’d received all the monogrammed linens, china, silverware, and stationery. They needed a “SNP” name—fast. Thus for a while it was the Starrett’s (the builder’s) Netherland Plaza.

netherland-plaza, Art Deco

photo: Vicki Weisfeld

The interior, dining rooms, ballrooms, and every tiny detail are a feast for the eyes. It’s hard to believe such an investment was still doable when construction began in January 1930, a few short months after the big stock market crash.

It was all painted over in the 1960s, of course, in a bid for modernity, but restored lovingly in the early 1980s. Alas, the ice rink in the middle of the restaurant Pavilion Caprice is no more, nor the garage’s automatic (driverless) parking equipment. I’ve seen pictures and cannot imagine how it worked, but it did.

Orchids in the Palm Court is one of only 63 AAA five-diamond restaurants in the United States, and the only one in Ohio. The stunning decorations—murals! marble and rosewood! silver nickel sconces!—would be worth savoring even if the food were less spectacular.

Maybe you won’t luck out like my cousin did and be given the Churchill Suite for a week—yes, Winnie stayed there—but all rooms on the high floors have wonderful views of downtown and the River.

Cincinnatian

Another highly rated hotel is The Cincinnatian, but we spoiled ones found the décor only so-so and the Christmas decorations downright tatty. Still well worth a visit for the delicious high tea, served the third Sunday of every month.

21C Museum Hotel

Now for something completely different. The 21C Museum Hotel is part of a small chain of boutique hotels that feature—and celebrate—contemporary art. We took a tour with a super-knowledgeable guide, and it was thrilling to see so much thoughtful, creative work—painting, sculpture, photography, tapestry, interactive, unclassifiable.

One mesmerizing piece was a clock that uses Big Data to tell the viewer how many x have happened since noon that very day until the current hour and minute. In the ever-changing graphic display, “x” might be “new cases of syphilis” (29 that day),  “dollars spent at US Walmarts” (you don’t want to know), “cases of Svedka vodka sold” (thousands), ad infinitum. Upstairs, a photo exhibit.

Literally hundreds of framed artworks are in the hotel’s Metropole restaurant. Tasty and unusual. Condé Nast travelers named this the “#1 Hotel in the Midwest” in 2014. Loved it lots! Also the yellow penguins’ surprising appearances.

21c-museum-hotel, penguins

photo: Ohio Redevelopment Projects, creative commons license

What to Read in Your Hotel Room

Love Wins: The Lovers and Lawyers Who Fought the Landmark Case for Marriage Equality, co-authored by Jim Obergefell, a Cincinnatian whose same-sex marriage to his dying partner was one of the four lawsuits prompting a 5-4 Supreme Court decision favoring gay marriage. Co-authored by Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post reporter Debbie Cenziper. (Click carefully; other books have the same title.)

Uncouple the Olympic Rings

Olympic games

photo from Beijing Olympics opening ceremony: U.S. Army, creative commons license

The five interlocking Olympic rings symbolize the assembly of the best athletes from around the world in the quadrennial games. This enduring myth of internationalism hides an ugly truth: hardly any country can host the games any more. It’s too damn expensive. It costs between $10 and $20 billion to put on the games, and they generate maybe a quarter of that. The only recent games that broke even were Los Angeles and Barcelona, mostly because they used existing facilities, instead of breaking the bank building new ones.

Even cities that can afford to host the games may not want them. Boston withdrew its 2024 bid in part because the citizens didn’t want the massive disruption and high costs that success would bring. While the costs don’t begin with the arrival of the Olympic torch, nor do they end with its departure. In Beijing, the beautiful bird’s nest stadium costs $11 million a year in maintenance, and the Water Cube requires $1.5 million in subsidies over and above what it brings in as a water park.

Writing in Wired, Megan Greenwell, a former editor of ESPN The Magazine, has a radical suggestion: Pull those rings apart and have a number of “host cities” around the world, not just one. “Send beach volleyball to Rio permanently, where there are actual beaches. Hold the fencing competition in Italy, where many of its gold medalists are born. Move swimming to Australia, where it’s a nationwide obsession. Host soccer in South Africa, where the 2010 World Cup was a moment of national pride. Let each country bear the cost of one set of events at a time instead of dozens.”

Yes, we’d lose the entertaining (and expensive) opening and closing ceremonies, where the athletes of all the countries parade in. Instead, each country could have a small ceremony for the world’s best gymnasts, the world’s best cyclists. I may not be the only person who thinks the rabid jingoism of some of the fans is the Olympics’ worst feature. This approach might put the focus back on sport and on all the athletes’ tremendous sacrifices and achievements rather than on national glory.

The technology to do this is already here with online streaming. Time differences are erased. Viewing events on demand is the future. Someday, my family will actually be able to find equestrian.

Sharing the hosting glory would make an Olympic experience available to attendees from countries who would never be able have it otherwise. Kenyans who could see their runners.  Says Greenwell, “Giving them the chance to witness the Olympics firsthand would finally make the games a truly global event.”

****Blood of the Tiger

photo: Damian Moore, creative commons license

photo: Damian Moore, creative commons license

By J.A. Mills – Tigers are many people’s joy and woe. Beautiful, intelligent apex predators, their numbers in the wild have diminished to a few thousand, and the forces threatening them seem irredeemably entrenched. This book lays out in stunning, infuriating detail the shortcomings and compromises in international policies toward tigers by both governmental and non-governmental organizations, even presumed good guys like the World Wildlife Fund.

Mills’s arguments are well supported by many other organizations and investigations. The nub of the problem is this:

  • Wildlife protection efforts focus on illegal trade, ignoring the legal Asian “tiger farms”
  • “Tiger farms” provide a totally inappropriate environment (group cages) for solitary animals like tigers, and animals raised in them cannot survive, if released into the wild
  • Proponents say tiger farms reduce pressure for poaching wild tigers, which is completely false
  • The availability of tiger products from farmed animals builds demand for these products, increasing the incentive for poaching
  • It is vastly cheaper to poach a tiger (about $10) than to raise it on a farm ($10 per day in food alone)
  • Consumers view products from farmed tigers as inferior to those from wild-killed ones.

Here is what becomes of farmed tigers in China. They are hunted in fake “big game” shoots, their pelts are made into rugs and clothing, their meat is eaten (yes), their carcasses are deboned and the bones steeped in vats of wine, then sold as “tiger wine.”

All this happens behind the smoke screen of “domestic” versus “international” trade, of China’s 1993 ban on tiger bone products, and fake compliance with international wildlife protection regimes.

While Mills’s book gets these points across effectively, it is not very inspiring reading, as it details one failed attempt after another by international organizations and high-level conferences to “save the tiger” in the face of false cooperation by, primarily, Chinese government officials to do whatever they please.

Luxury tiger goods are big business in Asia. What’s true for tiger-derived products is also true for bear paws, bear bile, rhino horn, and elephant ivory. Indiscriminate killing of the latter two species puts them on the path to extinction as well. Some Chinese investors openly say they are stockpiling these animal parts for the time when the animals are extinct and the “value” of their collections will skyrocket.

We in the United States are part of the problem. Inconsistent policies across states allow private individuals to keep wild animals, and there are more tigers in U.S. back yards than in the wild.  Often the conditions they are maintained in are filthy, too small, and in every respect wholly inadequate. You may recall the notorious and tragic episodes that have resulted in Jackson Township, N.J., and Zanesville, Ohio.

I am a regular supporter of Panthera, an organization dedicated to saving the big cats in the wild. Unfortunately, even their promotional material skirts a fundamental problem, by emphasizing the fight against “illegal trade,” when China’s tiger farms are perfectly legal. Mills supports her text with ample footnotes and a short section on “what you can do,”  including strengthening state laws about private tiger ownership in the United States. Her website provides more ideas.

Wikimedia Privacy & You

Privacy

photo: SparkCBC, creative commons license

What is privacy in an era of NSA mega-sweeps, email hacking, and rampant security breaches? Sure, companies all have privacy policies, full of boilerplate, but what do they mean in practice?  The recent Wikimedia Foundation transparency report shines a light on one tiny piece of our potentially massive digital persona. If you use Wikimedia often, as I do, you may realize that it keeps some non-public user-identifiable information. Law enforcement and security agencies may be interested in those data.

Sometimes I joke about this, because, as a writer of crime thrillers, my history of searches would be highly suspicious. It has happened to writers, and  here’s a case where a Long Island family’s Google searches got them into trouble. UK’s Daily Mail has published a looooong list of search keywords and phrases of supposed interest to the Department of Homeland Security. Examples of suspect words: exercise (which I use mainly in the context of “I should get more”), prevention, organized crime (oops! a biggie for me), sick, smart. With such a “broad, vague, and ambiguous list,” as the Electronic Privacy Information Center termed it, adding Wikimedia searches to the data would generate a bazillion hits.

Wikimedia’s Privacy Practices

Wikimedia’s transparency report for the six-month period July to December 2015 is therefore a welcome peek behind the privacy curtain. It receives requests for user data from government, individuals, and corporations, but doesn’t collect much non-public data or retain it for long, so often does not even have what people want. Case closed. But when it does, it will notify you before disclosing any information and may even assist you in fighting “invalid requests.”

Between July and December 2015, Wikimedia received 25 user data requests, 14 of which were from non-government entities. It produced the requested information for only one of them—in response to a court order from France, affecting one user account. This is of course a vanishingly small number of requests compared to what Facebook or Google receive.

Wikimedia also sometimes discloses information to the authorities on its own initiative. That happened a dozen times in the same six-month time period. For example, it alerted authorities to a bomb threat originating from an IP address physically near the target site (an arrest and confession followed);  reported a detailed threat against President Obama; and disclosed a credible suicide threat, with another positive outcome.

The Internet Never (?) Forgets

Also in that period, Wikimedia received 220 legal requests to alter content or remove information, granting none of them. It encourages complainers to work with the community to rectify what they perceive as errors or inaccuracies.

You may know about “Right To Be Forgotten” (RTBF) efforts, authorized under a 2014 European court decision involving Google Spain. Wikimedia opposes this movement, and tends not to grant RTBF requests, though people may do a workaround, by having Wikipedia links removed from search engines. (Here’s an example.)

Dig Deeper

Although Wikimedia’s efforts are a tiny finger in the dike, its commitment to privacy and to letting users know it, is laudable. Read more on this topic:

privacy

graphic: Bernard Goldbach, creative commons license