Wiki editing

I thought it might be helpful to look at the editing process for Wikipedia and see what kind of information they need for references. I looked at the page for Sara Paretsky, and noticed that it made no mention of Sisters in Crime, an organization that she founded. This is strange, considering that there is a Wikipedia page for the group. So I decided to do a little edit and take some screen shots along the way.

Here is a shot of the section before I changed it:

You only need to click the edit tab to edit a page, but it’s better form to create an account and log in so you’re not editing anonymously. The editing window has some simple menu functions. The text has some weird mark-up, but you don’t really need to know how to do the coding.

After I added my sentence to the article, I click Cite on the menu to display the citation tools, then selected cite web from the Templates drop-down and filled out as much of the form as I could.

I highlighted Sisters in Crime and used the link icon in the menu so I could link it back to the Wikipedia page for the organization. I should have clicked the button for a wiki page. It gave me a error message and let me fix it.

This is what it looked like at that point. The system put in all that coding for me. It also automatically added the new reference to the list at the end of the article.

I clicked Save page, then had to type a Captcha code and click Save again. Then the page looked like this:

There are three other templates besides cite web: cite news, cite book, and cite journal. This is what those forms look like:

It’s a good idea to keep track of the information you need for those forms. You don’t have to fill them out completely. Author, title and date are important, and DOIs, ISBNs, and URLs are very helpful to the people who use the wiki page to get back to the original sources. It’s also a good idea to keep track of the source of each piece of information you’re adding to an article, so your page doesn’t end up with [citation needed] tags.

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