Wiki:What You Need to Know

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This article explains some basic things you should know before you contribute to the wiki, namely the wiki's principles, code of conduct, and general policies. Please review it frequently as you contribute to make sure that your actions on the wiki are consistent with the material presented here.

Note that this article is about the more theoretical things you need to know to contribute. If you need help with the more technical aspects of contributing, go to our Getting Started page.

Principles of the Family History Wiki

The Family History Wiki is built on three basic principles, outlined here and described in greater detail on their own pages:

  • Content--The wiki is designed to help you better understand topics, trends, and technologies in family history, not to help you find specific names on your family tree. Content in the wiki will reflect this.
  • Collaboration--The wiki can only succeed if we work together as a community to make it better. Good, collaborative behavior is expected.
  • Consistency--The wiki is the most useful when its content is well-written and verifiable and it contributors strive for accuracy and neutrality. Content and contributors should consistently work to improve the wiki.

If you remember nothing else as you make your contributions to the wiki, remember these three principles: content, collaboration, and consistency. The principles are explained in greater detail below and on their own pages.

Code of Conduct

The code of conduct for the Family History Wiki is very straight forward: be nice. Treat other users the way you want to be treated.

As a user of the Family History Wiki, you are expected to do the following:

  • Treat others with dignity and respect.
  • Assume other users are intelligent, thinking people who have good reasons for what they do.
  • Work with other users to resolve disputes calmly and diplomatically.
  • Debate the facts rather than attacking the people behind those facts.
  • Strive to maintain a neutral point of view in edits and additions.
  • Respect legal issues such a copyright and intellectual property.
  • Help new users learn the ropes.

If you consistently fail to live up to these expectations, action could be taken against your account (see below for what that means).

General Policies

The following are the main policies that govern the Family History Wiki.

  • Use of copyrighted material is prohibited, regardless of its format (text, image, etc.).
  • Offensive, pornographic, disruptive, or blatently irrelevant content will be deleted.
  • A user who reverts a page three times within a 24-hour period will be subject to disciplinary action.
  • Users who consistently and repeated fail to live up to the expectations of the Code of Conduct may be subject to disciplinary action.
  • Disciplinary action involves warning, blocking, and banning. Blocking means a user cannot use the wiki for a specific period of time. Banning means a user may no longer use the wiki.
  • Disciplinary action is taken by administrators.
  • Disputes that cannot be resolved by regular users can be resolved on request by administrators.