Every time I see a squirrel squashed, a house painted yellow, or a discarded condom on a sidewalk, I wonder what sort of human might have perpetrated such a deed.
Was it someone angry, someone merely tasteless, or someone who simply hasn't been educated in even the most basic elements of human decorum?
I found myself with somewhat similar feelings on discovering that a human being, or beings, took to the Wikipedia page for Microsoft's Windows 8 and attempted to pervert the course of truth.
For a random visit to this page revealed this notice from the Wikipedia masters: "Editing of this article by new or unregistered users is currently disabled due to vandalism."
In Wikispeak, vandalism means "any addition, removal, or change of content in a deliberate attempt to compromise the integrity of Wikipedia."
Clearly, the suggestion was that people were marauding their way onto the page in order to suggest falsities about Windows 8.
Microsoft's latest operating system hasn't ripped and roared its way to the summit.
Some regard it as a complete failure, believing it to be poorly designed. The difficult and rapid movement of people away from PCs doesn't help either.
The question is, therefore, what facts someone vandalizing the Wikipedia page wanted to alter.
Were the infiltrators Microsoft apologists who wanted to Microsoften the blow? Or might they have been gloating fanpersons of another brand who were desperate to jig at a Windows 8 wake?
It was inevitable, therefore, given my sense of pained confusion, that I would contact Wikipedia to ask whether Montagues or Capulets were involved.
I know that people like to alter the Wikipedia pages of real human beings, in order to make those human beings look better or worse.
It's the incursion onto something as theoretically innocuous as the Windows 8 page that seemed so very troubling. Especially when the page is remarkably thorough.
A spokesman from the Wikimedia Foundation helped me reach the core of the vandalism. Wikipedia keeps a record of it all.
Essentially, much of Windows 8 page was erased and replaced with this in the reviews section:
Everyone hated Windows 8. The interface was useless, it looked like a drag queen on steroids. And the operating system is extremely unstable on mobile devices, which would guaranteeing angry shoppers who has used a mobile device that ran on a Windows OS before. Save yourselves and use either an iPad or an Android mobile device.
More Technically Incorrect
You might imagine that this was swiftly noticed.
However, the vandal was undeterred.
He or she (and the IP address strongly suggests it's someone from a college in the Miami-Dade area of Florida) wiped the whole Windows 8 page, offering instead: "window 8 is a Flop Programme....All editors ki maa ki chooooot......saaley Rundi baaz."
Currently, the page is on a very low-level lockdown, just in case this wag (or any other) chooses to return to the scene once more to offer edited guidance.
The Wikimedia Foundation doesn't chase those who perpetrate such amusements. It seems to accept it as part of the encyclopedia of life.
Indeed, on occasion, there can occur truly witty forms of vandalism.
In March, for example, LeBron James rather humiliated Boston's Jason Terry with a dunk.
Almost immediately, Terry's Wikipedia page read: "Born September 15 1977. Died March 18 2013 9.01pm."
The poster added: "The cause of death is being viciously dunked on."