Controversy is brewing on Wikipedia over a suggestion to delete Brendan Burke's entry: some say he isn't "notable" enough to warrant his own page. (And we thought just about anybody could get their own entry!)
Brendan, the gay son of Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke, died following a car accident on Friday. Brendan received international media attention in 2009 after ESPN wrote about his coming out story.
But some argue that Brendan doesn't deserve his own Wikipedia page, based on the website's "notability policy."
On Feb 7, Brendan Burke's Wikipeda page was marked for deletion. As of Monday afternoon, it's still being debated.
Wikipedia user FisherQueen left this comment on the discussion page: "Brendan's chief accomplishments appear to be (a) being related to a notable person;
(b) coming out as gay, and (c) dying young. I have no doubt that he was
a good person, well loved by his friends and family, but Wikipedia is not a memorial, and I'm not convinced that his accomplishments meet Wikipedia's notability criteria."
Some have suggested that Brendan's article should be merged with his father Brian's entry. "[Brendan's entry] runs afoul of all sorts of guidelines: notability isn't inherited, Wikipedia isn't a newspaper," writes Wikipedia user Hairhorn.
Others have defended Brendan's notability. One anonymous commentator had this to say: "Wow, let's just make the life of a man well-known in the homosexual
community disappear. This is so typical - we don't exist because you do
not want us to exist."
Justacat66 says: "His orientation is the key to his importance. He's a rare gay
athlete who had the courage to come out publicly in a super-"masculine"
sport viewed as being homophobic and as having homophobic fans - even
more notably because he is the son of a superstar in that sport, so he
faced even greater pressures. He has been lauded as a role model in the
gay community and for young (and not so young) gay athletes everywhere."