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Forums: Index > Suggestions > Essays

Feel free to treat this like a talk page and use : to reply with comments on specific sections. This one is going to be a fairly long discussion with many various things that will need to be discussed as we head towards some sort of consensus.

Considering the recent outbreak of Essays that has happened we need to quickly start putting together some thoughts on how to handle them. While the Essay Template is a good start, I really think that all essays must be required to add something to the community.

Examples of what Kitsu feels is suitable & Unsuitable

Below are examples, including why I think the way I do, about essays

SUITABLE

Eu's essay on BloodClan's Future is my example of the suitable end of essays that we should permit. While I'm not sure I agree with the idea of lumping all essays by a user into a single subpage of their user space (linking individual essays would be harder), Eu has selected a topic to explore, and does while discussing the content of the books. Perhaps some formating for clarity would be nice, but for a first draft it's not bad at all.

UNSUITABLE

75.178.72.194's essay on Brambleclaw, Warrior of ThunderClan (Since DELETED). Between the fact that it's written by an IP user who will never be able to properly take credit or be held accountable for the essay, and the fact that it simply re-iterates information about the character with a few adorations from the user sprinkled through it... Well.. it simply dosen't add anything of note to the Wiki.

Number 1 : Policy or Guideline (Settled)

I know we need at least a guideline that can be used in deciding when it is and isn't appropriate when essays come up on AfD. And we have to accept that Essays will frequently come up on AfD, even if it's just once we have a better nomination process in some of our younger community members use AfD to attempt to silence Essays that are counter to their point of view on the subject. Kitsufox(Fox's Den) 16:31, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Some of these should have spoiler templates (i.e. Rainfur's feelings). I'm definitely for deleting the anon's essay unless he/she creates an account and moves it to a user subpage. Hobbes15(Tiger Headquarters) 01:01, 20 November 2007 (UTC)
I was already planning to pull that essay up on deletion once I get the new section for AfD ready to go. And we should definitely include standards that require spoiler-tags as appropriate for essys. It's a good idea to hold essays to that standard as we do every other page on the whole Wiki.  Kitsufox  Fox's Den 03:27, 20 November 2007 (UTC)

Now that the Essay Policy is in place, this one has worked itself out.  Kitsufox  Fox's Den 17:16, 1 December 2007 (UTC)

Number 2 : Where should essays be stored? (Settled)

I don't really feel that the Mainspace is appropriate for eassys, which are personal work. But I also feel that a single page (as Eu is currently executing it) isn't appriate either. Particularaly depending on the answer to the next item. Kitsufox(Fox's Den) 16:31, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Since we don't need to discuss this anymore, I figured I would post what the result was. Policy went through with each essay stored on it's own subpage of a user's personal space.  Kitsufox  Fox's Den 17:15, 1 December 2007 (UTC)

Number 3 : Should Essays be linked from articles?

I think this could be very beneficial to the Wiki, but we're going to want to be careful about when we permit it (to ensure that the focus is still on development of main articles). Perhaps open Essay link sections in "See Also" on characters would be appropriate on Bronze or Silver level articles, but definitely nothing lower than Bronze. It would encourage new editors to join, and encourage them to focus on getting main articles relating to topics of interest to them up to the point where they can add their essays. Kitsufox(Fox's Den) 16:31, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Eh... I'm not sure the article itself should link to an essay that is basically the opinion of maybe five Warriors fans at most. However, a little template could be created at the bottom of the page. Would something like "One or more essays have been written on the topic of this article by Warriors Wikians. For links to these, see the article's talk page." Then, we could link to a section placed at the top of the talk page with a list of the essays on the topic and links to them. Just a thought. Hobbes15(Tiger Headquarters) 00:58, 20 November 2007 (UTC)
I definatly think that there need to be standards for an essay to be linked from an article. I think that my BloodClan article should link (probably 'cause I wrote it), but the Brambleclaw essay just repeats what is in the page. Eulalia459678(Salamandastron) 01:57, 20 November 2007 (UTC)
I was thinking just a simple section below 'See Also' or within 'See Also' at the bottom. Though Eu's comment does bring up a good point. There should probobly be some sort of approvals process for Essays that get linked, to ensure they meet quality standards (if we end up doing links at all). If we go with a talk page linking, then we can do a set of templates, one for indicating essays have been written, and another to display essays that have been written.  Kitsufox  Fox's Den 03:26, 20 November 2007 (UTC)
I'm actually having second thought about all of this. I think that essays should be allowed on the WWiki, but not linked from the actual article. Does Wikipedia link user-made essays from their articles? Not that I know of. But if you look at LordTBT's user page, you'll see that he has written an essay, but it's not linked to Troy Howell's article.
Eulalia459678(Salamandastron) 17:06, 20 November 2007 (UTC)
Actually, though it's not done on the main namespace, Wikipedia does link essays from articles. Manual of Style links the Fancurft Essay. While it's not done on Redwall Wiki, it's not unheard of at others. There definitely should be some form of linking to the essays out of articles (otherwise, what's the point of even PERMITTING them? Why not just direct players to other places for storing such things if we're not going to acctually integrate them?). I know you Worship the way LordTBT runs Redwall Wiki, but we really can't just blindly go "This is how it's done at Wiki Z, that means it will absolutely work here on WWiki". I feel that, if an essay isn't going to be USED, we shouldn't waste space and time on them (granted, I wrote Death of the Warriors Code for a Warriors Newsletter I write for. why put time and effort into something that won't be used in some way. We should at LEAST be linking the essays from the articles in some way. Weather from the talk page or the main page of the article stands to be seen. There is also the possibility that, using an approval process (IE: the essay must reflect a serious consensus or be held as virtuous by enough people to support inclusion in the main article space via link). But if you support essays just sitting hidden and unused in an obscure category, then I'd have to stand against their inclusion in the wiki in any form. If we're not going to use it, why devote space to it?  Kitsufox  Fox's Den 18:34, 20 November 2007 (UTC)
For your information, I do not "worship the way LordTBT runs Redwall Wiki", I was just using him for an example, as that is the only Wikia I've seen that has essays (I don't generally browse them). And please, will you learn the difference between weather (meaning precipitation, temperature or climate) and whether (meaning whether or not).
Eulalia459678(Salamandastron) 14:57, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
Is it really that offensive to you, the idea of someone having the impression that you idolize LordTBT's Redwall Wiki when it IS a rather successful Wikia, that you must dig and find something entirely unrelated to the topic at hand to attack me for in revenge? Returning to things that are of consequence, we really need to acctually discuss the best approach for this wiki for dealing with Essays. It's clear to me that at least a few of our contributors (myself included) have opinions and the the daring to speak them. We do need to start getting some ideas what the options for consideration really are. I challenge those who care about the topic to each create a sub-heading (=== [[User:name|Name's]] Proposal ===) and make a proposal for the method they feel would be most appropriate for attending to the linking of essays from articles. If your proposal would basicaly match another's, just support that proposal instead of making your own. Then we get an idea as to which concepts are the standouts. And understand, I consider votes for "No linking of essays from articles" to be a suggestion that essays should be redirect to another source for storage and a full rewrite of current essay policy. If we're not going to acctually USE them, we should be pointing them to sites that will.  Kitsufox  Fox's Den 17:14, 1 December 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I actually do find it offensive for some reason, to say I worship someone. I do not worship him, nor will I ever.
Kitsu, "worship" is very different than idolize. Although it really isn't a terrible comment to make, I can understand how someone would be offended by you saying that they "worship" someone, something, or the way that someone does something, and I do think you could have worded your statements a bit better. Hobbes(Tiger's Lair) 18:14, 1 December 2007 (UTC)
Actually Hobbes, even though that was a bad way to word it, that wasn't what offended me (although, looking back, that was pretty offensive), but I am my own person, doing things my own way, in my own time, etc. I will not copy people in the way they run things (i.e. the Redwall Wiki), but I will use them for ideas, which are two different things entirely.
Eulalia459678(Salamandastron) 18:32, 30 November 2007 (UTC) 20:09, 1 December 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps I came across as harsher than I intended. But I spend a lot of time with Eu going "Redwall Wiki does..." or "LordTBT lets X Happen". Perhaps I should have just ignored Eu's snide little revenge attack on me, but Eu... Your tendency to just... Find something to snark at me with whenever I do something that annoys you in the least is getting old. If you're going to attack me, do it for something other that a Synonym error or spelling tweak that slipped through my filters.  Kitsufox  Fox's Den 20:58, 1 December 2007 (UTC)

Eu's Proposal

My proposal is simple. In order for an article to be allowed on the WWiki, they must not repeat everthing that is stated in the original article (i.e. the "essay" on Brambleclaw), and must actually be an essay, like my BloodClan essay, or Kitsu's essays. I say that we just either link them from our respective talk pages, or write them in the forum.
Eulalia459678(Salamandastron) 18:32, 30 November 2007 (UTC) 17:34, 1 December 2007 (UTC)

Support unless a better idea comes up. Also, I suggest disallowing essays to be written by anons—they're usually mistake-ridden, and as such it should probably a member-only privilege. Hobbes(Tiger's Lair) 18:14, 1 December 2007 (UTC)
Thank you Hobbes, I forgot to add the anti-anon part. Thankee ;)
Eulalia459678(Salamandastron) 18:32, 30 November 2007 (UTC) 20:12, 1 December 2007 (UTC)
I support this (This being, not the proposal of Eu's, but Hobbes' thought that essay writing should be a member's only privilege) getting written into the standards, but perhaps we should create a section for discussing possible alterations to the policy, rather than mixing it into this area ;)  Kitsufox  Fox's Den 20:40, 1 December 2007 (UTC)
Should we also disallow essays from users who just join to post their essay, and only allow users who have a certain amount of edits?
Eulalia459678(Salamandastron) 18:32, 30 November 2007 (UTC) 20:17, 1 December 2007 (UTC)
Considering that 50 bad edits aren't as valuable as 5 good ones, I don't see any reason to use edit count as any sort of dipstick for weather or not someone should be permitted to do anything.  Kitsufox  Fox's Den 20:40, 1 December 2007 (UTC)

Kitsu's Proposal

I feel that essays should either be dis-aloud or have some sort of option or possibility of linkage from articles. I have a multi-level proposal for you, regarding essays, which are a worthless waste of space unless there's some form of inclusion in articles.

Any essay that meets the Essay Policy would be eligible for inclusion in a list on the TALK page of the article they are about (or related to).

Within that Articles' Primary Project, however, discussion and votes could lead to inclusion of an Essay considered meritorious in some way, or otherwise beneficial and constructive as an inclusion in the article would be linked from the/a new "See Also" section at the end of the article. Any essays included in an article's main page (rather than the talk page) would have to be placed their via consensus of that Article's Project, or Primary Project (IE: Project Character Art wouldn't be able to get an Essay into a Character Article, as they're only responsible for the image, not the article itself).

Non-inclusion of essays renders them pointless. If people looking for that opinion, theory or other related subject would not be able to FIND those essays (as Userspace does not get searched with the search function) unless they're included. I feel this two-level system will provide the best coverage, permitting essays to be included in a talk page list by default, with the Project getting the option to include those shining examples into the article Propers "See Also" section.

 Kitsufox  Fox's Den 20:58, 1 December 2007 (UTC)

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