Project aims to create 1,000 Wikipedia entries for local-news sites

We know your news organization deals in authentic, professional journalism, but does the Google-searching world?

A project at Washington State University Vancouver aims to ensure that local-news sites have current, credible info-boxes and Wikipedia entries so that those searching for information find legitimate local news.

“When readers search for a publication on Google, an ‘info box’ populated by Wikipedia pops up on the right side of the search results with basic information like the publication’s founding date, circulation size and editor,” a Poynter article explains. “But that’s not the case for thousands of smaller local papers that don’t have a Wikipedia page.”

Mike Caulfield, director of blended and networked learning at the university, aims to have students across the country create 1,000 local-news Wikipedia entries.

“So many solutions to the misinformation problem are coming from various providers, platforms, coders, that rely on Wikipedia as a piece of how they’re doing it,” Caulfield said. “But we’re not necessarily bolstering Wikipedia and preparing it for the inevitable onslaught of bad actors. The only way to do that is to build an infrastructure.”

Wikipedia rules won’t allow you to create your own page, but you can do one for a non-competitor. The call for volunteers is here.