Note: The following blog was the original version of Munkapedia's Manual of Style and might be different.
My goal is to make this Wiki one of the best by having a clear standard of professionalism. In order to achieve this goal, I have created this blog to identify some of the most common mistakes in editing, show how we can together fix them, and state what should be avoided altogether.
Issues with mechanics is the most common problem in editing. One of the easiest ways to improve the look of articles is with proper use of mechanics.
- Punctuation: Never forget to add a period and restain from using commas when they are not needed.
- Capitalization: Capitalize proper nouns (names, days of the week, months).
- Spelling: If you are writing a new article and are a poor speller, I recommend that the article be written in Microsoft Word or another program with spell check first. When finished, simply copy and paste. Finish up by adding additional formatting and links. Writing in source mode provides spell check. Only do so if you have knowledge in code or a new page is being created.
- Tense: When writing about any animated work (TV show, film, etc.), write in present tense as the work is currently happening. Do not use past tense unless you are showing a different time relationship within the work. Past tense should only be used occasionally.
Grammar is critical in any form of writing but is very extensive. Be sure each sentence contains at least a subject and verb and follows the rules of grammar.
- Poor Writing: Try to avoid using “it is” or “this” frequently as these phrases are poor writing and can create confusion. Shy away from constantly using "and" multiple times in a single sentence or paragraph.
- Avoid slang: Don’t write how you would talk to your friends. Never use "I", "you", “you know” or similar phrases in articles. Do not start a sentence with "So," "But," "And," or "Because."
- Details: When editing plot be sure to avoid explaining every little detail. Be specific enough to include important scenes without telling everything. On the flip side, don’t be too broad either.
- Look over all edits: Does the sentence make sense? Is the sentence needed? I come across so many sentences that I have to struggle to find what is being said so I can edit the information correctly. Be sure to connect related ideas and not random thoughts. If the information is not needed, do not add it.
Tips for Pages
We are always looking to expand our information base and new pages are encouraged when needed. Be sure to search to see if the page already exists as a slightly different name before creating a new page. Capitilization matters! Do not create a page and add nothing to it.
- Fanfictions: Fanfictions are NOT allowed and will be deleted. Fanfictions include alternate endings to episodes/movies, odd pairings, romantic stories, and any other page that is not supported by the TV series and films. Our sister site, Chipmunk Fanon Wiki, was founded for fanfiction.
- Copy-and-pasted pages: Do not use Wikipedia as a crutch for editing. DO NOT copy and paste from Wikipedia or any other site. This practice is VERY unprofessional and in many cases criminal. Write original articles as Wikipedia is not entirely correct or complete. Original articles make this Wiki look much more professional and accurate. Just because information is not on Wikipedia does not mean the information is incorrect. Do not edit to match Wikipedia or another site's format. A completely original, correctly written article takes many hours to days to finish.
- Relevance: If the page is not relevant to the Wiki, it will be removed. If the page is, for example, a person, be sure to include in the article why they are relevant to the Wiki. If the page will be personal in nature, do not create it as a new article. All users have a blog they can add general questions and comments to or use to recruit people to a website or fan group.
- Songs: Before adding a new song to the Wiki, make sure that the song is indeed a REAL Chipmunk and/or Chipette song. There are many that are made by fans that do not belong on this Wiki. Look to see if the song is on one or more of the albums, episodes, specials, and/or films. Identify which on the page. Never just copy-and-paste lyrics from another site without checking to see if they are correct. Lyric sites commonly copy from other lyric sites, which makes errors in song lyrics very likely. Carefully listen to the song when writing lyrics. Include background singer lyrics in parenthesis as they come up in a song.
Links help improve navigation to desired information.
- Internal: These links help navigating the Wiki more convenient but can quickly become annoying. Avoid creating a link for every “Avlin” in an article. They are not needed. I recommend using one link for the FIRST time the internal article is used. Internal links are only useful to the community if the page exist so please do not link to pages that do not exist.
- External: Wiki encourages users to include links on pages that have information that is new, in dispute, or can create confusion. These are usually external links. Be sure the webpage is accurate before adding a link. Never add a link that doesn't deal with the information presented in the article. An external link in not needed to define everyday vocabulary such as "adopt". Avoid filling the page with unnecessary links.
The more organized a page is, the faster information can be found.
- Headings: Headings allow the reader to jump ahead in the article to the information they are looking for, drasticly improving organization. To create headings, click on the drop down box that says "Format" and select a heading. The headings are broken down into subunits, for example, Heading 3 (Organization) is a subheading for Heading 2 (Tips for Pages).
- Templates: Templates make pages uniform and professional. They can be found to the lower right while editing. DO NOT attempt to edit any template unless there is a problem in the layout that prevents the template from preforming it's desired funtion, you have extensive knowledge in code, and are, preferably, the creator of the template. Templates usually have the most complex coding.
- Code (Source mode): Some pages have more complex coding than others. I know of at least two main pages that must be edited in code in order to be edited at all, others have code under the Source tab that must be correct in order to display everything properly. All templates are also created with code. DO NOT edit any code if you are not familiar with it. Even little changes such as removing a “-“ can affect the page. Either become very familiar with the HTML and CSS coding online or have someone who knows the code to edit the page if there is a problem.
- Relevant categories: When finished writing a new page, add relevant categories that reflect the information provided in the article. For example, if the page is an actor, be sure to find out if they provided the voice for a character or were an on-screen actor. If they are a voice actor, place them in the "Voice actors" category and not the "Actors" or "Characters" categories. Do not created a category for actors in a single film. Categories are adding to the right when editing. If an article needs more information, add some and/or put the article in the "stub" category.
- Repetition: There is no reason to include information over and over again in the same article no matter the size. Doing so lengthens the article, which becomes a nuisance to the reader. Avoid using the same word multiple times in the same paragraph.
- Pictures and Videos: After adding the file, be sure to hit the preview button before publishing to see if the picture or video interferes with the text. If there is interference, move the picture or video up or down until none exists. Avoid adding very large pictures on pages. All main characters have seperate galleries for pictures.
- Quotes: The correct way to show quotes is in “parentheses italicized” as shown. When writing stage directions, the correct way to write the quote is like so: (Jeanette sighs and starts singing) “S.O.S. please, someone help me...it's not healthy...” If the quote is in a quotes section, it should be written as: Jeanette : (sighs and starts singing) S.O.S. please, someone help me...it's not healthy...
These pages are important to share information and suggestions between editors on what needs revising to make the article better. If there is ever a problem with a page, leave a comment on the talk page related to the article.
- Proper commenting: Talk pages are not personal discussion boards. If you want to just talk with someone, the Wiki has a chat feature. To discuss personal opinions, create a blog post off your user page. DO NOT put personal opinions or unrelated comments on talk pages.
- Signatures: After every comment posted on a talk page, include your signature by using four ~ marks back-to-back or the signature button above. Here's mine: DEmersonJMFM (talk) 16:02, January 3, 2013 (UTC) Do not put your signature on any article, even if you are the primary editor.
If you have questions about proper editing, comment below. Happy editing!