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La Voce di New York Under Attack by a Hacker on Wikipedia

Our newspaper has been targeted on the digital encyclopedia by the lies of “Modulato”, a character both mysterious as well as anonymous

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Dear readers, in our profession of journalism, to which La Voce di New York dedicates itself every day, it can occur that we stumble across oddities and peculiarities. Nevertheless, I would have never thought that I’d be witness to a digital attack aimed at putting into question our very existence or the “encyclopedic” value of your daily newspaper on Wikipedia. This attack caught our attention. Who could have any interest in discrediting us without any basis? Who would be interested in requesting that our Wikipedia page be deleted?

La Voce di New York has opened an investigation which will continue for the next weeks. In the meantime, we know that it was an anonymous hacker that goes by the name Modulato, who has put into motion this mechanism to discredit us and indeed “delete” us from Wikipedia. We don’t know who this person(s) is. From our research, we still have not been able to discover Modulato’s motivation, and of the digital storm that that this person has unleashed against us. And in the end, the unscrupulousness of their modus operandi and of their creation of  “fake news” prevailed in conferring the illusion of reality to a series of lies that were ably packaged on a technical level. The consequence? Our Wikipedia page in English was deleted last week.

We know that the strict technicalities that regulate the publishing of articles on the most authoritative digital encyclopedia of the moment follows its own logic precisely to protect Wikipedia from fake news and from instrumental use for illegitimate causes. We noticed, however, that the consequences of certain technical rigidities can also have a negative effect. To assert that La Voce does not exist due to a lack of prestige — when we have hundreds of thousands of monthly contacts and when we play an important and recognized role within an international community – is the confirmation of how much the digital economy in general can be brought to irreconcilable paradoxes with reality. Modulato has now also launched a campaign on Wikipedia’s Italian site, seeking consensus to delete our Wikipedia page in Italian by Sunday, which is the date by which this debate that has been going on for several days will end.

It is possible that he will be successful yet again. But to reassure all of you, dear readers, we will continue, as we have always done, to publish on a daily basis, which is the first confirmation that we exist in the moment in which we will be deleted. We have already received your comments or suggestions, or words of solidarity — even this concrete proof that we exist, but that nevertheless does not bear any weight for Wikipedia. Continue to write to us.  We will continue with our investigation to expose Modulato and their motivations, making sure to keep you informed step-by-step on our progress to re-establish the normal parameters of truth that – unfortunately and often present on very credible digital platforms – continue more and more to have vague boundaries. Allow me to also thank the Board of VNY Media for the solidarity that it has demonstrated towards the newspaper, our journalists and collaborators, and towards me personally.


Wikipedia, A Fragile Encyclopedia

After 8 years since its inception, and during its editorial relaunch (also in mobile format), La Voce di New York has come under an attack without precedence in these days by a hacker who is trying to discredit our Wikipedia page by using fake news and maintaining that we practically don’t exist., founded by Stefano Vaccara in 2013, was incorporated under VNY Media Corp. in 2016, becoming the owner of the online daily newspaper.

Since June 2020, VNY MediaCorp./, headquartered at 230 Park Avenue – 21st Floor, New York, NY 10169, and with its newsroom located in Room S-301 of the United Nations building’s International Press Corp., formed a new Board of Directors with Giampaolo Pioli as President/CEO. Stefano Vaccara continues to be the editor-in-chief of the paper.  

An anonymous hacker that hides behind the name “Modulato”, has waged a battle regarding the legitimacy of our Wikipedia page, maintaining that we are not an online daily newspaper, and that we do not have an editorial office on the third floor of the United Nations building.

It is false. It is irresponsible, but the administrators at Wikipedia (which we consider to be a highly significant encyclopedia), took down our page in English, without carrying out any verification process, and they may also do the same to our page published in Italian.  

We not only exist, but we will continue to exist, publishing our daily online newspaper 365 days a year, as we have always done, since the day it was founded. Today, La Voce di New York is growing, and boasts 200,000 unique monthly contacts, and is present on Facebook and Instagram. It also publishes a newsletter each Friday, Crossroads, which reaches over 9,000 subscribers, and has over 19,000 articles in its archives which we make available to our readers. Both of our informative products reach Italian and Italian American communities present in New York, Italy and around the world. We have a staff of 9 people, between editors, photographers, translators and webmasters, who work alongside over 80 collaborators  — journalists, as well as Italian and American specialists, many of whom are also shareholders.

The reasons for this attack by a hacker like “Modulato” are beyond us. We consider them a mystery, but it is important to report them because this could happen to others in the future, and in some manner does expose Wikipedia to a certain fragility with regard to how it verifies information prior to publishing a page or deciding to remove it. Our page in English on Wikipedia has been active for almost 2 years.

La Voce di New York will continue to investigate to discover who is hiding behind “Modulato”. We want to understand the motive behind such attacks to our credibility, and why they’ve been launched against us. The investigation continues, and we are convinced that we will soon be able to identify this digital plague-spreader, that with the use of fake news was able to influence Wikipedia and put into question not only the existence and prominence of, but also the legitimacy of its editor-in-chief, Stefano Vaccara. We will inform not only our readers as to what we uncover, but also Wikipedia, so that it may continue to preserve its criteria for credibility to remain crystal clear and verifiable. 

– Board of Directors, VNY Media Corp.


The Testimony of an Authoritative Reader

Dear readers, we have noticed that an author of books on digital problematics, as well as a media expert who lives in Washington D.C., Andreas Sandre, joined in the technical debate on Wikipedia. His latest book, Digital Diplomacy has been an international success.

We are grateful to Andreas Sandre for his distinguished and authoritative intervention, offering words affirming La Voce’s credibility. We also know that someone erased his message twice on Wikipedia, but that was then restored to the site. Here it is:

 {{Keep}} As author of a book on the digital age, and an Italian who lives in Washington, D.C., I’m entering into this discussion to clear up some points regarding the relevance of the entry “La Voce di New York” within Wikipedia. La Voce is relevant for important reasons:

1) For years, articles published by La Voce di New York (with relative links to its website) continue to be used by numerous authors present on Wikipedia as a source, and reference notes for numerous Wikipedia pages, amongst which are Wikipedia profile pages of prominent people, such as the singer-songwriter [[Pino Daniele]], the [[Gucci]] group, the inventor [[Guglielmo Marconi]].

2) La Voce di New York and the role of its founder have been recognized for years by numerous academic institutions such as New York University, which has hosted the founder of La Voce di New York as moderator or speaker at multiple events; Montclair State University, of which its Institute of Italian and Italian American Studies has collaborated with La Voce di New York on an educational journalism project; and the City University of New York for the series Italian-Americans in Journalism.

3) La Voce di New York is recognized and listed as a “newspaper” (verified) by the American website, Muck Rack, an important source for journalists, communicators and PR.

4) La Voce di New York’s relevance can also be deduced by numerous interviews published on its site, including many representatives of the Italian government, amongst which former minister Sergio Costa and the Undersecretary to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Manlio Di Stefano. I recommend keeping La Voce, seeing its encyclopedic relevance, its use as a digital source, and its role within the Italian American community in the USA.

Andreas Sandre

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