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Wikipedia wins fight against brands paying for positive entries

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Wikipedia wins fight against brands paying for positive entriesThe Wikimedia Foundation, which is responsible for Wikipedia, has won a small but noteworthy victory against paid-editing services.

The Foundation recently modified the Wikipedia editing terms, making it a requirement for editors to disclose whether or not they have been paid to make changes to pages. The reason for this is that certain firms have been paying willing parties to write glowing, biased entries about them on Wikipedia.

Some online properties are even making money from writing such entries. Examples of such are getonwikipedia.com, getawikipedia.com, onwikipedia.com, and wikipediapagecreators.com – with the latter charging businesses $799 to create whitewashed Wikipedia pages for them.

Many of these websites have been using Wikipedia’s trademarked properties – such as its logo and the name “Wikipedia” – to advertise their paid-for services. The Wikimedia Foundation has been trying to communicate with these sites to ask them to stop using their trademarks to no avail.

“After months without change to the websites, and no response to our messages, we filed UDRP (Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy) complaints with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO),” said Yana Welinder, who is responsible for the legal and policy work for Wikimedia. “The complaints explained that the registrant of the domain names was violating Wikimedia’s trademark rights.”

WIPO’s ruling is in favor of Wikipedia. They have stated that the domain names were “confusingly similar to the Wikipedia trademark,” and were being used inappropriately. All domain names in question must now be relinquished to the Wikimedia Foundation.

Though the Wikimedia Foundation has successfully used cybersquatting legislation in its battle against the four aforementioned paid-for services, it’s still a long way from putting a complete stop to the practice altogether.

Via [The Next Web]

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