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How to Create a Wikipedia Article

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Uploaded on Mar 15, 2010

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Share your expertise on a subject by writing about it for Wikipedia, the world's biggest encyclopedia. This multilingual, Web-based, free content encyclopedia already contains millions of articles, but there's always room for something new. Why not publish something by you?


Step 1: Have the right topic
Before you try to create an article, make sure you have an appropriate topic. Wikipedia wants unbiased, well-sourced information about subjects that are notable enough to appear in an encyclopedia. The site rejects articles that promote or publicize a business; advice -- legal, medical or otherwise; instructional material; travel guides; and news items.

Tip
Get ideas for topics by typing WP:RA in the search box; a list of articles requested by others will appear.

Step 2: Source your work
Make sure you get the information for your article from a credible, reliable source. Material in books and newspapers is generally considered reliable; the musings of bloggers are not. And don't bother writing about yourself; it's considered a conflict of interest.

Tip
Detailed instructions on the proper way to cite sources can be found by typing WP:CITE into the search box and hitting "Go."

Step 3: Conduct an internal search
Make sure Wikipedia hasn't already published an article on your exact subject by typing it into the site's internal search engine. Search as many variations of the topic name as you can think of, including common misspellings of relevant terms.

Tip
Click "Search" to find Wikipedia articles that just mention your subject.

Step 4: Google it
Search the topic on Google to see if it finds any Wikipedia articles on your subject. Google sometimes picks up postings that Wikipedia's own search engine misses.

Step 5: Sign up
Become a registered user to submit an article without first gaining the site's approval. Having an account also means you can create a user profile, receive messages from other users, request notification for changes made to articles, and, of course, get credit for the articles you write. Click on "create an account" at the top right of any page.

Tip
If you'd prefer not to register, submit a proposal through Wikipedia's Articles for Creation, an online review process that provides feedback on your idea. Type WP:AFC in a Search box and hit "Go."

Step 6: Practice writing
Practice writing an article by composing a draft in the Sandbox, where you can familiarize yourself with the site's editing tools. Get there by typing WP:SB in the Search box and hitting, "Go." Click "Help" in the toolbox to the left of any page for guidance.

Step 7: Enter the article
Type your subject in a Search box and hit "Go." You've already determined that no page with that title exists. Click on your highlighted search entry. You'll be redirected to a blank page where you can begin writing your article.

Tip
Wikipedia editors may request more sources from you after reviewing your article.

Step 8: Publish!
When your article is finished, hit "Show Preview" to proofread your work and see how it will appear on the site. When you're ready to publish it, hit "Save Page." Congratulations! You're a Wikipedian!

Did You Know?
Wikipedia has published articles in more than 250 languages.

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