Welcome to Wikinews
Getting started as a contributor
Welcome! Thank you for joining Wikinews; we'd love for you to stick around and get more involved. To help you get started we have an essay that will guide you through the process of writing your first full article. There are many other things you can do on the project, but its lifeblood is new, current, stories written neutrally.
All Wikimedia projects have rules. Here are ours.
Listed here are the official policies of the project, you may be referred to some of them if your early attempts at writing articles don't follow them. Don't let this discourage you, we all had to start somewhere.
The rules and guides laid out here are intended to keep content to high standards and meet certain rules the Wikimedia Foundation applies to all projects. It may seem like a lot to read, but you do not have to go through it all in one sitting, or know them all before you can start contributing.
Remember, you should enjoy contributing to the project. If you're really stuck come chat with the regulars. There's usually someone in chat who will be happy to help, but they may not respond instantly.
The core policies
Places to go, people to meet
Wiki projects work because a sense of community forms around the project. Although writing news is far more individualistic than contributing to Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, people often need minor help with things like spelling and copyediting. If a story isn't too old you might be able to expand it, or if it is disputed you may be able to find some more sources and rescue it before it is listed for deletion.
There are always discussions going on about how the site could be improved, and your input is of value. Check the links here to see where you can give input to the running of the Wikinews project.
Find help and get involved
Write your first article for Wikinews!
Use the following box to help you create your first article. Simply type in a title to your story and press "Create page". Then start typing text to your story into the new box that will come up. When you're done, press "save page". That's all there is to it!
Change to Red dust storm engulfs Sydney revertedEdit
I have reverted your addition of a source to this article as it was not used in the development of the article. If you wish to add points from the source that are not available in the already listed sources, them please do so and re-add the source. Otherwise it is somewhat unhelpful to add unused sources as the reviewer must read all sources listed for an article. --Brian McNeil / talk 11:50, 23 September 2009 (UTC)
|Wikinews does not publish reports on events that have happened three or more days ago. If no sources can be found with details that have come to light within the past 2–3 days, then this story may be deleted.|
I've left some remarks on the talk of this as my immediate reaction; I know it is still marked as developing, but it could do with a look at organising into a more-structured form. --Brian McNeil / talk 14:24, 28 March 2013 (UTC)
I've just been copyediting NSW government starts trial of hunting in national parks. Just a hint about sentence complexity. When writing, try and ensure that you don't have too many clauses in a sentence or it becomes too hard to follow. Take this sentence:
- The NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell announced in May 2012, supported by the Game Council, the trial of hunting in national parks as part of a deal with the Shooters and Fishers Party to get electricity privatisation legislation through Parliament.
Wait, was O'Farrell supported by the Game Council, or was the announcement supported by the Game Council, or was the hunting trial supported by the Game Council? The inclusion of that extra clause "supported by the Game Council" makes the sentence tangled and complex.
I rephrased it to this:
- In May 2012, the New South Wales Premier announced the trial of hunting in national parks as part of a deal with the to get electricity privatisation legislation through Parliament. His announcement was supported by the of New South Wales.
Try reading both aloud, possibly to another person. It's worth paying attention to this kind of thing as tangled, knotty writing can leave readers confused about who said what, about the sequence of events and so on. Clear writing is essential to what we are trying to do on Wikinews (and on Wikipedia, incidentally).
I'm going to have to fail the article on copyright grounds—the latter half of the sentence is a direct verbatim copy from the ABC source!—but I just thought I should include some instructions on how to improve your copy writing for future articles. —Tom Morris (talk) 09:26, 15 February 2014 (UTC)
- Hi. I found the lede needs some work, more than I felt I could do as reviewer. --Pi zero (talk) 18:41, 16 February 2014 (UTC)
Well. It's really quite an interesting item (imho). More than that, it's also an example of a type of article I'd really like to see us get good at (I mean "us" as both "present company" and "Wikinews in general"). I put a great deal of thought into the review, and have tried to write up a thorough set of review comments.
(Sorry the review queue has been a bit sluggish the past couple of days or so; improving our review capacity is an obviously-necessary long term goal for the project.) --Pi zero (talk) 17:29, 22 July 2014 (UTC)
It seems like you just need to get the hang of drawing from sources while writing in entirely your own words. In my experience, one of the most frustrating pieces of advice around is "write in your own words"; it seems to be implying this is easy, when it's really not — until at some point, it just "clicks" for you, and then it all gets a lot easier. Until it clicks, though, this is one of the more difficult things to do. For me, a really striking experience was reviewing a Wikinews article by a veteran Wikinewsie who is especially good at synthesis (also at original reporting, but I digress); as I checked the article against the sources, I realized that each sentence, often each phrase, in the article was using information from distant places in a source, or even from different sources; while pieces of information that occurred right next to each other in a source often ended up far away from each other in the Wikinews article. It was an impressive, clear demonstration of just how thoroughly dissimilar to the sources a synthesis article can be, and I wanted to find a way to share that experience with others to help them along with this aspect of writing. I tried to write an essay about it, but couldn't capture that vision of how the synthesis text related to the source texts. I wondered if maybe some sort of interactive page could do it, and shortly after that I started working on a software project to make wiki pages interactive — but I'm still working on that technical challenge so I can try out the idea. --Pi zero (talk) 03:10, 23 July 2014 (UTC)
Hi. I'm really hopeful we can get this one passed. It needs some rearranging; see review comments. I did a bunch of touch-up to try to get as much as possible out of the way sooner rather than later, to give the article its maximum opportunity for success. --Pi zero (talk) 16:45, 25 July 2014 (UTC)
- Published. Felt fairly solid, on the final review. There's always something; as hinted by the comment from Gopher65, it would have been a stronger article with a bit more of the wider context — like, does five or ten violations a month mean the border is heating up? (I thought I understood, from a comment or two in the sources, that it's heating up) --Pi zero (talk) 22:46, 27 July 2014 (UTC)
Contributing Reporter AwardEdit
Well, I did publish it. However, it had problems; honestly, if I'd been reviewing it when first submitted I'd have not-ready'd it. Please see my review comments and . --Pi zero (talk) 23:43, 6 August 2014 (UTC)
Contributing reporter awardEdit
As you may have gathered, we're pretty inconsistent about remembering to award these; but I have noticed you've got a bunch more published since I figured "about seven". --Pi zero (talk) 20:46, 10 August 2014 (UTC)
Article failed reviewEdit
One of your articles, American researchers find a large asteroid held together by forces other than gravity, failed review today. I got the article into a nearly publishable state. It mostly just needs sources for some of the unsourced material in the article. — Gopher65talk 17:11, 14 August 2014 (UTC)
After a couple of readings of this, I'm still left trying to figure out how this fits together. An 'open source' phone, yes; but, what's it called? It could do with a couple of quotes from someone on the project, ideally explaining the significance of the N900 phones in this. --Brian McNeil / talk 14:55, 9 October 2014 (UTC)
Election committee for ArbCom elections?Edit
In this discussion two volunteers are sought for election committee to elect ArbCom that comprises of six people. At Wikinews there is not many people who could be possibly trusted with either of these two roles. If you could volunteer as the election committee member -- this could just require a total of about 5 minutes of your time on two-three days in July -- this would be really appreciated.
ArbCom is a non-political body of Wikinews which mediates and makes decisions in case of disputes that may not be solved by direct communication. Its role is that of arbitration; normally cases arise exceptionally rarely, perhaps less than one case in five years.
The election committee members are not ArbCom members - they only look after rules and procedures of the election: each its member needs to read the links provided in the discussion linked above, and ensure that
- candidates are eligible to run (do this during the nomination period)
- candidates are not nominated outside of the nomination period
- voters are eligible to vote (do this during the voting period)
- voters do not vote outside of the voting period
- voting is closed and six winners are announced by the specified deadline (on the day when the voting ends)
Often everything merely runs smoothly and not need any attention other than you monitoring the elections and announcing results at the end. (It is also needed to create pages where candidates are questioned, and to mark discussions as closed after the voting is complete, however if I recall correctly these tasks are often done by a sysop.)
If you would like to volunteer, please leave a message at the discussion linked above. I would be glad to help and support you. Thank you.
Hi Wikiwide :-)
Thanks for signing up at welcome-a-bit.
I've set up User:Wikiwide/wab/dev/email for you. Here is a list of categories, and any newly created submissions on these topics will be delivered to your inbox within 10 minutes of creation.
The first batch will list the full contents of the 'Developing' category and you get it now. In the future you will receive notifications of only freshly added entries which you did not yet read before.
If there are any problems, leave me a message either here, or by replying to any of these e-mails.
If you like, you can get involved in 'welcoming' the articles too, just leave the authors a quick message or several and keep track of the conversation on their talk page. After a day or so, edit the article if they've abandoned it or are asking you to help, but otherwise keep proposing improvements on their talk page.
Re: welcome-a-bit (March)Edit
It has been several weeks after you signed up for the 'welcome a bit' notification. Does it work for you? Did it help you with editing new drafts? Do you wish to continue receiving the notifications?
This month I have identified a bug in DynamicPageList extension, which prevents me from excluding archived articles from the initial results. This has been addressed by suppressing the first notifications continue to work as expected.
I see you may have received some notifications twice, in the case when one article belongs to two categories which are interesting to you. I hope to fix this by the end of this month.