As digital-media director of The Sun, I sometimes see links or content within Wikipedia that's either inaccurate or in violation of our copyright. I am extremely wary of editing these pages because I don't want to undermine Wikipedia or run afoul of its conflict of interest guidelines (which I've read). I'd love to develop a better understanding of what would be of benefit to Wikipedia by discussing a few recent examples:
- The Sessions - As I've noted on the talk page for that article, there's a footnote that links to the source material the film is based on, but it goes to a Tumblr site where someone posted the full text of an essay without The Sun's permission. We have an extremely lax policy regarding other sites reproducing work we've published, but it makes more sense to us that Wikipedia would link to the original publisher. The Tumblr version is problematic in another way because it contains a number of typographical errors introduced, presumably, after scanning a printed page and running OCR to extract text. Is it acceptable to replace the Tumblr link with a link to our version of the essay?
- Cheryl Strayed - In the "Writing Career" section of this article, there's a bad link to The Sun's Wikipedia entry. The link that's present does not exist, but we do have a Wikipedia entry. Is it acceptable to change this?
- Speaking of The Sun Wikipedia entry, it is quite bare compared to other, similar journals. Would it be amiss to note some of our most prominent awards and contributors, or summarize our history? On review of other journal entries (for AGNI, for example), this seems like appropriate information to include in The Sun's entry. I am mindful, however, of the need to avoid self-promotion. This is why I'm asking here before taking any action. Any footnotes in Wikipedia that link to The Sun were added without our knowledge, and I have no interest in manipulating them (unless, say, a link is broken) or adding more on our own behalf. Dmahaffey (talk) 14:32, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
- Welcome to Wikipedia, and thank you for taking exactly the right approach. There is a useful guide at Wikipedia:Best practices for editors with conflicts of interest but, briefly, if a change is absolutely uncontroversial, by all means make it yourself, perhaps noting on the talk page that you have done so and why. I have fixed the first two points you mentioned above, but they are ones you could have done yourself. If there is any doubt, it is best to suggest on the article talk page the changes you propose and see whether other users agree. If it is a low-traffic page and you get no response in a day or two, you can place a "helpme" on the article talk page to attract attention.
- You may find that your change gets reverted - we suffer a great deal of random vandalism, both human and automatic systems watch for and try to correct it, and there is the occasional false positive. It will reduce the likelihood of that if you take care always to use an WP:Edit summary -a few words describing your change, entered in the edit summary box an inch or so above the "Save page" button. If despite that your change is reverted, don't make it again, but send a message to the user who reverted (you can see from the page history who that was) or start a discussion on the article talk page. Regards, JohnCD (talk) 16:13, 24 October 2012 (UTC)