When we first started the Wikipedia training last week, I was ecstatic to begin something new that I had never done before. Several of my friends had actually used Wikipedia in the past as a way to make edits on some of their favorite pages covering a range of artists and musicians. However, I did not realize the amount of work that goes into editing a page and ensuring that the codes are precise.
What I learned:
Throughout this assignment, I learned that all those years I spent on Tumblr trying to customize my HTML theme stood no chance against the beast of Wikipedia. It can be a hard task to come up with original content when your additions to the pages are not based on original research. I think I learned a lot of valuable information as to how to address a topic without being subjective. The need for “neutrality” was vital and understanding the kind of language to use in order to ensure that your point is accurate was important. Overall, It’s important to under the rules of:
Difficulties that I encountered:
One of my biggest difficulties throughout the assignment was that I didn’t exactly understand the coding. I had to go back through the training and look through the referencing material that we were provided. In addition, the usage the symbols was also something that I had to take a second to understand before I started editing on my sandbox. It would have been nice to know exactly how my edits would appear on my sandbox, because I wasn’t sure whether publishing my edits would erase them or create some kind of black hole on Wikipedia full of my coding errors. Perhaps my greatest difficulty was getting over the idea of whether my additions were “significant” enough, however I figured that since they related to Phil Ochs, any information about Phil Ochs from reliable sources was needed and had some form of significance.
How did I overcome my difficulties:
In order to overcome my difficulties with the formatting, I had to visit some online forums in addition to looking over the training again. I was able to find a lot of tips and helpful templates in order to make sure that my formatting was the way I wanted it to look. What really helped was creating a little cheatsheet for myself that I could use to easily add references without having to go back and forth between pages.
What I would do differently this time:
If there is something that I would do differently next time, I would really like to venture into creating an actual Wikipedia page with enough time and patience to wait for reviews and guidance from other users. I think that I could possibly do a good job because I find it very easy to follow coding formats once I understand how to navigate the software. Once I understood how to reference my sources and use the symbols, I was good to go.
My favorite part of this assignment:
Throughout my experience I realized that “linking” and “formatting” became really fun things to figure out once I understood the concepts. It was nice to be able to link my posts to other Wikipedia pages, and I think it really added a lot of substance to my posts.