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January 28, 2012

PRSA Makes the Case for PR Professionals Editing Wikipedia Pages in PRWeek Letter to the Editor

In a letter to the editor in the Jan. 28, 2012, issue of PRWeek, Keith Trivitt, PRSA associate director, public relations, advocates for public relations professionals to respect and abide by the editing rules of Wikipedia. The letter is in response to a Jan. 17, 2012, PRWeek article that reported on Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales’ meeting with public relations firm Bell Pottinger to discuss the firm’s previous issues with surreptitiously editing client’s Wikipedia entries.

Opinion: From Feedback — Is the industry wrong to disrespect Wikipedia?
Published: Jan. 28, 2012

It is wrong for the PR profession to think it can run roughshod over the established Wikipedia community (“Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales and Chime's Lord Bell in editing row,” PRWeek, 17 January).
PR professionals must engage with [Wikipedia] in a reasonable manner that respects the community's rules and protocols, while also ensuring they are acting in their clients' best interests. But the engagement should be one in which Wikipedia is willing to see and accommodate both sides of the issue.
Keith Trivitt
Associate Director
Public Relations Society of America

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