Wikipedia is an enormous source of information, but its “anyone can edit” quality right away punched holes in its credibility. This has improved down the years, but the day has yet to arrive when we see Wikipedia as a superior resource.
Given the accessibility, content and depth of Wikipedia, PR practitioners can use it as a tool to promote their client or brand, inform their public, or correct misinformation. But there is no manual for navigating Wikipedia for PR. Wikipedia is a rose with thorns. Or thorns with a rose, maybe.
PRNewser provided some helpful information straight from the original source: Wikipedia’s head of communications, Jay Walsh. Walsh spoke with PRWeek UK , and he said PR practitioners can “participate on Wikipedia in any way they like.” His advice sounds like, well, what PR pros should be doing anyway: present accurate information and be upfront about your goals. Walsh suggests PR pros use the Discussion feature to speak with other article editors to learn what is happening with the contested article, and provide relevant information and links to backup what you are saying. Communicate in a respectful manner, and prove the legitimacy of what you are saying. Make your edits public, and include in your editor bio that you work in PR.
Wikipedia has improved its reputation since editors began including more citations and links in the articles they write. If you are writing on Wikipedia for a client or brand, do the same. Accurate information and transparency in your actions is as imporant in Wikipedia as it is the general social media world.