Analysis of 2,578 Wikipedia articles provides insights for senior marketing executives
June 12, 2012 - EthicalWiki LLC, a consultancy in ethical Wikipedia engagement, published today the report “Brands on Wikipedia by the Numbers,” an analysis of the Wikipedia community’s feedback on 2,578 Wikipedia articles on brands. The findings of the report show that brands are poorly represented on Wikipedia. Fox Entertainment Group, LG Corporation, Playtex and the Pepsi Bottling Group were among brand pages identified by the Wikipedia community as important, but also incomplete or low in quality.
Key findings include:
- 90 percent of Wikipedia articles on brands are identified as low or medium priority
- 85 percent of brand articles are incomplete or of low quality
- 51 percent of requests for improvement to a brand page are related to providing credible third-party sources to draw content from
- Bias, quality and timeliness are also among the top concerns by Wikipedia’s editorial community
The findings suggest that heritage, branding and corporate identity are compelling objectives for company articles on Wikipedia. They also show that research is the most valuable asset Wikipedia’s editorial community needs to improve pages. When dealing with issues of bias, professionals should focus on being reasonable and easy to work with, rather than appealing to a volunteer editor’s accountability.
“The report is based on our belief that companies have missed an opportunity for longterm value through ethical Wikipedia engagement, but capturing that opportunity requires better alignment with Wikipedia’s content needs,” said David King, founder of EthicalWiki. “As an industry, our level of sophistication on Wikipedia has remained stagnant, creating an opportunity for some companies to outperform their peers.”
Companies can respect Wikipedia’s autonomy by offering content of value to the Wikipedia community transparently, without directly editing articles they have an affiliation with. “Wikipedia can be a liability, because it empowers individuals to use it as a weapon to unfairly attack the reputations of companies they don’t like,” said King. “However it also offers a service to create unbias and credible corporate profiles in the interest of free knowledge.”
EthicalWiki is an ethical Wikipedia engagement firm built on the pillars of transparency and ethics. We help companies improve Wikipedia to share their heritage, brand and corporate identity or inform readers on subjects important to them. Some of the best company articles on Wikipedia have been created through our service in transparent collaborations with the volunteer community.