Wiki Etiquette (adapted from Principles of Wikipedia Etiquetteand PBworks)


Consider the wiki as an extension of the classroom. University policies apply--including those regarding Academic Integrity and Harassment.

Keep safe. Don't post personal information or information about someone else. Keep things like ages, addresses, phone numbers, names of towns, or even places we work off the Internet. Remember that information on the internet, especially embarrassing information, may still be around after you've deleted it. Be careful not to post things that may come back to haunt you later. If you need to exchange personal information with another student, do so via email.

Amend, edit, discuss.

Be truthful. Write things you know to be correct using facts from research from reliable, credible sources.

Ask first, then give credit. Ask an artist's permission to post photos, pictures or articles of writing. Never use names of people that could identify them in a photo or video. You must also ask permission when using an idea from a friend, a family member, or even from an acquaintance. After you have permission, then ask if you can post his/her name to give him/her credit.

Be nice. Assume good faith and practice the golden rule. Keep in mind that raw text may be ambiguous and often seems ruder than the same words coming from a person standing in front of you. Irony is not always obvious when written—Remember that text comes without facial expressions, vocal inflection, or body language. Be careful choosing the words you write: what you mean might not be what others understand. Likewise, be careful how you interpret what you read: what you understand might not be what others mean.

Read, re-read, and proof-read before you click ENTER. Don't rush to make that final . Once you press that button, you can't bring it back. Look everything over and use your spell check to be sure everything is accurate. When you are certain that the editing is complete, then save to publish.

Information please. The Internet is a great source of information but information is only useful when it is accurate.

Be brief, to the point and logical. Use breaks in your text and formatting elements to make the page easy to read and understand.

Follow Directions. Be sure to follow the directions that are given for the assignment--be creative, but within the parameters set forth on the page.

Do not delete the work of others deliberately. Unless it is part of the editing process.

A few things to bear in mind

  • If someone disagrees with you, this does not necessarily mean that the person hates you, that the person thinks that you are stupid, that the person is stupid, or that the person is mean. When people post opinions without practical implications, it is best to just leave them alone. What you think is not necessarily right or necessarily wrong—a common example of this is religion. Before you think about insulting someone's views, think about what would happen if they insulted yours.
  • Editing the signed words of another editor on a talk page or other discussion page is generally not acceptable, even if the edit merely corrects spelling or grammar, as it can alter the meaning of the original comment and misrepresent the original editor's thoughts. Avoid editing another editor's comments unless necessary.