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PR firms agree to play by Wikipedia’s editing rules

Eleven large PR firms issue statement agreeing to comply with the online encyclopedia’s rules after an investigation into paid edits on the site.

In the wake of a dispute over paid edits of Wikipedia pages, 11 of the largest public relations firms have agreed to comply with the online encyclopedia’s rules.

The move comes after Wikimedia Foundation, the organization that administers Wikipedia, threatened a public relations agency last year with legal action for what it called “suspicious edits” of the online encyclopedia’s pages to promote organizations or products.

Acknowledging that “prior actions of some in our industry have led to a challenging relationship” with Wikipedia editors, the firms vowed in a statement Tuesday to abide by the site’s policies and guidelines as well as its terms of service. The firms also promised to police their own industry and counsel their clients in regard to proper conduct on the site.

“On behalf of our firms, we recognize Wikipedia’s unique and important role as a public knowledge resource,” the statement reads. “Our firms believe that it is in the best interest of our industry, and Wikipedia users at large, that Wikipedia fulfill its mission of developing an accurate and objective online encyclopedia. Therefore, it is wise for communications professionals to follow Wikipedia policies as part of ethical engagement practices.”

The issue came to a head last October when the Wikimedia announced it had shut down more than 250 editing accounts as part of an investigation into an increase in paid edits on the nonprofit site by sockpuppets, or online identities used for purposes of deception. Reports in The Daily Dot and Vicelinked the rise to a service called Wiki-PR, which formerly billed itself as “Wikipedia writers for hire.”

Wiki-PR’s services pages formerly promised clients a “page management service” so that their Wikipedia presence wasn’t “left up to chance.” Although those references have been removed, the services page includes “crisis editing,” which is designed to help clients who feel they are being treated “unfairly” on Wikipedia “navigate contentious situations.”

After discussions failed to resolve the issue to its satisfaction, Wikimedia sent a cease-and-desist letter to Wiki-PR CEO Jordan French in November that warned it was “prepared to take any necessary legal action to protect its rights.”

Wiki-PR did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the firms’ statement, but French told CNET last October that Wikipedia had been overzealous in its investigation.

“Senior Wikipedia administrators closed the sockpuppet investigation after concluding that we were paid editors paying other editors,” French wrote in an email to CNET. “Volumes of Wikipedia pages we didn’t work on were wrongly swept into that investigation. We do pay hundreds of other editors for their work — they’re real people and not sockpuppets.”

Wikipedia’s Terms of Use expressly forbid “attempting to impersonate another user or individual, misrepresenting your affiliation with any individual or entity, or using the username of another user with the intent to deceive.”

The firms signing the agreement included Beutler Ink, Ogilvy & Mather, FleishmanHillard, Peppercomm, Burson-Marsteller, Ketchum, Porter Novelli, Voce Communications, Edelman, Allison+Partners, and Glover Park Group.

CNET has contacted Wikimedia for comment and will update this report when we learn more.

Source:cnet.com

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Sunny Leone Set To Sizzle In DK With Prem

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Sunny Leone is in demand and she is all set to add that extra zing in a Kannada film titled DK opposite Prem.

“I was in Mumbai recently to discuss the song with Sunny Leone. She has given her nod to be a part of the film,” says the director turned actor Prem, who had earlier roped in few Bollywood hotties for the item song in his movies.

Prem, who has earlier worked with Yana Gupta for his film Jogi and Mallika Sherawat in Preethi Yeke Bhoomi Melide caught much attention when he had brought in Scarlett Wilson for his film Prem’s Adda.

The trend continues with him bringing in the latest bombshell of Bollywood, Sunny Leone for a special appearance in his upcoming film DK directed by Udaya Prakash. As we know, Prem had previously tried to rope in Sunny Leone for a film but it did not work. Not losing hope, he took another chance and this time he has succeeded. Sunny will do an item song in DK and as per our sources, the actress has been paid a little more than a whopping 40 lakh to sizzle on screen.

Source:in.movies.yahoo.com

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It would be interesting to learn how Prem charmed these beauties to work in his films. Ask him about it and he chuckles, “Yes, I have always brought in an interesting factor to my films, which has garnered a lot of attention. Sunny this time has agreed, but everything will be finalised once we are done with the agreement. Till then, I have to keep my lips sealed,” he says.

The makers of DK are planning to release a threatrical teaser in three theatres on the day of the muhurath, sometime this month.

Apart from Sunny Leone, DK has invited a lot of speculation. “There have been different thoughts about DK. Some think the film is based on the life of politician DK Shivakumar, who is currently the Minister of Energy in Karnataka, while few others think it is about politician HD Kumaraswamy. But I ask all of them to come and watch the film and then decide what the subject is all about.” stated Prem.

Here’s wishing team DK all the best.