During the first month of 2013, Wikipedia led over 2,000 visitors to DigitalCommons@University of Nebraska – Lincoln. And UNL’s is not the only content benefitting from increased discoverability via Wikipedia: currently, over 1,000 Wikipedia articles reference scholarship hosted on Digital Commons sites. For example, an article on John Lennon and Paul McCartney’s songwriting partnership includes a citation to an article in the Pepperdine Law Review, and an article about adoption references a McMaster thesis.
Wikipedia is a great place to include appropriate links to content in IRs—in addition to driving traffic to repositories, these references benefit readers by providing references to high quality, open access scholarship. In fact, in its official guidelines for external linking, Wikipedia suggests that free, accessible content is preferable to sites requiring registration or payment, making open access content in Digital Commons repositories ideal candidates for inclusion.
Administrators or authors interested in adding links to IR content should check out Wikipedia’s guidelines for external links and be careful to add only relevant and useful references. In particular, articles about emerging and niche topical areas may be ideal places to add new links. Information on editing or creating new Wikipedia articles can be found here.
If you’d like to learn more about increasing the discoverability of your repository content, see “bepress Digital Commons: The Magic Behind Search Engine Discoverability.”