Business failures on Wikipedia: Part II

The naivety of marketing and public relations specialists is a big problem for both Wikipedia and paid editors. Naivety is the main topic of this article.

Naivety is usually a misunderstanding of how Wikipedia works. Frequently, the arguments of new editors are based on rumours, rather than logic. This article presents some typical errors of inexperienced editors.

Too young editors
Wikipedia pages are similar to buildings, trees or authors of scientific literature — they do not appear completely formed. There are processes of growth and ageing.

As a rule, Wikipedia pages begin with several sentences that indicate that this thing exists. For example, the first edition of the article on poodle says: "Poodle is a breed of sea dogs. Poodle is a national dog of France. "

Articles on Wikipedia are created by someone who believes that the article should exist. This person downloads a small page that grows within the Wikipedia ecosystem.

These articles are called stubs among Wikipedists. Stubs do not have a fully formed encyclopedic examination, a complete subject, but may contain some important material which is necessary to create a fully formed encyclopedia article.

Link to the competitor's page as a reason to create your page
Frequently in discussions of articles, inexperienced editors protect their articles, they say that Wikipedia has an article about an X man or company, so there should be an article about Y or, Wikipedia page for X has a whole section on their products, so the Wikipedia page for Y should also have such section.

These errors occur because of the lack of knowledge about the platform. Naive editors often express subjective importance. Thus, they can name the subjects "famous" because of their popularity, talent or prestige, ignoring all the established criteria of recognition.

For all those who are familiar with the principles of Wikipedia's work, these statements are absolutely baseless. If an argument is focused on the causeless opinion that is not a policy, you lose a dispute.

"The nature of Wikipedia means that you can not provide a convincing argument, based solely that other articles exist or do not exist, because nothing prevents the creation of any article".

Anyone who has the basic idea of five pillars of Wikipedia, the requirements of significance or Wikipedia ecosystem, understands that the editors create articles based on the prevalence of this topic in reliable independent sources.

It does not mean that the argument on the existence of another material is inappropriate, but the misuse of this point of view implies naivety.

The Wikipedia community defines the policy by reaching the consensus after discussing and establishes its best practices on this agreement.

In the beginning of Wikipedia existence, when the criteria of significance were less severe than today, there were hundreds of stubs on little-known Pokemon characters. While famous Pokemon, such as Pikachu and Charmander, meet the Wikipedia criteria, less-known Pokemon, such as Sandshrew or Hypno, did not. However, enthusiasts have created several stubs.

The editor, who believed there are too many articles about Pokemon on Wikipedia, began to nominate several articles for removal.

The editor was bothered with the opinion that several stubs for about 800 Pokemon will never go further, and must be combined into the list. In order to decide which articles about Pokemon should be combined, and which ones are to turn into full articles, the editors began to compare articles nominated for removal, with known articles on Pokemon hoping that comparing may detect well-known types of Pokemon.

However, it didn’t help to reveal additional notable Pokemon species, and Wikipedia combined articles about Pokemon in one list. Since then, Wikipedists use Pokemon test as a precedent for combining pages about secondary fictional characters.

Animated monsters became an excellent example of how the existing content of Wikipedia can create a precedent. However, the precedent will probably not help companies that want to stay on the platform.

Look at the example: two people are sitting in a pub at a distance of two meters from each other, coming up with an application for tracking government changes in pandemic. Obviously, this application is doomed to success because we know that success disconnects friends, and up to 10pm the quarrel through who will take an account turns into a screaming competition for what a long-term PR strategy should be.

Two partners go away, and never talk to each other again. Fortunately, the market for such applications flourished, and both startups prospered in their own way. Although the idea of these enterprises was the same, we can talk about one key difference. One business follows a traditional PR strategy, providing publications in newspapers on weekends and local news. While the founder of another business pursued a modern digital PR strategy, passing intermediaries, such as news media and editors, and interacted directly with its target audience.

For the first year of work on Instagram the second company gathered 100,000 subscribers, their founder appeared in podcasts, on the YouTube channels and blogs. The level of his audience engagement grew up, and in the end he has earned more money than the founder with the limited but sophisticated strategy. However, when it comes to verifying their achievements on Wikipedia, less famous founder meets the Wikipedia popularity criteria.

Although the first founder had less media appearances than the second one, the publication with the participation of the first founder was supported by strict verification of facts and editorial standards.

On the other hand, bloggers, and podcasters who write about the second founder, manually hyperbolized the brand content directly for the target audience of the program. However, due to the fact that the second company couldn’t verify the information, Wikipedia editors could not use these allegedly original sources to confirm the claims of the subject in popularity. Thus, this enterprise did not meet the requirements of Wikipedia. To this day, the desired article in Wikipedia remains out of reach of the second business.

Attracting attention to contents violations in records of your competitors
Another error of beginner of paid edits is that they indicate a violation of the content on the page of its competitor.

Attracting attention to someone’s faults in order to distract the guilt from yours will definitely lead to unpleasant consequences for you. Wikipedia names it VP: Petard.

If one of your competitors jumped off the rock or put his hand in a fire, would you do the same? How about your competitor remained open illegally during the quarantine or placed sponsored content on the Internet without claiming it?

The fact that your competitor is ready to break the rules does not mean that you must take its behaviour as an example.

If you are wondering why the page of your competitor is longer than your maybe it's because they spent more time working with the media than you. More press — more prose, so their page undoubtedly will be longer than yours.