Before entering the public relations profession the more philosophical of my confrères had doubts that my ethical persuasions would handle the reality of service delivery. It’s always been a possible grievance and in the past (before my present position) I’ve faced ethical dilemmas. How fortunate to be involved in a role where the job’s scope affords such self-masturbatory question of principles.
When it comes to social media I’ve made it very clear in the past of my outright support of individual liberty and the importance of sharing knowledge. So I’m absolutely delighted that the agency I work for, Keene Communications, has agreed to pledge ethical allegiance to Wikipedia. In my role as digital consultant I had the pleasure to announce the news, after board-level discussions.
It’s important that we, as Keene, serve the needs of our clients but also respect the process of Wikipedia. Our content will ultimately shape Wikipedia and people’s judgment of the free encyclopedia. We are always willing to have open and honest relationships with Editors, as well as challenge them on key topics of debates that are central to client campaigns.
Wikipedia launched 13 years ago and swiftly gained respect for accuracy and reliability. This feisty non-profit relies on donations and is an example in its own right of why internet access should be considered a fundamental human right.
With the joint statement of ethics for communications firms on Wikipedia, PR agencies no longer have to worry in isolation about any Conflict of Interests (CoI) and know exactly how to interact with this valuable online resource. I personally look forward to publicly debating with editors over client issues and adding to Wikipedia for the greater good.