Friday, November 10, 2006

IIPM is trying to use Wikipedia for marketing

IIPM's Wikipedia page has been subject to a series of "positive" edits over the last few months, by a person that calls himself "Mrinal". He has been editing the Wikipedia page constantly, trying to change information that is provided there to reflect standard IIPM statements and flowery language. I'm fairly confident he's from IIPM itself, although he does not mention it.

For instance, he recently added language like this:

IIPM is the first institution from India to be selected as a member of CEEMAN (Central and East European Management Development Association). CEEMAN is the key body for registering graduate and post-graduate management institutions in the European Union and associate countries with members from 42 countries like IMD Lausanne, European University, and AACSB, which is the premier accrediting agency for bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degree programs in business administration in the US).

which had to be edited to provide more meaningful information like:

IIPM is a member of CEEMAN (Central and East European Management Development Association). [4], which is a global network of management institutions. CEEMAN organises courses, seminars and conferences for educators.

Note here that while CEEMAN accredits colleges, IIPM is not part of their accredited list. (Of course when I added that, "Mrinal" reverted it) Basically, CEEMAN is a paid membership club - but Mrinal's first notes convey the impression that it as a premier accreditation agency in in Europe (which it is not) and that it is involved with accreditation in the US (which again it is not).

It's been quite trying to keep the page sane. To balance the equation some joker or the other comes in and places text like "Arindam Chaudhuri is a fraud" which gets reverted soon - though that's stopped recently too, thank goodness.

But what's of concern is that Mrinal wants to remove ALL pointers to controversies on the IIPM page.

His latest comment, when I asked him to refrain from making all statements a marketing pitch for IIPM:

I have a problem with your statement where you say that all the text seems to be about marketing IIPM. It is perhaps not about marketing IIPM, but rather putting across points which are positive, as I notice certain others vociferously have used Wikipedia to put only negative statements (which you have correctly deleted in the past, and I have used positive statements to give the correct viewpoint, the USA Today example being one of them).

But I should say that if Wikipedia is only about providing non-marketable (or marketable) information, then we should start putting across all the news of IIPM written by journalists that comes in all the 'neutral' newspapers. You would realise that if a "non-marketable" USA Today article can be put up, then you have to clearly accept we should also put up non-USA Today articles which also give a different viewpoint. I am sure your points would be logical on that.

I'll start putting up IIPM news that comes in various newspapers from now on under different paragraphs. Because if you truly believe that visitors to the web site should know details about USA Today (running into five lines), then I think that the same amount of space should be dedicated to typical newsy articles on IIPM that might not be "non-marketable".

Deepak, I do think that your viewpoint with respect to CEMEN is perfectly ok. But I find it grossly wrong that you can consider it a part of the "marketing" statement. Anyway, at this point I am suggesting that the complete structure of the IIPM site on wikipedia does not confirm to the structure followed while writing details about business schools globally. You could visit the details of any ivy league school on wikipedia, or even other schools. I am going to suggest a complete structural change to the IIPM page today or tomorrow. That would mean a complete revamp adhering to the standard set up with respect to wikipedia details about other b-schools. That'll also ensure that discussions and debates on "marketable" and "non-marketable" information have a benchmark with other b-school information provided, which currently seems to be not there.

Do kindly give me a feedback on this suggestion. I'll put up the completely reworked template on Monday (with references to almost all the other b-school sites on wikipedia).

Well, I have no problems with a number of news articles on the page. Just not that we should put the same flowery spin on them. Also that we shouldn't have pure advertising, and we should have facts regardless of whether they are negative or positive.

Note here that Mrinal does not register himself on Wikipedia like most regular editors do - he only writes his name, and uses different IP addresses each time.

BTW. mentions of other schools are bunk; controversies appear in pages like Harvard and Yale.

I need help! If this person is involved with IIPM he will have considerable time to keep removing all controversies etc. from the IIPM page (which btw is the second highest link when you search for IIPM). If this is allowed to go on, we'll eventually have only a big ad campaign out there, and the entire section on the controversy (which I think is very important to have in there) will go.

I hope more people will join in helping with edits. Last year's issue is passe now, but the facts have not changed. IIPM still does full page ads saying the exact same things it did last year. Some of them still convey a false impression. We're sorta "okay" to live with that.

But just because there are no more articles does not mean we allow them to take over a public information site like Wikipedia.


Blogger Nandz said...

Why don't you try mailing the Wikipedia admins to lock the page down. I checked out the list of locked pages at Wikipedia and there are at least two pages relating to India which have been locked down.

9:39 PM, November 12, 2006  
Blogger Deepak Shenoy said...

Unfortunately, locking is not the solution. We still need to update items as and when they appear. Of course if there are edit or reverts that seem to conflict constantly, we can request a lock.

That'll then have to be arbitrated and mediated. And consensus needs to be built. My call's to request for more people to contribute to the consensus.

12:46 AM, November 13, 2006  
Anonymous ange said...

interesting.... this is possibly something to do with the admissions for the upcoming academic year.. they seem to have started out their promotional campaign earlier than planned...

2:37 PM, November 13, 2006  
Anonymous Vikrant said...

Hey I'm a wikipedia regular. Although I'm not an admin, i can get this page locked.

8:43 PM, November 13, 2006  
Blogger Deepak Shenoy said...

ange: possible, though the fact that it's like no. 3 when you search for "IIPM" is probably hurting.

vikrant: thanks - probably don't need that unless things get ugly but if that happens I'll get in touch...

10:00 PM, November 13, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your web page looks very "ad ish". Have you ever considered that the credibility of your posts and the quality of information you provide might get tainted due to the ads on your blog?

10:21 PM, November 13, 2006  
Blogger Nachowski said...

This Mrinal person interests me greatly. Red flag #1: totally condescending language, Red flag #2: refusal to register.

Also, I did some, eh, "research", and it seems (s)he is hiding behind a pretty sophisticated NAT box in or around Noida. The following interesting link was live as of posting:

12:44 AM, November 14, 2006  
Blogger Siyaah said...

Why not have two pages presenting two perspectives? Noticed that pattern on Wikipedia for some controversial issues.

It's unlikely that those affiliated with such institutions would let any statements go through that might hurt them. More than one page might be the only logical answer...there is more than one perspective on everything.

I am quite intrigued by this issue just coz it has occupied the blogosphere for a while.

6:05 AM, November 14, 2006  
Anonymous Vikrant said...


You can reach me at:

10:58 AM, November 14, 2006  
Blogger Nikhil Kulkarni said...

IIPM has a very shrewn set of administrators who find new ways of spreading misinformation every year.

When you say - "My call's to request for more people to contribute to the consensus." - do you want more people to speak uo in favour of blocking of the page or you want more people to start editing the page with relevant Point of views??

I am not an admin and niether an active 'editor' but am a very very frequent reader/seeker of info from the Wiki.

Do drop clear hints as to what you expectations are .. lots of help can follow. Fortunately a large subset of people active in blogosphere intersects with those actve on the Wiki as well.

10:51 PM, November 14, 2006  
Blogger Deepak Shenoy said...

Nikhil: Editing with relevant info is what I'm asking, and I think keeping that page encyclopaedic is what we need. I think blocking the page is of no real use; eventually you have to keep it updated.

Ses: Ads are gone. Thanks for that input.

8:55 AM, November 15, 2006  
Blogger blr bytes said...

Aha, and this ought to be added as to the article as well:

5:00 PM, November 16, 2006  
Blogger mrktg said...

Promoting someone else's product and services requires quite a commitment from you. Before you begin marketing their business, you must be sure that the goods or services are something of quality that you are willing to endorse. The best way to find out is to receive samples of the goods and evaluate them personally. Seminars for marketing provide important information on marketing and promotions.

11:52 AM, April 01, 2009  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just want to join MBA in IIPM-Banglore campus.
can u suggest me is it good or not.
I completed my MCA in jntu college

10:51 AM, April 22, 2009  

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