There is a Gazette reader with just too much spare time on his hands

background graphic redBy Staff

February 8th, 2021


Being in lock-down mode and being asked to “stay at home” leads to some interesting results.

One Burlington resident, known for catching our typos, decided to learn what Wikipedia had to say about his home town.

The author of the following has asked to remain anonymous; could it be that he is not authorized to speak on behalf of the city?

Do read on.

Many school age Burlington students are forced by this prolonged pandemic to get their information online; their Go-To source for instant information is Wikipedia.

The best mid-size city in Canada is Burlington (as everyone already knows) and researchers will Google us to find: Wikipedia. Burlington Ontario.

Let us examine what Wikipedia says about Burlington. Our: History, Elected officials, Economy, Media, Shopping.

Burlington, Ontario
Burlington is a city in the Regional Municipality of Halton at the northwestern end of Lake Ontario in Ontario, Canada. Along with Milton to the north, Burlington forms the west end of the Greater Toronto Area, and is also part of the Hamilton metropolitan census area. Burlington lies between Lake Ontario’s north shore and the Niagara Escarpment.

That truly boring descriptive tells readers we are “at the west end of Toronto alongside Milton”.

What else can we learn?

History. By 1906, the town boasted its own newspaper—the Burlington Gazette—as well as a town library and a local rail line that connected Burlington to nearby Hamilton.

Allow us to update – The Original Burlington Gazette ran 1899-1956 and by 1906 – Burlington was already on its third railway station at Freeman. The “local Rail Line” was an integral part of the Grand Trunk Railway of Canada, at that time the LONGEST railway in the world.

Who are we?

Wikipedia says people who live here are either: Burlingtonians or Burlingtonites.
Only the first name sounds familiar, maybe it’s for day use?

Then Wikipedia shows us this image of our flag:

Flag 1 NOT…but wait, that’s NOT our flag.

flag 2 YESThis is our flag – with a full three masted schooner – not some puny rowboat.

Burly, our beautiful moo-cow, should grace the upper left corner of the shield not a My Little Pony Bridled Unicorn. Nay I say. Wikipedia must fix this immediately.

Let us keep going to “print media”,

The following publications are either published in or around Burlington, or have Burlington as one of their main subjects:
• Burlington Post
• Snap Burlington
• Burlington News
• View Magazine
• Burlington Gazette

A closer inspection of these five:

This is what the original Burlington Gazette office on Brant Street used to look like.

This is what the original Burlington Gazette office on Brant Street used to look like.

• Burlington Post – we know (and love)

• Snap Burlington – Is that Snap’d Burlington – (let’s let Snap’d fix their own listing)

• What is this “Burlington News”??? Clicking on Wiki’s link reveals “nothing found”there

• View Magazine. This paper is out of Hamilton and what does VIEW Magazine’s search engine say about Burlington…?
View’s latest article dated Feb 1 2020 tells us:

Burlington’s Shane Wright lives up to ‘exceptional’ status in OHL and is averaging over a point per game in first year with Kingston in the Ontario Hockey League.

Shane’s a good Burlington boy – he’s a beauty – and a pretty good hockey player up there in Kingston, eh?

• Last but not least – it is good to see our own Burlington Gazette listed. Perhaps they could add a link.

• Remove “Burlington News” and add Hamilton Spectator instead.

• Also add “The Bay Observer”

Elected officials
Moving on to Wikipedia’s section on our elected officials and most of this public record is right – well, except…

• Oakville North-Burlington (the area bounded by Highway 407 to the north, Dundas Street to the south, Guelph Line to the west and Oakville to the east): Pam Damoff (Liberal).

Damoff with big wide open smiles

The MP for Oakville North Burlington would be very surprised to what Wikipedia thinks her constituency boundaries are.

What kind of crazy is this?

Wikipedia has removed 90% of Pam Damoff’s riding constituents, including everyone living between Dundas and the QEW? Certainly this needs to be fixed even if just for the integrity of our elections.


COVID’s impact notwithstanding, according to Wikipedia, there are only two shopping areas in town: Mapleview Mall and Burlington Mall.

Breaking news: Burlington Mall’s name was changed to Burlington Centre years ago.

Their picture  shows a jam-packed frenzy of shoppers doing their Xmas shopping at the Old Mall. Methinks it is time for a new photo.

And by the way, there are plenty of other shopping areas in town. Big box stores, strip plazas, power marts, and so on. Wikipedia could mention those.

How about the economy? Who are Burlington’s main employers – the “big-name heavy hitters” according to Wikipedia?

The top five private sector employers in Burlington are Fearmans Pork Inc, Cogeco Cable, Evertz Microsystems, Boehringer Ingelheim and EMC2.

Yes – those are some of the biggies? Who are the other notable businesses??

Other notable businesses include The EBF Group, ARGO Land Development, and The Sunshine Doughnut Company.

Donut - sunshineWait – what? Hold the phone. The Sunshine Doughnut Company makes top 10?

Voortman Cookies didn’t make the cut?

Nor did Samuel Steel, Pinty’s Foods, Thermo-Fisher, Pollard Windows?

This donut photo is NOT on Wikipedia – instead they have posted these drab glamour shots of Burlington doing its best impression of Tombstone Arizona.

Let’s look in greater detail next week – and not just bring problems but bring solutions.

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3 comments to There is a Gazette reader with just too much spare time on his hands

  • Fred Crockett

    Pepper, this article is nonsense.

    I say so not to savage you or your well-meaning and disciplined correspondent, but to hold our Economic Development people (or whatever they call themselves now) in absolute contempt.

    Wikipedia doesn’t write its content. Anyone can post whatever they want, but their posting is subject to critique and if it is bogus, the Wikipedia people deal with it.

    Wikipedia is often the first hit on Google, Bing, or other search engines. Instead of our Economic Development people hosting endless meetings on whatever they should call themselves, why don’t they assign a junior staff member or intern to spend two hours tidying up our listing on the Wikipedia site.

    Much better value for money…..

    Cheers, FC

  • Steve W

    Wikipedia relies on contributions to correct inaccuracies. The author should update the Wiki errors he or she has found.

  • MrBean

    Anyone can offer edited, added, or deleted info to Wikipedia. Hopefully with all the free time that person can contact Wikipedia with correct info.