Reputation Management on Wikipediaby Kent Lewis on February 11, 2009Online Public Relations
So you have been reading Reputation Watch and know that it is probably a good idea to do online searches for yourself and your company on occasion. You Google your company name and scroll down a couple of spots and notice a Wikipedia entry under your name! How great, you think…
Someone has gone through the trouble of creating a Wikipedia article about us! You click on the link and begin to see what this wonderful person has so generously created. A nice overview of the company, some history and some operations information found in your IRS information. Wait! What’s that next section? Controversy?
The next section of the Wikipedia article, which is larger than all of the other sections combined, discusses some difficulties your company has had over the past decade or so. While everything may be true, it is fairly obvious this section has received much more attention than the rest of the article. They have cited a news story from the local station, the BBB website, and your states .gov web site. Pretty damaging stuff, right?
Well…yes. But with a little elbow grease and some paint, you can have that article shining!! Lets call the elbow grease research. You want to amass as much unbiased information as possible regarding your company online. As with all good research, digging deep is key here. Make sure you keep track of where all the information is coming from as these will be our citations later.
Now for the paint. We are going to paint this article with all of the unbiased information found during your research. Keep that unbiased mentality at the forefront of your mind whenever you are working with Wikipedia. The idea while painting is to camouflage the undesirable section by expanding the article and surrounding it with information that shows the company in a better light.
That’s it! If there is any information that is not cited or is blatantly incorrect, go through the proper channels of edits as a straight deletion will probably only bring the wrong kind of attention from the creator of the article. While we all know way too many people take Wikipedia as fact, not taking these types of situations personally will allow you to remain calm and generate unbiased edits that no one can touch.