Media & PR

Wikipedia guidance for PR professionals

Out today is a very useful set of guidelines from the CIPR about how PR professionals should and shouldn’t use Wikipedia. It’s got a lot of detailed tips about how best to find your way around Wikipedia’s rules and features including the often neglected point about how to ensure your work and private online activities don’t cause a problematic clash at any point.

The accompanying press release adds that,

The guidance, which was originally drafted by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR), includes a number of recommendations and has gleaned global support in recognition of its potential for building mutual understanding between Wikipedians and public relations practitioners. The most integral of these is that public relations professionals should not directly edit Wikipedia pages relating to their organisation or brand but should instead suggest amendments to Wikipedians – the name for the community of regular Wikipedia editors.

During the consultation period, the guidance, which was hosted on Wikimedia UK, received more than 160 direct edits and over 120 contributions to the discussion page. Furthermore, the guidance document published today is merely version one – it will continue to be reviewed and refreshed as the relationship between the Wikipedia and public relations communities continues to progress…

The UK and international public relations bodies that have leant their official support to the CIPR Wikipedia guidance include:

Commenting, Chief Executive of Wikimedia UK Jon Davies, said: “I’m pleased that the PR industry is taking steps to learn more about Wikipedia and how it works. The fact that the CIPR’s guidelines are the result of collaboration between Wikipedians and the PR industry is a very good starting point.”


Update: coverage in The Independent – PR firms urged not to edit Wikipedia.

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