Pacific Standard looks at a study from researchers at Chicago's Kellogg School of Management and USC that searched Wikipedia for the words "Democrat" and "Republican." Of those, they filtered out the entries that did not pertain to U.S. politics. They then scanned the entries for partisan language.
‘Obamacare,’ ‘death panels,’ ‘civil rights,’ ‘illegal immigration,’ ‘estate taxes’: these phrases are used by the parties deliberately to appeal to their respective constituents very specifically. That’s what makes them such a great signal for measuring bias, because they come laden with so much presumed slant.
The scan found fewer of the phrases appearing over the decade-plus of the site’s existence. The Wikipedia of 2002, however, had a distinct Democratic tilt, the study found. Why?
Early broadband users tended to come from a specific education group, again mostly college kids with fast on-campus Internet connections…. or perhaps it was just the luck of the draw that a group of highly opinionated Democrats were among the first to be contributing to Wikipedia—perhaps because they were more interested in open systems.