Is “The Journal of The Wolfe Pack” a reliable source?

WikNYC_Picnic_2_-_Newyorkbrad - ira brad matetsky
New York Brad

User: Mdfalco is a business partner buddy of New York Brad. He was last seen fixing up New York Brad’s Wikipedia article,  polishing the article for New York Brad’s law firm, and adding links to his publication Green Bag Press.

Not content to rest on his laurels, Mdfalco has now cited New York Brad as an expert on Rex Stout. (They are both members of “The Wolfe Pack” fan club.) The edit in question concerns the writer’s first published story, believed to be from 1912.  Mdfalco has changed the footnote.  Previously the footnote said:

As extensive searches for an early story by Stout titled “Their Lady” have been unsuccessful, it appears the story may have been published under another title.

MdFalco has changed this to:

The solution to the mystery of this missing story was finally revealed by [[Ira Brad Matetsky]] in “The ‘Their Lady’ Mystery Solved” in The Gazette–The Journal of the Wolfe Pack, Fall 2018, p. 7.

So, no real information about the missing story. Just a promotional item about the club newsletter and a teaser about New York Brad.  No link, no ref.

Okay, so maybe it’s one of those open source thingies, all about providing information as a public service, and you can read it online. And maybe it’s peer-reviewed, with the type of editorial board that would make it a WP:RS reliable source for Wikipedia purposes?

Nope.

The full name of the newsletter is “The Gazette—The Journal of The Wolfe Pack“. They publish twice a year, and you can get a 2-year subscription for  $35.00.  But wait, the newsletter is for members only. “Join now to start receiving your copy.” But if you look at the membership page says it’s $40. It says you have to “print, fill out, and mail the membership application with a check for $40.00“.  A check?  I can’t remember the last time I saw one of those.  And snail mail!

And it may take a while:

“Initial processing of memberships submitted by mail may take a few weeks since someone must go to the USPS to pickup check, then deposit check and update mailing list.”

LOL, a P.O. Box, but it looks like they do have PayPal.

Lots of “click here to buy” Amazon stuff.  And Ira’s stepmother Amanda Matetsky gets a little free promotion on their book list.

Oh, but there are more fees:

The cost of events is not included in the membership fee. Membership fees are used only for Gazette publication/mailing and mailings of newsletters.

Really, they mail dead-tree newsletters?  Now that is really 1912. Not even an option to log in and read it online?

And what is the cost of these “events”?  As they say, if you have to ask, you can’t afford it.

But hey, why not use Wikipedia to promote membership in your private club, with access to your private newsletter. The North Face got away with it.

Wikipediocracy just ran a hit piece on a woman who they allege might have complained privately about harassment by a male Wikipedian. Might not even be true, but they ran her off the project with their pogrom, just as surely as a SanFranBan. Not the first time either. Let’s see if the Wikipediocrazies are willing to touch this one, or if it will be Fanboy City.

[Just noticed this: he goes on to add “Their Lady” was published as “Her Forbidden Knight”.  But everyone agrees that that story was published in 1913, not 1912.  In fact the list here shows seven other stories earlier than that one, five of them from 1912.  And this material is copyright 2015 by Ira Brad Matetsky (aka New York Brad, who added a commentary so as to tweak the copyright date) so it’s not exactly new material, but it doesn’t seem to have made it into the Wikipedia article. What kind of sourcing is this?  If this was a biography of a woman scientist, it would be at deletions already, or at least would have acquired a hostile template or two.]

4 thoughts on “Is “The Journal of The Wolfe Pack” a reliable source?

  1. It’s a good catch, to be sure, and I agree about the reliability of the source… but it’s not *quite* the same level of personal benefit being gained by the Wikipedian in question, is it? The would-be Rex Stout fan would have to scroll all the way down the page and read some rather dry explanatory text about the obscure story before even getting to the mention of the “Wolfe Pack,” and once that’s accomplished, he/she has to have enough interest to actually seek out the (unlinked) organization in question and make the decision to join it despite the exhorbitant fees. One might even argue that he/she then has to also feel ripped-off by the organization in some way to make a legitimate case for malfeasance.

    Whereas the “woman alleged to have complained privately about harassment” – and bear in mind this is not *sexual* harassment, but administrative harassment that’s fairly common among Wikipedians – evidently received thousands of dollars in grants and travel expenses from the Foundation over the course of several years, and was a paid “Wikipedian in Residence” as well, in addition to being married to the Chair of the Foundation’s Board of Trustees. We may never see hard evidence that *proves* nepotism or other forms of favoritism was used to get the administrative harasser banned, but to suggest the *appearance* of those things isn’t there is just blinkered in the extreme. (And there have been no WMF denials.)

    Moreover, the “hit piece” is a discussion thread, not an “article” per se, just in case anyone might get the wrong idea. I don’t like us being made out to be the “BADSITE” in this situation just because everyone else is too worried about their precious wiki-reputations (or how it might affect their Personal-Sh*tlist Theory of Everything) to accept what’s directly in front of them. In fact I’m pretty angry about it. But facts are facts, and in this case there’s just no other explanation that makes sense.

  2. Except that it’s all conjecture and innuendo, and no facts.

    Photos of ordinary people – women – smiling and having a pleasant time, their own photos repurposed with snarky and lewd captions, “Jesus fuck!”, “I mean, what the actual fuck?!”, “Was this a long distance booty call?”

    How would you like it if someone did that to your mother.

    Look, she’s smiling for the camera, all innocent and trusting, and look what you people have done, sexualizing everything and making crude comments.

    And I did not put up the worst ones, out of respect for the people involved, volunteers who were just trying to build a movement, engaging in good faith.

    Don’t forget the board is all volunteers too, these are not paid positions. And celibacy is not a prerequisite, neither is dating prohibited.

    What I saw was an application for funds that was actually denied. You haven’t gone through Pine’s — or anyone else’s grant applications like that, inviting mockery…wonder why not. It is very very clear that this type of hit job goes way beyond your stated motivations, there is something very very personalized in it.

    This is just beyond disgusting.

    And as moderator you were the one who approved and even encouraged the vigilante action.

  3. The fact that the two of them are married (and have been since about 2014-15) is no longer “conjecture,” that’s been firmly established. And we’ve definitely mocked and criticized other WMF grant-seekers before, even the ones who are just looking for free trips to Wikimania. Some of them even had their own mind-map charts…
    As for the rest, one person’s “vigilante action” is another person’s “amateur investigative journalism.” These are the times we live in. If ferreting out high-level lies, nepotism (which was actually right there on the mind-map chart), and misuse of donor funds – not to mention shoddy editing – means we get accused of bashing a woman just because she’s a woman, then I’m sorry, but that’s just how it has to be, I guess.

  4. Accusing someone without proof is not any kind of responsible “journalism”. Putting a label of “what the actual fuck” on someone’s photo does not prove they are a liar, misusing funds, or anything else. You cannot make a fabrication true by repeating it over and over. And what possible legitimate purpose could be served by digging into someone’s personal life. You didn’t even do that with Kevin Gorman, who you also treated shamefully

    This needs to go right next to the “Wikipedia has cancer” school of financial analysis. Except that it’s about a real person.

    And I doubt if you’ll be publishing any photos of NYB or his $300,000 a year business associates labeled “Jesus fuck” anytime soon.

    You guys are more about punching *down*.

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