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Transphobic Edits Made To Wikipedia Appear To Have Come From Capitol Hill

08/22/2014 10:48 am 10:48:10 | Updated Feb 02, 2016

Computers at the U.S. House of Representatives have been blocked from editing Wikipedia entries after controversial changes were made to transgender pages, including those with information about actress Laverne Cox.

The Hill reports anonymous users associated with an Internet Protocol (IP) address linked to the House were responsible for edits made to Wikipedia pages about trans-related topics. On Wednesday, a description of Cox's "Orange Is the New Black" role was changed from “a real transgender woman” to “a real man pretending to be a woman.” The revision also including a link to an offensive National Review article titled "Laverne Cox Is Not A Woman."

A Wikipedia discussion thread about the changes made from the House IP address claims the transphobic text alterations were made on "official business" and "explicitly authorized by the Representative."

Business Insider notes that it's "impossible to know whether the edits are coming from one or multiple users, but the changes come from an IP address, 143.231.249.138, that has repeatedly been linked to House of Representatives computers."

After Wednesday's incident, the IP address was banned from editing for a month, according to The Hill.

GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis responded to the House's association with such an act.

"It's chilling to think that this dangerous misinformation about transgender Americans could be coming from our nation's Capitol," Ellis said. "At a time when transgender people still face horrific rates of violence, trailblazers like Laverne Cox are helping millions understand that ignorance like this can have life-threatening consequences."​​

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