From CommunityData

Problems Creating a Wikipedia Account[edit]

Q: I got a "Account Creation Error" or "You are currently unable to edit Wikipedia due to a block affecting this IP address" when I tried to create my Wikipedia account.

A: If you are able to use the UW VPN, give that a try. Access to VPN can be subject to international law, so please be aware of the restrictions that may apply to you if you are accessing the course from a country other than the US. Use the 'all internet traffic' option. If you are unable to use the VPN, please contact the teaching team so that we can work on getting you a whitelisted account.

Unfamiliar Terms, Jargon, and Concepts[edit]

sunk cost[edit]

This is a shortened version of the "sunk cost fallacy." Wikipedia has a good explanation of this general phenomenon. The idea here is that after we've bought something or put energy into it, we might decide to continue because of what we already spent, not because we really enjoy or want it any more. We might want to leave but feel that we can't or shouldn't. Examples that relate to this class include continuing to participate in a group after we stop enjoying it because of how much work it was to join in the first place, how much we already spent, how long we've already been a member, and so on. We might even continue to invest even though we simultaneously feel as if we are wasting our effort. Another fun idiom along this line is "throwing good money after bad".

Questions During the Wikipedia Assignment[edit]

Q: Many of the important sources I want to use are not in English. Can I still use them?

A: Yes. Non-English sources are allowed in Wikipedia but there are caveats -- here is the policy. Please note also that English Wikipedia rules on notability apply -- inclusion in another language edition of Wikipedia is not a guarantee of meeting the standards for English Wikipedia because each community has its own rules.

Q: Is Spotify a reliable source? How about YouTube? Or Baidu Baike? Or DBPedia? Is (X) a reliable source?

The policy is: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Reliable_sources

For frequently discussed sources, see: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Reliable_sources/Perennial_sources

For Music sources, see: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Albums/Sources

For Video game sources, see: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Video_games/Sources

Most WikiProjects have lists of sources they have determined meet reliability criteria and how they can be used effectively.

Q: I need sources. I can't find anything on Google, where else should I look?

A: The UW Library has a whole team of people who can offer advice -- try their livechat option for rapid advice.

There is a huge list here: https://guides.lib.uw.edu/az.php -- search for newspaper, you'll find 40 different databases. Check their research guides for topical lists of recommendations: https://guides.lib.uw.edu/research

Some of my favorites include:

  1. Nexis Uni
  2. Historic Newspapers: https://guides.lib.uw.edu/research/news
  3. Google Scholar

Q: How do I adjust the size of an image?

A: In visual editor mode, click the image, then click Edit, then Advanced. You'll see boxes where you can adjust sizes in pixels (px).