Have you checked your Wikipedia page lately?

Wikipedia is often forgotten as one of the first of the Web 2.0 revolution sites and in many ways it has grown as more of an information source on government organizations than the agencies official websites. In any given Google search the Wikipedia entry on the topic is among the top 5 sites listed. With that in mind who in your organization is keeping an eye on your entry?

As a user edited site anyone can go in and update the information on any topic. Sometimes people with ill intent will go in and spread misinformation and outright lies about others and government agencies are as ripe a target as you can get.

At this time there are over 65 million visitors a month to Wikipedia and over 3.1 million articles in English are live on the site. While it is inappropriate to delete or try to hide negative information it is well within the rules of the site to report and seek the removal of information that is factually unsupported or malicious.

A wise tactice for public affairs officials is to ensure you are adding a regular review and monitoring of your organizations entry on the site as part of your duties. You may even discover your agency isn't listed at all and you should create a page yourself to ensure your agency is appearing in searches and telling your story to the public.

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Profile Photo Frederick P. Wellman

Steve, agreed...it has to be transparent that you might be editing but at a minimum I advocate monitoring the entry for any mischief or innacuracies that need to be challenged. If you use open source references such as media reports or official web sites you are on solid ground with the rules of the system.