[arch-general] What is the current wiki-poliicy for re-writing contributions?

Jude DaShiell jdashiel at panix.com
Thu Mar 24 12:03:58 UTC 2016

On Thu, 24 Mar 2016, sculy at riseup.net wrote:

> Date: Thu, 24 Mar 2016 07:31:42
> From: sculy at riseup.net
> Reply-To: General Discussion about Arch Linux <arch-general at archlinux.org>
> To: General Discussion about Arch Linux <arch-general at archlinux.org>
> Subject: Re: [arch-general] What is the current wiki-poliicy for re-writing
>     contributions?
> Em 23/03/2016 5:39, ProgAndy escreveu:
>> Am 23.03.2016 um 15:16 schrieb chaos Feng:
>>> On Monday 21 March 2016 12:22:30 David C. Rankin wrote:
>>>> Archdevs,
>>>>    What is the current policy for having wiki-contributions re-written? I
>>>> have been a wiki-contributor for years, I've more than 28 years 
>>>> Unix/Linux
>>>> experience, I am an attorney, a registered professional engineer, and I
>>>> have spent years doing technical writing for NASA MOD and Space Flight
>>>> Operations -- I know technical writing. Over the past year or so it seems
>>>> like every wiki contribution made is re-written to the point that the
>>>> immediacy of the needed information is lost, is replaced by a link, or 
>>>> the
>>>> contribution is reworded in a bewildering manner.
>>>>    Under what criteria does this take place? It has gotten to the point 
>>>> where
>>>> you just get tired of helping -- why bother?
>>>>    Under the current system, the pages are slowly becoming less-useful 
>>>> rather
>>>> than more useful as more and more information is chopped out of pages or
>>>> replaced by links to 3rd-party pages that may (or may not) be there
>>>> tomorrow.
>>>>    When I first began using Arch in '09, the pages were written such that 
>>>> you
>>>> could fully-complete whatever task the page addressed without bouncing
>>>> around from page-to-page hunting for all the pieces of the puzzle. That 
>>>> is
>>>> no longer the case.
>>>>    Don't get me wrong, the Arch-wiki pages are still by far the most 
>>>> useful
>>>> of any distribution, but understanding the criteria under which this is
>>>> taking place will help those willing to contribute determine whether to
>>>> make a contribution or not. The goal being to keep the Arch-wiki, the 
>>>> very
>>>> best that it can be. Thanks.
>>> David,
>>> First, sorry to make you feel your work is undermined.
>>> There are two principles in my mind when doing Arch wiki admin work:
>>> "Remove duplication" & "Upstream first"
>>> 1. Remove duplication
>>> Duplication in wiki is just as bad as duplication in code. It is hard to
>>> maintain. When things change, usually only one location is updated and 
>>> other
>>> places are left there out of date. When user see two sections document the
>>> same thing with different content, they will confuse.
>>> So some sections in "Beginner's Guide" is moved into their own pages.
>>> You could refer the talk page[1] to get the reson behind changes.
>> Hello,
>> Some time ago I stumbled on selective transclusions in the wikipedia
>> help.[1] It seems to be an extension, that allows display of a partial
>> article inside another article.[2] Maybe that would help to collect
>> the necessary information in the "Beginner's Guide"
>> [1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:SELTRANS
>> [2] https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:Labeled_Section_Transclusion
>> ProgAndy
>>> 2. Upstream first
>>> Arch wiki emphasize upstream just as Arch package emphasize upstream.
>>> It is great that Arch Wiki could be the document for every Linux topic. 
>>> But it
>>> is even greater if Arch wiki could be the gateway of upstream document.
>>> If the document is not Arch specific, we hope it is contributed to 
>>> upstream
>>> first and link back in Arch wiki. This way, it is not only benifical to 
>>> Arch,
>>> but also to Linux/Free software as a whole. Thus we specify below policy:
>>> * If the upstream documentation for the subject of your article is well-
>>> written and maintained, prefer just writing Arch-specific adaptations and
>>> linking to the official documentation for general information. [2]
>>> The best thing I like Arch: "Arch is a distribution that acts like just a
>>> distributor". Arch distribute packages which stay as close as upstream.
>>> We also hope Arch wiki could distribute our upstreams document to Arch 
>>> user,
>>> not just duplicate the content here.
>>> It seems some contributors are disappoint about recent changes and I hope
>>> above explaination could make the change more logical. And for every 
>>> change
>>> you do not like, please raise your concern in the Talk page[3]. Changes 
>>> will
>>> be reverted if it is resonable.
>>> [1] https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Talk:Beginners'_guide
>>> [2] https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Help:Style#Hypertext_metaphor
>>> [3] https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Help:Discussion
>>> Fengchao
> Hi there
> ProgAndy's ideia seems nice. Since it's for begginers, it could be 
> referencing a more detailed page and still provide short info.
> But I think this situation is really complex. I wouldn't be using Arch Linux 
> if its configuration wasn't so malleable as it is. And I wouldn't see how 
> malleable it is if it wasn't the way the wiki is.
> As said before, Arch is user-centred. For user-friendliness we have more 
> "domestic" distributions, such as Manjaro, with their own wikis, which should 
> be user-friendly.
> And we have, in the other hand, that thing with begginers. Firstly, I found 
> hard to familiarize with the wiki and the distribution. And many people 
> doesn't have time or conditions to learn stuff. But then, why use a 
> distribution like Arch?
> As I said, it's complicated. But, since Arch is made for users which are 
> willing to have a better understending of the system, I think things should 
> be like that. And/Or ProgAndy's idea for the begginers article.
> Regards,
This probably won't be feasible for now but may become necessary with 
further archwiki user-percieved degradation.  A main open wiki and an 
archlinux basics closed wiki.  For anything to get into the archlinux 
basics wiki it will have to be verified as working and whichever user 
verifies it as working gets credit for verification in the article along 
with the author and the verifier cannot be the author.  Articles in the 
archlinux basics wiki could refer to articles in the archlinux main wiki 
but by themselves will be sufficiently informative to get packages 
functioning on a basic level.  The arch basics wiki is closed to prevent 
what happened to the archlinux main wiki; edits can happen and those edits 
would not happen on original articles in archlinux basics until they had 
gone through verification and the edited version of the articles would 
live in incoming space until either verification or rejection had happened 
due to verification failure.
I do realize any such change will take volunteer hours to do and for now 
the community probably hasn't got those available.  I hope the pain level 
does not rise to a level sufficient to make such changes necessary too.


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