Week Seven

Module 7: Wikipedia Hands-On

Wikipedia: A Mob of Success(!?)

I found the idea behind this week’s assignment entertaining as well as enlightening. Although I have always used Wikipedia as a beginning information resource in an informal context, I previously never really thought about who specifically was posting the content. Was it some mythical online Wikipedia fairies, or was it real-life people that found value in sharing and curating easily accessible, educational resources?

I  had no understanding of the processes in making or revising a Wikipedia article, so I refrained from including myself in the mix of a potential Wikipedia aficionado. All it takes is encouragement and access to the right information or tutorials to get started. I found the WikiEdu training modules to be very effective and I immediately felt confident in joining the Wikipedia contributor melee.

The training immediately got me thinking, what kind of article was I confident in editing or adding content to? If an article was a staple of my previous online research, was the article prominent enough to be able to find easily available, trusted resources to cite? And if the answer was YES to both of the aforementioned criteria, was it controversial and/or did it need any revisions I was capable of making?

After playing around with these ideas, I was able to determine that one particular article that garnered enough trusted resources to add information to a particular omission from the article’s timeline. The article was about a band called The Parlor Mob that I have always enjoyed, but as it turns out I only knew surface-level information about. Once the citation resources were developed, it was time to jump in!

Although the Sandbox feature was thoroughly explained, I found myself only using it for this initial project as a means for exploration. I posted to the feed to prove to myself that I understood what this part of the process entailed. Admittedly not a stellar beginning, but it got the party started!

The next step was to Talk about my proposal for article contributions. As suggested, I reviewed existing content within the article’s talk page, then I posted a short explanation of what I intended to contribute. In this case, there wasn’t a ton of recent activity and I did not feel that the community would find anything about my proposal objectionable. I posted and waited for any response.

After a few days of waiting, I did not receive any objections so I found it appropriate to post to the main article. I found the editor fairly similar to any standard text editing tool, so the only real problem lied in deciding how to make the post congruent with Wikipedia and the article’s existing format and style.  Once again the waiting game commenced. Would my contribution be accepted, or would I get booted off Wikipedia in perpetuity? lol 🙂

Success! As of today, my post is still left standing as is, no revisions. I found an immense amount of joy in that I was successful in contributing to the Wikipedia community so effortlessly. I shared this experience with any coevals at work and my wife at home, although they may or may not have been as enthusiastic as I am…


The sandbox

Wikipedia Sandbox Page

Let’s Talk about it
Wikipedia Talk PageSuccess!!