In the past, being mentioned in an encyclopedia was a honor, which only the most successful could aspire to. Nowadays, being mentioned on Wikipedia is necessary for the credibility of your organization. It has become a standard for nonprofits to have articles about their work on Wikipedia to promote the organization and their work.
We discussed in a previous blog post why Wikipedia is so important, and why every nonprofit organization should write and take care of its Wikipedia page. Today, I will explain the layout of Wikipedia pages, and walk through the steps for searching and editing on your Wikipedia page. We will use the Wikipedia page of our client Everytown for Gun Safety as an example to explain the main elements of the layout of a standard Wikipedia page, which includes:
This toolbar exists on the top of every Wikipedia article. It allows you to choose between 4 different ways of working with the article: Read, Edit, View History, and Talk. Each of them are explained below.
This is how your article looks to the viewer. This is the page which people will land on from any search engine. It’s the final version of the article after being edited.
This is where you go when you want to make a change to your article. Your change maybe an addition, reduction, or replacement of content in the article. In this section, you have to use a specific but simple writing style. While it’s different from writing in a Word doc, it isn’t html or a coding language. You can learn how to type Wikipedia style from the Wikipedia Manual of Style.
4. The View History Page
In this section, you can see all the edits to the article since the article was originally posted. You will have the option to undo a change to the article, restore a previous version of the article, or compare between two different versions of the article. You will need this section if your page was vandalized (damaged intentionally by someone), to restore your previous work on the article. You don’t need to be logged on to edit an article, but if you edited an article without logging in on Wikipedia, your IP address will appear in this section associated with your edit.
5. The Talk Page
This is where editors and administrators of Wikipedia can have a conversation about this specific article. This section is very important to use if information is being disputed, or if several people keep changing the same information in the article many times. Here you can provide evidence that your information is correct. If someone repeatedly adds something incorrect about your organization, this is where you can defend yourself and make sure that this information doesn’t appear on the Wikipedia page.
6. The Language Sidebar
This section connects your Wikipedia articles about the same topic in different languages. Viewers can use it to read about your organization in another language. When you add an article about your organization in a new language, Wikipedia won’t know the connection by itself. You need to use this section to connect your article in one language to articles in other languages about the same topic.
This is the layout of Wikipedia pages! If you have any questions, or if you need some help starting or editing your Wikipedia page, feel free to contact Fission to discuss it — we are always happy to help!