[Foundation-l] We really need to avoid the next Microsoft-Wikipedia bad publicity storm

geni geniice at gmail.com
Wed Jan 31 13:27:33 UTC 2007

On 1/31/07, David Gerard <dgerard at gmail.com> wrote:
> I got a call yesterday from a press officer for a major UK bank. My
> number was one of the few contact numbers they could find.
> They spent lots of time yesterday morning adding stuff to the bank's
> article from their websites and having it reverted as a copyright
> violation. They couldn't work out what she was doing wrong, so they
> called me. They hadn't heard about the Microsoft mess at all. Oh dear.

Eh normally that kind of person doesn't have permission to release the
companies property under the GFDL.

> I explained that editing the article about yourself is a conflict of
> interest, and pointed them at the talk page and said this was the
> right place to put stuff - that they should introduce themselves, etc.
> And that people might argue, but that happens on the Internet. I also
> said I'd have a look myself.
> Well, that's one more innocent disaster averted ...
> But we really need something to handle this sort of thing and make it
> widely known. Something as n00b-friendly as possible - just type on a
> page (or in a form) or send an email.
> Which will mean another firehose of crap to find volunteers to deal
> with. This is the tricky bit. Compare to OTRS, which has the twin
> problems of (1) a firehose of crap with a few important things in it
> and (2) too few volunteers, who then get (understandably) tetchy and
> close to burnout, and not great success at recruiting more.
> So:
> 0. I submit that we really do need this.
> 1. Most n00b-friendly interface possible. This is not a big problem.
> 2. How to get volunteers interested in wanting to look at this? This
> is the tricky one.
> Ideas please!

How pragmatic are you prepared to be? From a purely PR viewpoint It
doesn't matter so much if a minor company screws up.

Thus we are only interested in making sure major companies have some
way to make contact.

One approach would be to launch a new service for them to moan at us
and see if we can get mentioned in the various trade magazines (there
is a
Financial Director magazine I assume there is a PR person magazine)

Try and directly mention it to as many of the fortune 500, FTSE 200,
whatever the equiv is for other countries companies as possible.
Probably going to have to throw in most media groups as well.

This should get the word out while keeping the whole thing as focused
on the group we are interested in as possible.

As I said before your best bet for recruiting is to go and ask newbie
admins directly on their talk pages and see if any sensible people
have failed RFA of late (has the side benefit of annoying the RFA

> (I'm tempted to submit this to Ask Slashdot for ideas ... any objections?)

You think you will be able to pick them out between the the anti
Microsoft rants and the fights between the pro and anti wikipedians?

Remember whatever we do we can't stop companies being stupid.

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