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American Girl Wiki:Article Creation

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Overview

New articles are the way the Wiki grows. However, each article needs to be well done. Every new article should have a strong backbone and outline for new editors to come in and add information, and articles that don't do this make it so much harder for people to contribute as a whole new outline must be done and the article is essentially scrapped.

Or, long story short: It doesn't matter if you are the first to create an article. It matters if you are the first to create a GOOD article. Quality Over Quantity.

Basic Formatting Rules

  • All articles and uploaded pictures must have categories listed at the bottom of the pages. Most things on the wiki apply to characters or lines; there is a category for almost everything. At the bare minimum, use the character name or brand line. Use [[Category:TYPE]] to locate categories.
  • Articles and descriptions of items on pages should never consist of one or two short lines, a short list of items, or only two or three sentences. "Juan is Ana's son", "shirt and overalls and sandals and hairclip" or "Molly's green dress with white ribbons" is not an article anymore than "blue dress with ruffles" is an article. Write a good opening paragraph and do a good setup of the article; write full, proper descriptions.
  • Any article that is simply a copy-paste of any website descriptions or catalog descriptions will be deleted immediately. This is not intended to be a rehash of the website and doing so constitutes a copyright infringement. Furthermore, most descriptions from the catalog are not written neutrally; they are written like ads.
  • All new articles should have a basic layout in likeness to articles of a similar nature. If you're not sure, please look at other pages like the article (for example, if you are creating a character page, look at another character). While the article need not have everything, it should have sections if these are needed (and they are probably needed more than they aren't). Without this, the article will be deleted.
  • All articles need an opening line or paragraph describing the topic. Sections with no description don't work either.
  • Any article that is simply uploading the picture to the page is NOT an article.
  • Keep your personal opinions OUT of articles.

Suggested Article Formatting and Description

  • Refer to left and right using proper left and proper right; that is, according to the doll's left and right and not the viewer. (e.g. if the doll is facing you, the left is on your right side.)
  • Spell out all numbers below ten (zero-nine) and all numbers that begin a sentence.
  • Do not use the ampersand (&) in article text or titles: type out the word "and."
  • Be as gender neutral as possible for things such as outfits and Dress Like Your Doll sets. Rather than say that something is for "girls," just say children; after all, not all children with a femme style or who play with dolls are girls.
  • Consequently, when mentioning purchasers of items, say "customers" or "purchasers"; don't say, for example, "mothers" as not all purchasers are women buying items for their children.
  • When describing items, we require sufficient details. As stated above, "green dress with white ribbons" is not a detailed enough description.
  • Avoid opinionated words such as "cute," "soft," "gentle," or "pretty." Just the Facts.
  • Avoid stating how to use things such as hair clips, hair products, purses. Use generic names when needed. "Two red elastic ponytail holders" is better than "Two Scrunchie-Os for putting her hair in pigtails"; "Five pink sponge rollers with white clips" is better than "five soft hair rollers for giving your doll "American Curls"."
  • With some exceptions, character articles and pages about real-world persons or fully named characters should have the DEFAULTSORT tag, so that they would be categorized by their surnames. Make sure to add {{DEFAULTSORT:Lastname, Firstname}} at the bottom of the page before the category tags, i.e. {{DEFAULTSORT:Abbott, Caroline}}
  • Alternate pictures left and right, so that they display evenly.
  • Use {{clr}} to leave a space after a section if needed.
  • Make internal links. A page that doesn't point anywhere is a dead-end page; a page that is neither linked to nor linking to others is an orphan page.
  • If the article is short or incomplete, please put {{stub}} on the page.

Trivia Policy

  • Trivia should be interesting facts about the item or character in question. They may only be tangent to the actual nature of the page in question, but should have a direct relation nonetheless.
Examples:

Good trivia: Kaya's books are set in a time and place that is not technically part of America yet; at the time, some European contact had been made but the Pacific Northwest was still unclaimed by any European nation. The area did not officially become part of the US until the Oregon Country was given to the US as part of the Oregon Treaty of 1846. (From Kaya's character page)
What makes this good trivia?: This item is not about Kaya herself, but expounds on the time period of her stories. It is interesting, but has no place in the rest of Kaya's article, and as such, is placed in the Trivia section.

Poor trivia: The doll is similar in looks to Just Like You 37. (Removed from Just Like You 53.)
What makes this poor trivia?: This item is not about Just Like You 53 herself, but how she resembles another My American Girl doll. As the My AG dolls are intended to reflect various races and ethnicities and while some My AG dolls may have passing resemblance to other dolls for various reasons (ex: JLY 33's release and resemblance to the retired Nicki Fleming doll), the piece of trivia listed in this example was not noteworthy to JLY 53's article and was removed. This type of trivia should only be implemented for a significant reason (ex: JLY 51's resemblance to JLY 3's looks after JLY 3's retirement).

  • Trivia should be interesting and/or helpful. This can be tricky since "interesting" and "helpful" are somewhat subjective terms. In general, trivia that displays a non-noteworthy example of something or whose relation to the page is tenuous at best will be considered uninteresting. Trivia should give a reaction similar to "Wow! I did not know that!" from the reader. If most readers' reactions to trivia is similar to "Meh, who cares?", then it is likely not a good piece of trivia.
Examples:

Good trivia: Felicity’s low cut outfits resulted in the body fabric of the first three dolls being changed from white to skin-colored. (From Felicity Merriman (doll).)
What makes this good trivia?: This item is of great interest to people who are unaware that Samantha, Kirsten, and Molly were originally white-bodied rather than skin-colored and it gives a simple and succinct explanation for the change.

Poor trivia: [Nellie] was also the very first BFF (best friends forever) doll (Removed from Nellie O'Malley (doll).)
What makes this poor trivia?: In addition to being unprofessionally written and using slang tersm, Nellie's character article already mentions she was marketed as the first Best Friend doll by American Girl, thus making this piece of trivia redundant on Nellie's doll page and leading to its removal.

  • Trivia should clarify unique data about items, characters, releases, and other aspects that would be bulky if integrated into an article, and should not repeat or include data that is obvious, ineffective, or with bias towards cultural expression.
Examples:

Good trivia: As of 2016, Melody is the only character in any product line from American Girl to have a book released before any items in the collection were available. (From Melody Ellison.)
What makes this good trivia?: This is of significant note for character releases, citing a previously unprecedented event of having a book and story out before the option of purchasing any collection items.

Poor trivia: This outfit is not labeled "Kaya's" because Kaya would not have worn something like this in her time period. (Removed from Modern Fancy Shawl Outfit.)
What makes this poor trivia?: While the item is not labeled with Kaya's name (a trend that was started later in releases; earlier ones did not add possessives to character items), it is clear that the outfit is tied to and relevant to her collection and perceived to be exclusive to her collection. Furthermore, the note that "Kaya would not have worn something like this in her time period" implies a past narrative of Native peoples; the only way new things are able to be added to Kaya's outfit selection is to provide modern Native clothing, as it would be insensitive to attempt inaccurate Native apparel.

Image Policies

See: Good Article Images and You!
  • Catalog pictures are best in the long run, and override personal images.
  • Images taken privately are to be clear, focused, and only of the item in question with a minimal of background clutter. Clothing should be complete sets without other sets and taken on a doll who is neatly dressed. Accessories and items should be taken alone. A good image can be seen on the School Jumper article.
  • If you can locate good pictures of items or unique images, please upload them. However, do not take pictures that have been watermarked from other sites, such as AG Playthings. Theft of another site's images is a violation of policy and all images of such nature will be deleted.
  • Filenames should be descriptive and relevant to the contents of the picture, i.e. File:KitTypewriter.jpg. A randomly-named file or a file with gibberish/checksum characters, like File:727f2a590028b2bcd20de972d99b1d3a.gif or File:Image1.jpg would be too much of a hassle for administrators and other users as it leaves them guessing for what the image looks like and increases the probability of duplicates.
  • Much like articles, every picture needs to be categorized.
  • Do not upload leaked images. Unless American Girl chooses to upload or distribute pictures of unreleased products, leaked images have no place in the wiki.

Non-Compliant New Articles and Pictures

Any new article that does not follow the basic rules is subject to be deleted immediately with no warning.

Images that do not comply will be removed. Images taken from other sites will be removed and the violator will be given a one week ban.

After two "short" articles by a user or five bad pictures, he/she will be warned and given a one-week block; if any more articles are created that do not follow these rules, the user will be banned for a minimum of one month.

For Article Creation Bans, please e-mail the admins for questions about reinstatement.

This policy is effective immediately, including any changes.

--Nethilia

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