Do you have a Wikipedia page? Do you dream of having one?

It sure was a mark of distinction some 10 years ago, and for some it is still essential.

But is it worth it? Anymore?

Entrepreneur magazine’s July issue takes a look this social media tool and reports on latest developments, including acceptance – even if it is grudging – of paid-for pages.

Wikipedia once refused to allow those kinds of pages to go up and stay up if its crew of eagle-eyed editors could determine someone other than dedicated and uncompensated fans of an organization were behind it.

Now, it tolerates them – my reading of the policy – and they’ll stay up if the paid page carries a notation that money changed hands to get it there. Clarity, transparency and truth are key.

Jennifer Miller, who wrote the Entrepreneur piece, says that consultants who write pages for pay and stay in business still keep their standards high. For many reasons. She cites Brendan Gibson, who owns “What About Wiki” who told her, “ ‘If clients don’t have seven to 10 links of positive press, I won’t take them. If they don’t have awards, I won’t take them. If they have a really scummy link profile on Reddit and Quora, I won’t take them,’ he says. Otherwise, there’s a higher risk a page will be flagged — causing the rest of his pages to come under scrutiny. “

Wikipedia itself states that pages that go up and stay up need to have “reliable, third-party, published sources with a reputation for fact-checking and accuracy.” So mainstream media and conventional publishers such as the New York Times, Washington Post,  Bloomberg, Time still carry a lot of weight. And in this new era of “fake news” that counts considerably.

However, even as page creation diversifies and a creator’s identity is now even more clear, a Wikipedia page may not carry the cachet it once had. Says Miller, “Younger audiences, who respond more to social platforms and multimedia, may not pay much attention to the site, however.  And young and old alike are liable to dismiss you if you don’t have enough citations to create a robust page.”

So we come to citations. Or maybe we come back to citations.

How do you get citations?

We’ll take that up in Part 2, coming up soon.

Link to Entrepreneur:
“Entrepreneurs Are Paying Wikipedia Editors to Create Profile Pages”