Wikipedia: Common mistakes
Newcomers are very welcome on Wikipedia - they are a very important part of this project. We want you to know that we welcome your new articles or edits to existing ones. We want you to edit the articles with courage. We consider Wikipedia to be a community of equal collaborators, whether they are newcomers or "old greasers." We don't have too many inviolable laws, except that Wikipedia is an encyclopedia written from a neutral point of view; however, there are a number of rules, recommendations, and traditions that you should familiarize yourself with so that you do not break them unnecessarily and save yourself disputes.
There are a number of common mistakes that some new Wikipedians make. The following list is created so that you do not unnecessarily repeat mistakes made by others before you. Here is a list of things to avoid when working on Wikipedia:
Do not duplicate articles. Before you create a new article, find out if a similar article no longer exists. Of course, you can extend an existing article. Keep in mind that the titles of most articles are in the same number (eg "tree", not "trees").
Do not write the first sentence as a dictionary entry, but as a complete sentence.
Remember to follow the highlighting rule, according to which the words used in the title of the article should be highlighted at the beginning of the article, preferably on the first line. Therefore, if the title of the article is, for example, "Prague", then the word Prague must be highlighted at the beginning. However, do not try to create a title using
, or do not start the first section of the article before the introductory sentence.
Don't worry too much about ruining something. You will probably make small mistakes. Everyone makes a bigger or smaller mistake. However, someone else will come after you to correct your mistake. So be brave when editing pages, but definitely use the preview button and don't forget to fill in the editing summary as well!
Don't treat Wikipedia as a dictionary. Although a good keyword can contain little more information than a dictionary definition, Wikipedia does not deal with defining common words or building a dictionary. At the same time, keep in mind that defining the professional and academic jargon needed to understand a longer article is not only appropriate but also recommended. Do not use abbreviations other than those commonly known as "eg", it is unnecessary to save space and confuse the reader. Also read what Wikipedia is not. And if you want to work on a wiki dictionary, look at Wiktionary.
Do not delete useful article content. It is rude and counterproductive to simply delete content that is useful only because it is not completely neutral (why not remove the biased tone of the article?) Or because it is poorly edited (why not make the necessary editorial adjustments?). Except in clear cases, deleting multiple sentences requires some explanation on the discussion page of the article. A good rule of thumb is never to diminish the useful content of an article.
Don't treat Wikipedia as a discussion forum. It is very easy to engage in emotional, engaged debates on various topics on discussion sites. Unless it helps to improve the article, which usually doesn't, it's better to avoid such debates altogether. There are many other places on the Internet where you can engage in debate and try to convince others of your views. But this is not appropriate in Wikipedia, because we focus on creating an encyclopedia. (What Wikipedia is not.)
Don't assume that there is a specific author behind each article. A common misunderstanding among newcomers to Wikipedia is the assumption that one article equals one author. This then leads to the fact that �