Baystation 12:Guide to Contributing to the Wiki
Before You Edit
We're glad you've shown interest in contributing to the wiki. Before you can edit articles on the wiki, you will need to register an account. Registration is currently open.
If you have any questions while you edit, you can leave a message on an article's talk page, ask on our IRC channel (#bs12wiki on irc.sorcery.net) or join the official Baystation 12 Discord and ask there.
Creating and Editing Articles
New content is always being added to Baystation 12. The majority of this content is technical information, in order to edit on the wiki, you should have a basic understanding of technical writing. It can be boiled down to the following:
- Be descriptive
- Don't use vague wording, such as "things," "stuff," etc. Do your best to identify, describe and explain anything that may appear.
- Use pictures to orient the reader
- Pictures are extremely important. They not only provide a visual description to what you are talking about, they can help break up the text and provide "way-points" for a readers eye to catch on. This makes a guide easier to read and easier to follow. Remember to add pictures and plan your article around them, if you don't add them, it's unlikely somebody else will.
- Minimize background info
- Keep information relevant. Use linking to help move additional information. Minimizing background info can also help to prevent readers from getting info they otherwise wouldn't want to read, the majority of readers only want a specific piece of information, so keeping information divided and short can help them find it.
- Crosslink heavily
- Readers often want to visit other areas of the site or gain more information on a topic. Using the searchbar can be an annoyance when they are only looking for the information you mention. You need to crosslink heavily so that readers can find that information quickly and effectively.
- Be simple, not loquacious
- Don't use big words, jargon or otherwise pretend that the reader is an expert on the subject.
- Don't overuse markup
- Overusing markup, such as bolding, italics, templates or even icons can disorient the reader. Keep markup to a minimum and use it only when necessary. This includes notes - notes are only to be used if absolutely necessary.
- Don't use passive voice
- "I," "Me" or anything that is done from a first person perspective. This also helps maintain neutrality of an article.
Always remember to follow the manual of style when editing to ensure that you are following correct procedure. This is a manual which dictates how your style of writing should be.
Editing Others' Work
It is often that you will find yourself needing to edit another editors work. The most common content editing and creating will be on another's article. You should always be bold, wikis develop faster when others help edit others work. Even if they disagree with you, remember that talk pages can be used to help come to a compromise. For this reason, it's important you include a summary to your edits so that editors may know your intentions and when you made the change.
Minor vs Major edit
A minor edit is when you are making superficial edits, such as typo corrections, formatting and presentation changes, rearranging of text without modifying content, etc. A minor edit is a version that the editor believes requires no review and could never be the subject of a dispute. This could also be used when updating information that was changed due a recent game version.
A major edit is when you change text, modify templates or make overall changes that affects the articles content. You should discuss with other editors before making a major edit. There are no necessary terms to which you have to agree when doing major edits, but the preceding recommendations have become best practice. If you do it your own way, the likelihood of your edits being reedited may be higher.
When performing a large edit, it is suggested that you periodically, and before pressing "Save page", copy your edits into an external text editor (preferably one without formatting, such as Notepad). This ensures that in the case of a browser crash you will not lose your work. If you are adding substantial amounts of work, it is also a good idea to save changes in stages.
Creating a new article
Should it be necessary to create a new guide or article, it's important to question yourself:
- Is my topic notable?
- Am I willing to finish and curate the article?
- Am I an expert, or willing to heavily research my article?
If you said no to any of these, you should leave the content creation to somebody else. Often times, a single editor will create a "rough-draft" for an article - during this writing period, nobody else should edit the article. This can disrupt an editors plan for a page. Once the draft is complete, edits are made and additional content can be added by other editors.
If you need a new template to help better organise your information, consider reading other articles and finding a similar template. Use this template to create a offshoot of the template that fits your information. If not, then either find somebody who is capable of make one yourself. You should use new templates when the information is specific, yet long. Generally, you should consider against creating a new template for an existing article unless absolutely necessary.
Lists & Long Pages
For the record - It is okay for a page to be long if it is a list or collection of lists. Any paragraphs and information need to be nested within said lists.