CZ:The Author Role
As an author, you collaboratively write encyclopedia articles and help supplement them with things like bibliographies and image galleries (see CZ:Subpages for the full list of supplements). You also benefit from the "gentle expert oversight" of Citizendium editors-- experts in their field--who can certify articles you help write as meeting certain approval standards befitting of quality and accurate encyclopedia articles. If you join us, you will become part of a vibrant online community where you discuss with others the best way to craft article content, debate project policies and development, and sometimes even joke around. What is more, you can do all this with a mission in mind: to help create a quality encyclopedia that is free to the world (see Why Citizendium?).
How do I get started?
- Begin articles!
- Do you know a topic enough to start an encyclopedia article about it? Then start a new article! No one assigns work to authors. It is your own interests that should guide your authoring. Still, if you'd like some ideas, you can look over the lists of topics at our Core Articles Initiative (click along the gray tabs atop the blue box up top) or our User-Requested Articles.
- Add to articles
- You can join in where others have already been at work. on Citizendium we collaborate globally and produce better articles that way.
I think I'm ready to get started. Is there anything else I should know first?
- You can get involved with workgroups
- See Workgroups in the left-hand column, under "project pages"? (You might have to scroll up.) Click on that. You can add yourself as an author to any workgroup, and join the group's mailing list. Then you can look at the recent changes, look over the offerings so far, and--maybe most importantly--expand our content about basic topics.
- Monitor project-wide recent changes
- From any page at all, look to the left, under "project pages," for the "Recent changes" link. Click that and explore the links you see. That will give you an idea of what has been going on on the wiki lately. Note that you can opt to view up to 500 changes at a time. You can help others out and talk about what you're doing, either on the article's talk page or on the person's "user talk" page. (Go to the person's user page and then hit the "discussion" tab.)
- Look into our latest initiatives
- We often have some community-wide initiatives going on, that you can join.
How does collaboration work?
A robust wiki is strongly collaborative. Articles are unsigned, so new contributors don't feel they're stepping on the toes of the previous author(s). (You can still see who has worked on an article, however, in the page history: click the "history" tab.) Authors take pride in their work, but all articles are owned and managed by the whole community. We all take responsibility, and mostly we negotiate (on talk pages) to a mutually acceptable compromise.
This content is free forever--so, if it's good enough, people will be inspired to improve it indefinitely. This is an opportunity to create vast amounts of content that represents the full spectrum of human understanding, in a way both credible and neutral. And free!
- CZ:We aren't Wikipedia. We do things differently here.
- How to edit an article (Technical help; how to use MediaWiki)
- How to use talk pages (where we explain edits and come to agreements)