Chief Communications Officers… and Wikipedia

You know, over the past nine months or so, I’ve become fairly impressed with Wikipedia. A year ago, it seemed so far from useful that I held out little hope. But in the interim it has grown and matured in fine fashion. Today, for me, it is generally more useful than Google search as a means of getting a quick introduction to a new topic. (For instance, a paltry, partly-correct sentence in Wikipedia last year about a relatively little-recognized secondary fermentation in winemaking has become a downright informative discussion of malolactic fermentation.)

My disappointment was palpable, then, when I searched Wikipedia a few days ago for references to “Chief Communications Officer”. I use that term to refer to a communications professional who has the chief communications advisory relationship with a senior business leader of a company, organization or corporation. Sadly, I could find no reference whatsoever on Wikipedia to “Chief Communications Officer”. Plenty about the other chief officers you’d expect – finance, information, operations, etc., but not communications.

But, wait, there WAS a “CCO” listed on Wikipedia.

Oh, not “Chief Communications Officer”… but “Chief Credit Officer”. C’mon now! “Chief Credit Officer”?? Good grief.

I believe the language we use with respect to our profession has a profound effect over time on the profession itself. Wouldn’t you counsel your clients the same? Well, now there is a Wikipedia entry for Chief Communications Officer. I made it up. Pretty much from thin air. Give me a hand. Wikipedia is a collaborative effort. Good for people who need help. I need help.

(Posted by Ray Jordan)



Filed under Communications / PR, New Media

3 responses to “Chief Communications Officers… and Wikipedia

  1. Obviously, chief credit officers have more to say…

  2. Ray Jordan

    Wikipedia is clearly still a work in progress. Can’t complain about it, since, fundamentally, it is what we individually have made it. I spoke recently with a biologist acquaintance who had spent plenty of time thinking about what was wrong with the Wikipedia entry for “malolactic fermentation”. But had he ever clicked on “edit this page”? Nope. he didn’t know he could.

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