The 12 commandments of Wikipedia

There are right ways and wrong ways to maintain Wikipedia pages, and these 12 dos and don'ts can help you avoid the most common mistakes organizations make when trying to manage, or manipulate, their Wikipedia presences.

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6 things you should always do on Wikipedia

1) Hire a Wiki editor with a solid track record

Whenever new edits or articles are posted to Wikipedia, other editors review them. And they sometimes check those submitting editors' previous contributions. Contributions from editors with no Wikipedia history may be seen as suspicious, especially if the edits seem promotional.

[Related: How to effectively create and manage a Wikipedia page ]

If you're hiring a Wikipedia editor, look for someone "with a longstanding track record of Wikipedia edits and who is known by other editors," says Shannon M. Wilkinson, founder and CEO, Reputation Communications. Seasoned Wiki editors "won't attempt to post a purely promotional profile because they know it will be rejected or heavily criticized."

2) Back up details with credible, independent sources

Hokku PR'sHeby suggest having lots of appropriate research ready to back up any new claims you make on Wikipedia. "Most people don't know this, but that also means you should link to other Wikipedia pages and have other Wikipedia pages linked to you." 

3) Submit new articles using Wikipedia's official tool 

It's a good idea to submit new pages with Wikipedia's official Articles for Creation tool and then clearly disclose your affiliation to, or conflict of interest with, the subject, according to David King, owner of Ethical Wiki. Doing so can help to demonstrate that you're trying to do the right thing and make allies (instead of potential enemies) on Wikipedia.

4) Keep Wikipedia readers in mind

It pays to keep Wikipedia users top of mind. "It's far more likely your submission will be well received if you consider what they want, not what you want," according to Mark Nicholson, owner, Reactorr.

5) Remember questionable edits can cause scrutiny 

Sloppy or questionable new edits can have negative effects on existing pages, Nicholson says. "It can be like taking a couple steps backwards by drawing attention to a page that's had the green light in the past. Be sure to submit properly so it draws less scrutiny and doesn't put your past work under the microscope." 

6) Get as much media attention as possible

In general, it's better for someone else to create your Wikipedia page, and media attention can inspire someone to do so, according toNaresh Vissa, founder and CEO, Krish Media & Marketing. "Once you get your own Wikipedia page created, that's when you know you made it — for better or for worse."

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