Wikipedia is home to over 5.8 million articles and is growing. It is quite possible that you have used Wikipedia yourself for research purposes or for recreational purposes in the past. It’s an open source online encyclopedia for collaboration with multiple contributors and even more readers.
When it comes to contributing, Wikipedia encourages users to contribute to Wikipedia. They want you to work on bugs, create new pages, and be part of the fast growing community. You’re looking for users who want to cite sources, provide unbiased content, and keep all relative entries up to date.
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Perhaps you have a topic in mind that a search of the site won’t find an entry on a topic, or you found some errors on the page of your favorite rock band that you want to correct. In this case, you may become a Wikipedia contributor.
How to Create and Contribute to a Wikipedia Page
Although it has been around since 2011, Wikipedia is constantly evolving. In the beginning, Wikipedia was completely open source, so page creation and editing could be published within seconds of completion. This led to a lot of inaccuracies such as mistakes, ideological prejudices and nonsensical or irrelevant texts.
Since the rise in popularity, some Wikipedia screen readers have found it appropriate to restrict the creation and editing of articles. Some pages are even considered semi-protected or expanded, which means that only certain editors are able to change them.
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Before you contribute to Wikipedia and delve too deep into your own modifications, it is helpful to familiarize yourself with some of Wikipedia’s main guidelines . The most important guidelines are: neutral point of view, verifiability and no original research. They’re in the foreground after you’ve created an account.
Create a Wikipedia account
It has never been necessary to create an account to use the website. However, registration gives a user more privileges. One of these permissions is the ability to create and edit website pages.
- To create a Wikipedia account, navigate to official websiteand select your preferred language.
- On the start page, click on Create a user accountwhich is located in the upper right corner.
- Enter all the required information in the appropriate text boxes and click Create an account here.
- This will take you to the Core Policies page. You should notice that the ribbon has changed at the top of the page.
Before proceeding, make sure to confirm your email address. You should receive a confirmation email almost immediately after creating your account. It’s in the inbox of the email address you associated with your new account.
Contribute to Wikipedia by creating a Wikipedia page
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- First of all, you need to make sure that your topic has not been covered before. Enter the topic in the search bar and see if there is a result.
- If a topic has already been dealt with, it is best to bring your knowledge to bear. For topics that have not yet been covered, the results are displayed as such:
- In this case you can click on the result or press Next. This will take you to the search results page. Since the page doesn’t yet exist in Wikipedia, a paragraph like the following should appear:
- Click the Request that it is createdlink to continue. You should now be on the Authoring Articles page, which explains some of your options. Read on Help: Your First Article We’ll show you the best way to avoid rookie mistakes.
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- There is also a section, Submitting for Review, which you should also read before clicking Click here to start a new article .
Wikipedia Article Assistant
The Wikipedia Article Assistant is now your guide. It is recommended that you practice editing in your sandbox before creating a live draft article. The choice is yours, but anyone just starting out may find it a blessing to have an area to freely make mistakes to get a feel for the editing process.
Your sandbox is essentially your own user page where you can add things about yourself that may or may not be publicly viewable. It’s a great resource for new editors to get a sense of what to expect in the future.
- Continue through the wizard by clicking the Next button at the bottom of each page. Read each page in full as the information is invaluable to your fundraising efforts.
- Eventually you will be taken to a page asking for your connection to the topic you want to create a page for.
- By choosing I’m Not Affiliated with the topic,you can start writing your page design. For each of the other buttons, you’ll need to edit a confirmation of your relationship with the topic and post it on your user page.
- I’m writing about something near meis being discouraged by Wikipedia because they claim it’s harder to be neutral. You need to be open about your relationship with the subject.
- I get paid for editingrequires your employer or client’s name in order to have a civil relationship with the Wikipedia community.
- Regardless, we have no connection to the topic of our site for this article. Now all you have to do is enter the name of your draft page and click Create NewDraft Article .
Edit your Wikipedia page
You will be prompted immediately to start editing or, if you want, switch to the visual editor .
If you are new to WikiText , it will be a lot easier to switch to the visual editor.
Remember, learning WikiText using the markup language will be beneficial in the long run. For the article we will use the visual editor.
A new page should look something like this:
Be sure to read the instructions and read the Wikipedia cheat sheet for help on properly formatting your page. The cheatsheet contains markup information for formatting text, creating links, quotes, references, and footnotes, as well as many other additions and changes for visual or source code editors.
The cheatsheet does not need to be used to use the visual editor, but it is available if you want to. If you ever want to switch between editors, click the Switch Editor icon found in the menu bar.
When you start writing, the instruction window disappears. If you’d like, you can click the Edit Notes icon to drag it out again.
Other than that, the process is pretty straightforward. Enter your text in the blank field, being careful not to remove the line that already exists. Otherwise, the page will be prevented from being published because it will not go through the design process.
The visual editor allows you to change the font, add links, create quotes, create bulleted lists, insert pictures, tables, etc. Whatever your page needs, Wikipedia has you covered.
All inline citations automatically appear in the References section so no need to double up. Quotes are required for anything that is presented as fact on your page.
Stick to the rules, create a compelling and informative page, and click the Publish Page button. Your draft will be saved in a public area where you can continue working on it at any time.
It can take several weeks for your draft to be reviewed and either approved or rejected. During this time you can make further changes. Just make sure that it doesn’t take half a year without a single edit, otherwise the draft will be deleted.
Contributing to a Wikipedia page
If you want to contribute to a Wikipedia page that has already been set up, you need to look for one that is not classified as protected or semi-protected. In general, any article that is semi-protected allows minimal editing of the page.
You can use the lock symbol on the side to decipher which items have this protection.
What to look out for are pages that contain stubs . A stub tag is assigned to an article that is not yet fully or fully written. When searching the Wikipedia site, you will come across incomplete pages with a stub tag.
If you want to add something to a topic with a stub tag, click the Extend it link that should be granted editing rights immediately.
Once you’ve added your changes to the article, you can click the Publish Changes button. You will be greeted with a pop-up asking you to summarize and review the changes you have made.
If you just want to collaborate regardless of the topic, you can find a list of articles with stub tags and those in need of expansion right on the Wikipedia page. You should also add updated images related to the topic you captured or found. An encyclopedia requires pictures, so don’t be afraid to add a few. However, you need to provide detailed information about the source and license of the image file.
Another way you can contribute to Wikipedia is to remove spam and undo vandalism. At Wikipedia, millions of readers and contributors browse their resources every day. This results in some items being corrupted by biased or malicious people. You may find a page with broken or inappropriate links, nonsensical text, or articles that have been completely deleted.
Wikipedia provides tools that a contributor can use to undo vandalism and restore a page to a previous state. Individuals found to be continually violating Wikipedia’s rules or permanently destroying a page should be reported to the Administrator Intervention against Vandalism (AIV) Board.
Fight against Wikipedia vandalism
Correcting incorrect information and repairing damaged pages will also count as contributors.
- To aid this, you should enable the gadget twinklefound in your user settings.
- You have to be automatically confirmed in order to see the Twinkle gadget in the settings. To receive automatic verification, your account must be older than four days and have at least ten changes.
- Once Twinkle is enabled, you can patrol any recent changes through the Recent Changes link on the left side of the menu. It is located in the “Interaction” area.