wikiSearch Engine Land Executive Editor Chris Sherman is fond of pointing out that [Social Media means] “Internet way-finding tools informed by human judgment.’ Informed’ can mean many things including egregiously uninformed.”

From manufacturing to intellectual property, industry brand stewards have been forced to accept the reality of Collaborative directories like Prefound, Zimbio, and Wikipedia. There has been a lot of debate regarding the powerful weight Wikipedia pulls in Google organic SERPS for direct brand searches.

For example here is a sampling of SERPs that might keep brand managers up at night: Google #4 Dell, #3 McDonald’s, #3 Burger King , #6 J.C. Penney, #2 Old Navy, #5 Apple, #3 Cheerios, #3 Gucci, #5 Salvation Army, #5 Coca-Cola, #4 Doritos, #3 Famous Dave’s, #4 Chevrolet, #3 Target Corporation, #6 Wal-Mart. There are many others.

Reaction from the Search Marketing Industry
A few days ago in his blog post, Search Engine Optimization Article at Wikipedia Doesn’t Deserve Attention, search marketing thought-leader Rand Fishkin took aim at Wikipedia. Using the example of the Wiki-community’s ongoing misrepresentation of OUR industry (SEO), Rand called out Wiki over the quality and importance of Wikipedia listings. Rand’s post echoed around the SEM trade publications.

How to Deal with Wikipedia
As with many aspects of the social media world, some of our client brand managers do not know how to deal with Wikipedia yet. In the coming days we’ll post a series of articles here exploring Wikipedia, the culture that surrounds the Wiki community, and options our clients have at their disposal to deal with listings that are inaccurate.

Here are some links to begin your journey in understanding and dealing with Wikipedia:

Editing Wikipedia for SEO?
Stephen Spencer

Wikipedia SEO: Don’t Spam – Contribute
Web Pro News

Wikipedia & SEO | Search Marketing Standard Blog
Search Marketing Standard

The Art Of SEO For Wikipedia & 16 Tips To Gain Respect
A Survival Guide to SEO & Wikipedia
Search Engine Land

Wikipedia and SEO, An interview with Wit
SEO Refuge

Improving the Wikipedia results for Search Engine Optimization
SEO By the Sea

Wikipedia & SEO
SEO Round Table

SEO: Can Wikipedia Help Your Business?
Practical Commerce