|Concepts and guidelines
|Meta tools and groups
Welcome to Wikipedia! Before starting a new article...
- Please review substantive detail. They might be books, newspapers, magazines, peer-reviewed scholarly journals and similarly high-quality websites.
- Information on Wikipedia must be third-partysources can be found on a topic, then it should not have an article.
- Please searchWikipedia first to make sure that an article does not already exist on the subject.
Generally, an article should closely follow Wikipedia policies and guidelines, especially:
- Neutral point of view
- Coverage of a notable topic
- Supported by reliable sources
Please consider looking at our
Wikipedia is an
Our job is to summarize high-quality and published sources from other places, in the form of Wikipedia articles. That really is all we do! Do make sure that anything you write on Wikipedia is based only on such sources.
Many of the notable topics have already been written by people in the past, and the fact of the matter is, most new articles nowadays are written about fairly obscure subjects. That can make distinguishing topics that are suitable or not suitable on Wikipedia very difficult, and are often
Avoid making an article that you have a
If you want to succeed at this endeavor, you should gain ample experience beforehand and get a feel for what would be a 'suitable' topic to write on Wikipedia. Because the stakes are lower, this is a perfect opportunity to hone your editing skills! Take a tour through the tutorial, ask around at the Teahouse, or read Wikipedia:Article development. Don't be disappointed if you couldn't find a new topic to write for Wikipedia; plenty of distinguished contributors here have only edited existing articles; you could be the one to turn a rubbish article into a great one.
Before creating an article, try to make sure there is not already an article on the same topic. If you don't find a match, perhaps try using a slightly different or broader search term: (Tip: If you want to write an article about a band member, you might search for the band and then add information about your subject as a section within that broader article.)
Gathering references and establishing notability
Before beginning to write any of your first article, gather sources for the information you will be writing about. You will use references to establish notability and to cite particular facts. References used to establish notability must meet additional criteria beyond reliability. References used for specific facts need not meet these additional criteria.
To be suitable for inclusion in an encyclopedia, a subject must have
As noted, the sources you use must be
In general, sources with no editorial control are not reliable. These include (but are not limited to) books published by vanity presses, blogs, web forums, Reddit discussions, personal social media, fan sites, and other similar venues. If anyone at all can post information without anyone else checking that information, it is probably not reliable. Similarly, an opinion column in an otherwise reputable newspaper cannot help establish notability.
Many web sources feature
A good resource for determining the quality of a source is
Sources used to establish notability must additionally be independent: they must not be connected to the subject. A company's own website cannot help establish notability. An interview with someone cannot help establish notability, as these can be bought. A press release repackaged as a news item (
Sources used to establish notability must additionally demonstrate significant coverage: they must discuss your subject for a while, at least multiple paragraphs. A mention in one or two sentences, or the appearance of your subject in a table or list is not enough to help establish notability.
Sources that are not independent of the subject or do not demonstrate significant coverage can still be used in your article to support factual claims, but do not count towards notability. Sources that are not reliable should not be used at all.
If there are reliable independent sources (such as newspapers, journals, or books) with extensive information published over an extended period about a subject, then that subject is notable. You must cite such sources as part of the process of creating a Wikipedia article as evidence of notability for evaluation by other editors. If you cannot find such
If none of your sources are reliable and independent while providing significant coverage, it doesn't matter how many you have. No amount of these is enough to establish notability. Adding many inadequate sources will not help your article get approved, and will delay review as reviewers struggle to check them all.
So your first job is to go find sources to cite. There are many places to find reliable sources, including your local library, but if internet-based sources are to be used, start with books and news archive searches rather than a web search.
Once you have references for your article, you can learn to place the references into the article by reading Help:Referencing for beginners and Wikipedia:Citing sources. If you are using the Visual Editor, it can automatically generate citations for you if you tap the quotation mark icon and feed it a link to a webpage. Please double check these, as they sometimes contain errors or lack important information, such as author and publication date. You can toggle between the Visual and Source editors by tapping the pencil / eyeball icon in the upper right corner of the editing area.
Things to avoid
- Articles about yourself, your family or friends, your website, a band you're in, your teacher, etc.
- If you or someone or something you are personally involved with is suitable for inclusion in the encyclopedia, let someone else add that article. You will have to ignore all your own knowledge and all your own feelings in order to create an article that is appropriately sourced and neutral.
- Advertising and promotion
- Do not An article about yourself is not necessarily a good thing. Please don't write an article about yourself. Focus your brand building on platforms where you control the messaging, and when you eventually qualify for an encyclopedia article, someone else will write one.
- Attacks on a person or organization
- Material that violates our biographies of living persons policy or is intended to threaten, defame, or harass its subject or another entity is not permitted. Unsourced negative information, especially in articles about living people, is quickly removed, and attack pagesmay be deleted immediately.
- Personal essays or original research
- Wikipedia surveys existing human knowledge; it is not a place to publish new work. Do not write articles that present your own original theories, opinions, or insights, even if you can support them by reference to accepted work. A common mistake is to present a novel synthesis of ideas in an article.
- Non-notable topics
- People frequently add pages to Wikipedia without considering Wikipedia is nota directory of everything in existence.
- Things from the future
- A film that has not been released yet, a sports season that has yet to begin, or a book that has not yet been published are all examples of topics that may be suitable for an encyclopedia article in the future, but not yet. Wikipedia cannot see the future.
- A single sentence or website link
- Articles need to have real content of their own. Short articles – called stubs– are welcome, but the article content should be at least several sentences. A good rule of thumb is if you cannot find ten separate facts about your topic in your sources, there might not be enough information for a standalone article.
And be careful about...
- Copying things. Do not violate copyrights!
- Never copy-paste text into a Wikipedia article unless it is a relatively short quotation, placed in quotation marks, and cited using an our non-free content guidelines for text. Material that violates copyright will be deleted very quickly, and you will lose all your progress and have to start over. Superficial modification of material, such as minor rewording, is insufficient to avoid plagiarism and copyright violations. See Wikipedia:Close paraphrasing.
- Good research and citing your sources
- Please research with the AI programs like ChatGPTto compose text or to verify information. These are not reliable, and can make things up.
- Add citations as you write
- Adding a citation to each important statement as you write the article is much easier and quicker than the opposite, where you write the article and then try to find sources to verify the information you added. This is called writing articles backward.
- Articles or statements about living persons
- As with all topics, articles written about living persons must be referenced so that they can be verified. This requirement is enforced far more rigorously for any statements about a living (or recently deceased) person, and reviewers are supposed to remove immediately any unreferenced material before discussing. Add your references as you write the article to avoid this immediate removal.
- Advocacy and controversial material
- Please do not write articles that advocate one particular viewpoint on politics, religion, or anything else. Understand what we mean by a neutral point of view before tackling this sort of topic.
- Assuming your subject is notable because of similar articles
- Wikipedia's quality control has increased over time. There are old articles that were created when standards were lower that would no longer be considered acceptable today. do not need to be in English.
- Articles that contain different definitions of the topic
- Articles are primarily about what something is, not any term(s). If the article is definesone subject as well as some more material to go with it.
- Local-interest articles
- These are articles about places such as schools or streets that are of interest to a relatively small number of people such as alumni or people who live nearby. There is no consensus about such articles, but some will challenge them if they include nothing that shows how the place is special and different from tens of thousands of similar places. Photographs add interest. Try to give notable.
- Breaking news events
- While Wikipedia accepts articles about not appropriate for our project.
Are you closely connected to the article topic?
Wikipedia is the encyclopedia that anyone can edit, but there are special guidelines for editors who are paid or sponsored. These guidelines are intended to prevent biased articles and maintain the public's trust that content in Wikipedia is impartial and has been added in good faith.
The official guideline is that editors should be volunteers. That means Wikipedia discourages editing articles about individuals, companies, organizations, products/services, or political causes that pay you directly or indirectly. This includes in-house PR departments and marketing departments, other company employees,
Here are some ground rules. Note that this is not necessarily a full list, so use
|Things to avoid
|Things to be careful about
|Great ways to contribute
Note that this only covers conflicts of interest. Editors are encouraged to write on topics related to their expertise: e.g., a NASA engineer might write about Jupiter, or an English professor might write about Mark Twain. Also, Wikipedians-in-residence or other interns who are paid, hosted or otherwise sponsored by a scientific or cultural institution can upload content and write articles in partnership with curators, indirectly providing positive branding for their hosts.
Create your draft
It's always a good idea to draft your article before adding it to the main article space, and it's required for very new contributors. The article wizard will guide you through the steps of creating a draft.
Prior to drafting your article, it's a good idea to look at several existing Wikipedia articles on subjects similar to yours to see how such articles are formatted. The quality of our existing articles varies, so try to pick good ones. Many Wikipedia articles have been assessed for quality, which can be checked on the article's talk page. If an article has been assessed as B-class, or as a Good Article or Featured Article, it is safe to use as an organizational template for your article. You can also consult Wikipedia's
Gather your sources, summarizing what they say in your own words, adding citations as you go. Clearly establish your subject's notability. Disclose any applicable conflict of interest. Adhere to a neutral point of view and write in an encyclopedic tone.
When you feel that the article is ready, you can submit it for review by an experienced editor. If there isn't already a "Submit for review" button on the draft, you can add
And then what?
Now that you have created the page, there are still several things you can do:
Keep making improvements
If you have so much interest in the article you just created, you may learn more about it in the future, and accordingly, have more to add. This may be later today, tomorrow, or several months from now. Any time – go ahead.
To format your article correctly (and expand it, and possibly even make it featured!), see
- Wikipedia:Tutorialto learn how to format your article
- Wikipedia:Writing better articles
- Wikipedia:The perfect article
- Wikipedia:Lead section
Others can freely contribute to the article when it has been saved. The creator does not have special rights to control the later content. See
Also, to avoid getting frustrated or offended about the way others modify or remove your contributions, see Wikipedia:Don't be ashamed.
An orphaned article is an article that has few or no other articles linking to it. The main problem with an orphan is that it'll be unknown to others, and it may get fewer readers if it is not de-orphaned. Make sure there are incoming links to the new article from other Wikipedia articles (click "What links here" in the toolbox) and that the new article is included in at least one appropriate category (see Help:Category). Otherwise, it will be difficult for readers to find the article.
Most new articles are orphans from the moment they are created, but you can work to change that. This will involve editing one or more other articles. Try searching Wikipedia for other pages referring to the subject of your article, then turn those references into links by adding double brackets to either side: "[[" and "]]". If another article has a word or phrase that has the same meaning as your new article that is not expressed using the exact same words as the title, you can link that word or phrase as follows:
[[Title of your new article|word or phrase found in other article]]. In certain cases, you could create that word or phrase as a redirect to your new article.
One of the first things you want to do after creating a new article is to provide links to it so it will not be an orphan. You can do that right away, or, if you find that exhausting, you can wait a while, provided that you keep the task in mind.
Add to a disambiguation page
If the term is ambiguous (meaning there are multiple pages using that or a similar title), see if there is a
Still need help?
- For a list of informative, instructional and supportive pages, see Help directory.
- The best places to ask for assistance are at the Help desk.
- . A volunteer will visit you there shortly!
- For a list of the services and assistance that can be requested on Wikipedia, see Request departments.
- Alternately you can ask a question through the Wikipedia #wikipedia-en-help connect on IRC chat.
- Wiki Education offers a library of trainings for novice Wikipedia editors and students.
Read a traditional encyclopedia