IxWiki:Standards and Conventions
IxWiki is a a wiki dedicated to providing members of the online, roleplaying and nation-simulator game NationStates region Ixnay a means to explore and detail pertinent information relating to their nations, and roleplaying entities. Unlike other wikis related to NationStates, IxWiki places emphasis on roleplaying and information pertinent to the creative literary experience. As such, IxWiki has a dedicated set of rules, regulations, and guidelines in regard to submitting content; all users - including administrative staff - must adhere to these guidelines in order to submit content.
These guidelines, known as IxWiki Standards and Conventions, are detailed herein. New users are strongly encouraged to review these rules and regulations before submitting content. If a user believes an article or submission does not adhere to the Standards and Conventions, please submit a review request complete with the article or submission in question, what standard or convention is potentially in violation, and a the signature of the user submitting the request (which can be done by merely appendeding ~~~~ to the end of a report or request).
Neutral Point of View
IxWiki attempts to maintain a neutral point of view in all articles and submissions. This standard is largely based on Wikipidia's NPOV policy. In short, it is best, when writing an article, to try and view the content of the submission objectively, avoiding controversial language and bias, and (where applicable) giving as broad a range of perspectives. A summary of Wikipedia's policy follows:
Achieving what the Wikipedia community understands as neutrality means carefully and critically analyzing a variety of reliable sources and then attempting to convey to the reader the information contained in them fairly, proportionately, and as far as possible without bias. Wikipedia aims to describe disputes, but not engage in them. Editors, while naturally having their own points of view, should strive in good faith to provide complete information, and not to promote one particular point of view over another. As such, the neutral point of view does not mean exclusion of certain points of view, but including all notable and verifiable points of view. Observe the following principles to achieve the level of neutrality that is appropriate for an encyclopedia.
- Avoid stating opinions as facts. Usually, articles will contain information about the significant opinions that have been expressed about their subjects. However, these opinions should not be stated in Wikipedia's voice. Rather, they should be attributed in the text to particular sources, or where justified, described as widespread views, etc. For example, an article should not state that "genocide is an evil action", but it may state that "genocide has been described by John X as the epitome of human evil."
- Avoid stating seriously contested assertions as facts. If different reliable sources make conflicting assertions about a matter, treat these assertions as opinions rather than facts, and do not present them as direct statements.
- Avoid stating facts as opinions. Uncontested and uncontroversial factual assertions made by reliable sources should normally be directly stated in Wikipedia's voice. Unless a topic specifically deals with a disagreement over otherwise uncontested information, there is no need for specific attribution for the assertion, although it is helpful to add a reference link to the source in support of verifiability. Further, the passage should not be worded in any way that makes it appear to be contested.
- Prefer nonjudgmental language. A neutral point of view neither sympathizes with nor disparages its subject (or what reliable sources say about the subject), although this must sometimes be balanced against clarity. Present opinions and conflicting findings in a disinterested tone. Do not editorialize.
- Indicate the relative prominence of opposing views. Ensure that the reporting of different views on a subject adequately reflects the relative levels of support for those views, and that it does not give a false impression of parity, or give undue weight to a particular view. For example, to state that "According to Simon Wiesenthal, the Holocaust was a program of extermination of the Jewish people in Germany, but David Irving disputes this analysis" would be to give apparent parity between the supermajority view and a tiny minority view by assigning each to a single activist in the field.— From Wikipedia:NPOV
On IxWiki, standards are defined as "those policies which exist and have been formulated by the administrative staff in order to assure peak site performance for all users, ease of readability, and to allow for an enjoyable environment for all users." As such, standards are rules and regulations which insure that the IxWiki experience is homogenous for all users, regardless of their location and perspectives, while still allowing for the maximum degree of creative liberties while, simultaneously, balancing and respecting the rights of others. In this capacity, IxWiki Standards are those rules and regulations which exist and, for all intents and purposes, all users must abide by them to the fullest extent of their definition, while permitting liberties for interpretation where the application of "common sense in administrative execution" is necessary.
To that end, the following standards must be met by all users, and cannot be broken without running the risk of an administrative citation, banishment, or other punitive actions.
On IxWiki, conventions are defined as "those policies or codes of conduct which are established by the community by default, being accepted either as common courtesy, common sense, or otherwise accepted due to the nature of the convention itself." Conventions may be enforced, largely, at the leisure of the administrative staff insofar as they do not violate IxWiki Standards, and may vary on a case-by-case basis, depending upon the convention and its content. In short, conventions are largely a subjective matter and, as such, their execution and enforcement varies given the context of a given instance or occurrence.
Treatment of Violations
Violations of the IxWiki Standards and Conventions are quite rare, considering the amount of traffic received each day, the amount of new articles created, and the amount of edits made each day. Even so, when a violation occurs, it is usually handled quickly and with a degree of professionalism. While the method of enforcement varies depending on which member of the administrative staff handles the issue, there is a general consensus in regards to the execution of punitive measures against users.
Administrative citations are the most common form of punitive action taken by a member of the IxWiki staff. These constitute a simple message on a user's talk page (and, often, a repeated message on the offended submission or upload) detailing the violation and what corrective measure need be taken by the user to correct the violation. More often than not, these involve a violation of template standards, lengthy pages, or some other "mechanical" issue. More often than not, a user is given a grace period (usually seven days from the date when the citation was given) to correct the issue or otherwise engage in discussion with the staff member issuing the citation.
In the case of a violation of the IxWiki Standards, there is usually little room for discussion spare a further explanation of the violation and the appropriate procedures to correct said violation. In general, if a member of the administrative staff has issued a citation, it has already been found in violation of a standard and thus need be corrected as detailed by the staff member.
In the case of a violation of the IxWiki Conventions, usually some discussion need be had in order to clarify the issue and see if any actual correction need be made. A special case is in the instance of plagiarism; this often involves a complaint lodged with the staff over a possible instance of plagiarism. A lodge complaint will result in an immediate locking of both the article against which plagiarism is alleged, as well as the article from which it is believed theft or plagiarism has occurred. This is in order to compare the two in a static environment, free from corrective changes being made immediately prior to the complaint, as well as to set a date in the article's history, after which further complaints might be lodged in the case a complaint of plagiarism is dropped or rendered null.
In the event a grace period is given, the staff member's position is held sound, and a correction is not made, the offending article will enter a state of pending deletion. In short: if a violation is not fixed, that article may be deleted at the leisure of the citing staff member or at the leisure of a staff member conducting routine maintenance or cleaning.
In the event of an egregious violation or repeated violations, a user may face temporary banishment. In this instance, more often than not, a user will be notified on their talk page of the period to which they will be banned (usually twenty-four hours, three days, seven days, or thirty days, though any length of time for the banishment may occur, depending on the violation). More often than not, this banishment will attach to both the username and the IP address of the offender. In instances in which they do not, a user is expected to not conduct edits under a new username or they may, in turn, face further banishment.
In the event of an exceedingly egregious violation or an extensive history of violations, a user may face permanent banishment. In this instance, a user may not be notified; notification of permanent banishment before its execution is not mandatory (and usually does not occur), largely because, in the event of an indefinite banishment from IxWiki, a user is either new or deliberately editing maliciously, vandalizing, submitting illegal content, or submitting pornographic content.
In the instance of a permanent or indefinite banishment, both the username and IP address of the offender will have a banishment attached. If a user is found to be creating new accounts, those, too, will be banished, as well as the new IP address. In the event of a repeated string of violations from a given range of IP addresses, the entire range may be banished.
In the event of the submission of illegal, obscene, or pornographic content, a user may face further penalties, to include the contacting of their Internet service provider in order to request a termination of Internet service and, in turn, may also result in the contact of an offender's local police or law enforcement in order to inform them of the illegal activities being conducted.