Collaboration: Unstubify

Knife

Searching for adventure
Retired Wiki Staff
This collaboration is a successor to the Unstubify PipeProject. Many things are the same, just no sign-up list. I find that for such a general project like this there would really be no point since as editors we're all essentially responsible for preventing or getting rid of stubs.

The collaboration is devoted to get rid of the many stubs that have accumulated since the beginnings of the wiki and preventing new stubs from being created.

Goals
The goals of this Collaboration are to....
  • To provide more info for stubs.
  • To add as many categories as possible that fits the article.
  • To add as many templates as possible that fit the article.
  • BONUS – Add more images.
  • BONUS – Rewrite the article if needed.
  • BONUS – Increase navigation by adding more links from other articles.

Basic Article Format
There are five basic things every article should have (numbers 2-4 do not necessarily have to be in order):

  • What is the origin of the subject?
    The '''Main Page''' is the primary portal of the ''[[Super Mario Wiki]]''.[/u]).
    [*]Where is it located? How is it accessed? How can it be unlocked?
    It can be accessed by typing in the URL http://www.mariowiki.com/Main_Page.
    [*]What does it do? What is its purpose?
    The Main Page is used to announce news, both about the wiki and [[Mario]]. It also serves as a hub for [[Users]] and [[Guests]].
    [*]Which characters can it be used by? What things are a part of it? What appearance does it have?
    The Main Page can only be edited by [[Sysop]]s due to a large potential of [[vandalism]]. The Main Page includes [[link]]s, [[Featured Content]], [[Mario News]], and a [[Did You Know?]] section. The top of the Main Page also displays the number of articles on MarioWiki.
    [*]What templates can be applied? What categories can be applied? If possible, what images can be added?
    [[Image:Main_page_2012]]
    ...
    {{Protected pages}}
    [[Category:Wiki pages]]
    [[Category:Core pages]]
Here's the finished product:

[[Image:Main_page_2012]]

The '''Main Page''' is the primary portal of the ''[[Super Mario Wiki]]''. It can be accessed by typing in the URL http://www.mariowiki.com/Main_Page. The Main Page is used to announce news, both about the wiki and [[Mario]]. It also serves as a hub for [[Users]] and [[Guests]]. The Main Page can only be edited by [[Sysop]]s due to a large potential of [[vandalism]]. The Main Page includes [[link]]s, [[Featured Content]], [[Mario News]], and a [[Did You Know?]] section. The top of the Main Page also displays the number of articles on MarioWiki.

{{Protected pages}}
[[Category:Wiki pages]]
[[Category:Core pages]]
Not every article needs to use this format. This is only a guideline.

Merging
Since merging is an important way to remove stub articles, you should know how to do it properly and efficiently. Adhere to the following guidelines before merging an article:

  • Do not merge without consensus – Generally, it is considered unorthodox to merge pages without approval from the community. Place {{Mergeto (Template:Mergeto)}} and {{Mergefrom (Template:Mergefrom)}} on the proper articles. Afterwards, create a Talk Page Proposal (MarioWiki:Proposals#Talk Page Proposals) supporting your opinion. If the proposal passes, you have authorization to merge the articles.
  • Do not copy & paste – A simple copy & paste will not be sufficient enough to constitute a merge. The formatting has to be changed, information needs to be relocated to the proper locations, and duplicate information must be deleted.
  • Create redirects – Creating redirects will prevent other users from recreating the merged article and shows the reader the proper page for the information. Redirecting pages is easy; simply remove all the content on the page and replace it #Redirect [[Merged article]]. In some cases, redirects are not necessary. For example, if the redirect is a fan-made name, it should be deleted instead of redirected.
  • Merge talk pages – After the article has been merged, be sure to merge the talk page. All discussions from the previous talk page should be moved to the merged article's talk page. Make a note of where the previous discussion began and where it ended. If the merged article's talk page has not been created yet, use the move feature instead of manually moving the talk page. However, you must still make a note of where the previous discussion began and ended. Once the talk pages have been merged, place {{Delete}} on the old talk page.
  • Replace links – Look through other articles redirecting to the merged article and correct the links. An easy way to find the articles is to click on "What links here" in the toolbox. Edit any navigation templates as well. This is not required, but will make the links accurate.

Here is an example of how 2 stubs can be merged together to create a more complete article:

[[Image:Featured article example]]

Featured articles are articles that represent the best the Super Mario Wiki has to offer. The Featured Article Nomination process was created in order to highlight quality articles representative of the Super Mario Wiki.

{{Stub}}
[[Category:Community pages]]
[[Category:Main page components]]
and
[[Image:Featured image example]]

Featured Images are quality, intriguing, witty, provocative, rare, important, and otherwise simply interesting images that can be found throughout the site's articles. Users are encouraged to submit and vote on nominations for the Featured Image displayed on the Main Page.

{{Stub}}
[[Category:Community pages]]
[[Category:Main page components]]
can be merged to create...
[[Image:Featured content example]]

Featured Content represents the best the MarioWiki has to offer. Featured Content consists of Featured Articles and Featured Images. Featured Articles are articles that represent the best the Super Mario Wiki has to offer. The Featured Article Nomination process was created in order to highlight quality articles representative of the Super Mario Wiki. Featured Images are quality, intriguing, witty, provocative, rare, important, and otherwise simply interesting images that can be found throughout the site's articles. Unlike Featured Articles, voters on Featured Images do not need to provide a "good reason". Users are encouraged to submit and vote on nominations for the Featured Content displayed on the Main Page.

[[Category:Community pages]]
[[Category:Main page components]]
Of course we no longer use Featured Images any more, but that was just for the sake of the example.

Tips
  • Don't overthink it – The unstubbed articles do not have to be perfect or extremely detailed. As long as the criteria above is covered, the article should be fine. Of course, this isn't an excuse to do a half-ass job; most unstubbing requires effort otherwise they wouldn't stay as stubs.
  • Replace small words – Short words should be substituted for larger words. This makes the article longer and looks more professional. For instance, replace words like "got" with "obtained" and "beat" with "defeated". Also, don't overuse pronouns.
  • Split long sentences – Short sentences which are clear and concise are better than confusing long sentences. A common problem is that all the information is written in the first sentence, depriving other sentences of info. An introductory sentence like
    "The '''Lucky Clover''' is an item that can prevent four missteps and can be bought in shops for 50 [[coin]]s in ''[[Dance Dance Revolution: Mario Mix]]''."
    is not acceptable. A long sentence like that should be split as:
    "The '''Lucky Clover''' is an item found in ''[[Dance Dance Revolution: Mario Mix]]''. It can be bought at shops for 50 [[coin]]s. The Lucky Clover can be used to prevent up to four missteps."
  • Use available resources – Maybe you have no idea what information to add. Check "What links here" in the toolbox. Another article might have more information about the stub article.
  • Use references – Usually, stubbed articles are about a relatively obscure subject with little information. As a result, some information might need references to maintain the information's credibility. See the Citation Policy for more information.
  • Consult Writing Guidelines (MarioWiki:Writing Guideline) – Writing Guideline pages often deal with short articles and therefore it is important that you familiarize yourself with them.
  • Pace yourself – Set a realistic expectation for yourself. Maybe your goal is to unstub at least one article per week or even one stub per day.

FAQ
Q: What is a stub?

A: Any article lacking sufficient information. If you are unsure whether an article is a stub, bring it up on the article's talk page.

Q: What if I don't know anything about the stub?

A: There are always ways to look up information. Consider checking the walkthroughs on GameFAQs or simply Google it.

Q: Why are stubs so bad?

A: They make the wiki look unprofessional and incomplete. See the latest post in this topic for information on progress.

Q: Is there a way to stop users from creating stubs?

A: As of September 2010, a new rule is being enforced regarding new stubs. Any new stubs created will be deleted. Creating new stubs is also a level one offence (see Mariowiki:Warning Policy). As such, this should no longer be an issue. However, since judging an article as a stub is a subjective process, sysops have the final say in the deletion.

Q: What happens to newly created stub articles?

A: As of January 2012, an extension to the previous rule regarding new stubs is being enforced. Newly created stub articles have a week to be unstubified otherwise they face deletion.

Q: What if it is nearly impossible to find/add more information to a stub?

A: You might want to consider merging it, deleting it, or simply removing the stub tag. Merging works great since little information is lost and the merged article has more information. Deleting only works if the subject is extremely minor and doesn't need to be merged anywhere. Removing the stub tag is easiest option, but make sure the article has sufficient information as it is.

Q: Are all short articles stubs?

A: While stubs are usually short articles, short articles are not necessarily stubs. For instance, if the Mario article was only 20 sentences long, it would still be considered a stub.

Q: What if I see an existing article that should be marked as a stub?

A: If you do not feel like you can expand that article but believe it should be marked as a stub, go ahead and do so. Your claim may still be contested by another user who believes the article should not be marked as a stub.

Q: Where's the sign-up section that was in the wiki version of this project?

A: There is no more sign-up section because it truly is every editor's responsibility to to unstub articles. Instead of worrying about why your name isn't on an arbitrary list, maybe you should unstub some articles?

Q: What is the purpose of this topic?

A: To inform people about stubs and how to get rid of them. It can also be used to bring up questions about whether a particular article should be considered a stub or what information is needed to unstubify an article. Periodically, the topic will be used to update you on the progress of the project and any new policies that affect stub articles.

Now get out there and unstub some articles (Category:Stubs)!
 

Mario's Painting

HEY LUIGI, WHAT'S DA HOLDAAAAAAP!!!?
(3.) is murderous to my eyes. :p

I would be nice to change the colors around a bit, and could you please break some paragraphs into smaller chunks.

Sorry for being so picky.

Related to the project, though, does removing short articles with stub templates that do not qualify for stubs count as working for this project?
 

Mario4Ever

A price for everything.
Core 'Shroom Staff
Retired Wiki Staff
Knife, I think you have a broken link in there somewhere.
 

Knife

Searching for adventure
Retired Wiki Staff
La Marionette said:
(3.) is murderous to my eyes. :p

I would be nice to change the colors around a bit, and could you please break some paragraphs into smaller chunks.

Sorry for being so picky.

Related to the project, though, does removing short articles with stub templates that do not qualify for stubs count as working for this project?
Yes, that does count because that is considered properly classifying stubs. I may write a new section just regarding what a stub is, supplemented with examples.

The post is still under construction, but I can't figure out where the broken link is. And somehow the instructions for merging pages got mixed in with the basic article format. Huh...
 

Knife

Searching for adventure
Retired Wiki Staff
Okay guys, I'm finally done with transferring the old PipeProject into this collaboration. I added quite a bit of content and reformatted most of it (wiki->forum isn't exactly the easiest transition), so I advise you to read it again if you have read it in the past. I especially advise those who have never read the project before to read it. Even if you have no interest in unstubbing articles, hopefully you can carry some of this knowledge into your general editing style.

I welcome any ideas on how to format this better or to add any new content to add to the first post. Since I'm already posting, I'm going to update everyone on the progress of the project.

As of 9/14/2012

Statistically, we're doing pretty good; only 1.5% of all articles are stubs (or exactly 184 articles), a dramatic improvement since this project first started. When the project first started in 2009, almost 15% of all mainspace article were stubs! The reason this happened was mostly because of mass merges and new articles diluting the percentage, but I like to think this project made some impact on the overall drop in stubs. The no new stub policy practically assures that the percentage won't go up and while existing short articles can still be marked as stubs, that really shouldn't make much of an impact given how rare that occurs.

However, the articles that did persevere as stubs since the project began are some of the toughest stubs to vanquish. Do you think you have what it takes to tackle the John Leguizamo article? That thing's been a stub for more than five years! So while we might not have much left to unstub, getting the remaining stubs will be a challenge. Good luck and keep unstubbing!
 

Zero777

Middle Eastern Federation
I'm coming aboard, I can help with this and I think I know a few articles I can work on.
 

Knife

Searching for adventure
Retired Wiki Staff
Great! Let me know you need help or just have questions.
 

Shokora

L'esclavage D'amour
Core 'Shroom Staff
Retired Wiki Staff
There used to be 20+ stubs in the Wario Land 4 category. I destubbed those, and I'll help out with more stubs that I feel I am knowledgable about.
 

Knife

Searching for adventure
Retired Wiki Staff
Ah, thanks. Must have been before my last update though since there are exactly 184 stubs left, same as last update.
 

Baby Luigi Rescuing Mario

*insert Shakira music here*
If I get the time, I'll unstub Mario Kart Arcade GP articles. This includes the courses which seriously needs expansion.
 

Knife

Searching for adventure
Retired Wiki Staff
Good luck. The only way to get some real info out of those subjects is to look at video clips on Youtube. Unless you're fortunate enough to have a Mario Kart GP arcade machine near where you live and have the money to spend $5 per game session.
 

Baby Luigi Rescuing Mario

*insert Shakira music here*
Knife said:
Good luck. The only way to get some real info out of those subjects is to look at video clips on Youtube. Unless you're fortunate enough to have a Mario Kart GP arcade machine near where you live and have the money to spend $5 per game session.
You're in GREAT luck. I have a playable ISO of Mario Kart Arcade GP 2 installed in my computer that works perfectly.

Pictures like these and this are my (and my sister's) screenshots. I can also do texture dumps for obtaining maps and preview pics. If I have the time and the motivation, I'll get these articles like Rainbow Downhill, Pac-Mountain unstubbed in no time.
 

Knife

Searching for adventure
Retired Wiki Staff
That's awesome, Mario Kart GP series have always been a hard to cover niche of coverage. If you can get shots of items in the series as well, that would be great. A lot of the items in the series do not have articles yet.

Also, I've noticed that a lot of remaining stubs are level articles, therefore I encourage anyone active in Collab:Levels to work on the level stubs. Kill two birds with one stone.
 

Knife

Searching for adventure
Retired Wiki Staff
I'll leave that up to the mods to decide. Probably doesn't need to be pinned though, the only project that has been pinned is the Levels collab and that should probably go down at this point.
 

Knife

Searching for adventure
Retired Wiki Staff
As of 11/12/2012

Tackling the remaining stubs is a grueling process; 1.3% of all articles remain as stubs (or exactly 162 articles). Pretty conservative progress since the last update, but progress nonetheless. Most unstubbed article were likely level articles, so thanks for taking care of those. Something I've noticed is that about half of the remaining stubs pertain to locations/stages. Some may not even qualified for stub classification and should be fine without much expansion. Good luck and keep unstubbing!
 

NSY

Celestial Guide
There's still a bunch of stubs out there, bumping so we can eliminate them.
 
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