Last month, Sue Gardner, the outgoing executive director of the Wikimedia Foundation, announced that over 250 Wikipedia accounts had been blocked or banned as editors investigated accusations of people being paid to edit and manage pages.
Wiki-PR is a company that has made a business out of doing just that. The firm was mentioned in Gardner’s post, but had appeared in various news reports (notably one from the Daily Dot) even before that.
Today, the Wikimedia Foundation announced that it has sent Wiki-PR a cease and desist letter. Matthew Roth, a spokesperson for the Foundation, wrote on its blog:
Today, Cooley LLP, on behalf of the WMF, sent the cease and desist letter below to the CEO of Wiki-PR, demanding that Wiki-PR “cease and desist from further editing the Wikipedia website unless and until [they] have fully complied with the terms and conditions outlined by the Wikimedia Community.”
“In addition to these practices, our investigation has also uncovered evidence suggesting that Wiki-PR may have confused correspondent(s) concerning its relationship with the Wikimedia Foundation. This concerns us given that the Wikimedia Foundation has sent you two previous letters charging prior misuse of our trademark on your site.”
You can read the letter in its entirety here.
To this day, the title for the Wiki-PR homepage is “Wikipedia Writers For HIre”.