Wikipedia: Creating a Welcoming Environment!

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"Wikipedia greatly appreciates additions that help all people."

Wikipedia's Key Policies and Guidelines actually show true dedication to their users and contributors. They really try to make it a place where people can feel comfortable with the information they retrieve. However, it is kind of impossible to completely weed out all the bad reports and jokesters who use wikipedia as a game.

In their policies they mention to avoid any bias, respect copyrights and contributors, and make sure you have verifiable information. This is a lot to ask of a regular Joe. I was a regular Joe when I went in and edited two Wikipedia pages and I got some information from other sources but most of it I based off of knowledge that I already knew.

Wikipedia plays the honesty game. Everyone is on scouts honor. It's completely up to you to use your better judgement to put credible information on pages and to make sure to doublecheck what you do read.

However, after reading their Five Pillars, I think it's kind of cool that there is a site that exists like that. A site where people have free will and can use it to better (or worsen) the flow of knowledge. It's like going back to kindergarden and the teacher giving you 5 rules that you must follow; like being nice to other children except in Wikipedia world its, follow the code of conduct. 

In conclusion, you have to use good judgement when you view Wikipedia. It's just common sense.

2 Comments

Nihiltres said:

I applaud your insight. Common sense, accompanied by courtesy and good style, are precisely what Wikipedia's policies and guidelines entail.

The difficulty is in that common sense is hard to codify: often this can make the guidelines appear vague or uncertain. Indeed, one of the most powerful identity documents for Wikipedia is not positive in scope, but negative: What Wikipedia is not is an interesting read as it establishes many things that Wikipedia is not rather than establish firmly what the community has decided it is to be.

Daniella Choynowski said:

I read the wikipedia rules as more of a mission statement than actual guidelines. Respectful, intelligent people already know how to behave in mediums. Given the purpose of wikipedia, it is a no-brainer that users should not provide false information and strive for a consensus. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, and people will use it in order to do research-maybe not academic research, but research just the same. Wiki is a convenience tool, and why would you want to make a person's life more difficult (unless you're a troll).

The information I added to the articles was off the top of my read-but it was also all true. I did do research, if you count "googling" episode names as research, to "doublecheck" the references I made. But did I write anything that isn't knowledge to someone else out there already? no. I just put that knowledge in a more accessible place.

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