Inkipedia:Policy/Manual of Style

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This is Inkipedia's official Manual of Style, which guides you through how articles on this wiki should be written and formatted. Please do not judge this Manual too seriously—be reminded that not all of us have viewed this Manual at all.

Editing Text

The most important part of the wiki, of course, is the text. For our readers to be able to understand and enjoy the material within our articles, this text must be well-written. Here are the basic guidelines:

Grammar and Spelling

Please try to adhere to the rules of grammar and spelling as much as possible. Although not everyone on this wiki is a professional proofreader, you are encouraged to do the best you can in ensuring that your technical details are grammatically correct. If someone corrects your spelling or grammar, do not take it personally. They are simply helping readers.

Pronouns

Please use singular they when referring to a person of unknown gender. For example, someone referring to a player should use they, as the person is of an unknown gender (he/she/other).

If this bothers you, reconstruct the sentence to use a plural subject and use they.

Unacceptable
After checking his inventory, the player gets the Basic Tee.
Acceptable
After checking their inventory, the player gets the Basic Tee.
Alternative
Players should check their inventories to receive the Basic Tee.

Quotes

Please copy text that you are quoting exactly as it is written. This includes any spelling errors and other obscurities. To indicate that you have copied an error (and it is not an error of your own), please use the [sic] tag.

No Contractions

At best, make an attempt to avoid contractions such as "don't" and "can't." These sound very informal and, in general, decrease the formality and professionalism of the article.

Remain in Third Person

A common mistake while editing is to use phrases like the below:

I think the Basic Tee is at the start of the game.

Although this is completely valid due to the grammar rules above, notice that it is expressing the idea in first person. This can confuse the reader a good deal. Who is the "I" speaking?

Second-person statements are also typically not acceptable. Take, for instance, the below phrase:

If you speak to the girl amiibo, she will ask you to complete Octo Valley with a Charger.

These are slightly trickier to spot. Notice how the author is explaining the situation using the reader as the example, as if the reader is the subject of the situation.

In general, attempt to stick as close to third-person as possible. Try this phrase:

Speaking to the girl amiibo in Inkopolis Plaza challenges the player to complete Octo Valley with a Charger.

Or simply

Octo Valley can be completed with a Charger by speaking to the girl amiibo in Inkopolis Plaza.

The only exception is in sections such as Walkthroughs, Tips, userpages, and blogs. In such cases, use second-person instructional text if possible, except for your userpages and blogs, where you can use first person.

Linking

Links are the thread that sews the wiki together. Although their importance cannot be stressed enough, it is also important that you know how to use them properly.

Do Not be Obtrusive

Although links are important, do not let them get in the way of the reader. The following sentence is unacceptable:

Black Trainers are trainers with a white heel (see Cyan Trainers, Purple Sea Slugs, and Pink Trainers.)

Notice how the text seems to acknowledge the existence of the links and seems to "point" at them with the "see" phrase.

This is better:

Black Trainers along with Cyan Trainers, Purple Sea Slugs, and Pink Trainers, are shoes with a white heel.

Although link text stands out from the rest of the text, do not let links halt the flow of the writing.

Avoid "Click Here" Syndrome

Many web designers know that link text that says "click here" is not descriptive and requires the reader to click on the link to discover what article is the destination. This rule of thumb also applies to wikis as well, especially within the article namespace. In particular, "click here" syndrome is to be avoided within standard articles, although its use is also discouraged within the Category, Template, Inkipedia, and Help namespaces.

Short Article, One Link

When adding links within a short article, it is unnecessary to link the same word multiple times. In longer articles, however, the better choice is to "renew" the link for every section.

Treat Readers Like Idiots...

A rule of thumb for music notation is "treat the musician like an idiot." Although this seems odd at first, it makes sense that the composer ensures that the musician does not assume certain dynamics, articulations, etc. without the composer's consent. Composers should also assume that the musician does not fully understand the feel and attempted emotion of the music, and that all needed articulations should be added whether the musician expects them or not.

The same also applies to encyclopedias. Suppose a reader who is inexperienced in Splatoon reads the following sentence:

Capturing a Splat Zone is important to winning in Splat Zones.

Wait, what is a Splat Zone? What makes it "important?" These questions pop out of the reader's mind when he/she reads the sentence.

Be very specific, regardless of the complexity of the topic. Be formal, and define new Splatoon terms as they appear.

...But do not overdo it

Do not be too specific because of the Treat Readers Like Idiots guideline. If how you are describing the feature does not have a linking article, then consider you are going into too much depth. The following article beginning is not acceptable:

Black Trainers are trainers in Splatoon.

Um...what? We already know trainers are trainers. We also don't have an article devoted to trainers.

Do not delve too deeply into how an article is classified. If it is clothing, say that it is shoes, and not that it is a "type of trainers".

Line Breaks

Please use the <br/> tag, rather than the <br> or <BR>. This is because XHTML uses <br/>, and, although probably will not affect the coding of the Wiki or browser generation, it looks more professional.

Multiple Line Breaks

Multiple line breaks (<br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/>...) look messy. If they are in place to align a picture or template, it may be better to use a {{-}} or {{clr}} template instead.

English (American)

Many of Inkipedia's articles are in the American English language. The gear articles' names are from the American version, and other names of the same gear should redirect to that article.

Where possible, please switch an American word, or where spelling is questioned, to a neutral word. For example, the American spelling "traveled" and English "travelled" should just become "went" as necessary.

Where there must be a decision, American will be used; however English will also be made available where possible. In an example template, Template:Color, a redirect from Template:Colour can be used and either template used to the author's discretion. However the word "color", where no ideal synonyms exist, should be kept.

Article titles should follow the American version if if differs (such as E-liter 3K as opposed to E-Litre 3K).

Where there is a collision of interest, the American version should still be used but a clear distinction made at the top of the article must be given (as in the case of Jungle Hat).

Coloring

Unless there is an extreme case with a very good purpose, do not use coloring in articles. There are two major types of coloring:

  1. The whole page is a single color or format. While the universal color scheme may seem much more interesting and "cooler" than the plain, black-on-white text, the inconsistency can be both distracting and irritating. If you have a general color that you want to apply to all pages, talk to the administrators about the wiki's skin or insert some CSS into your personal settings.
  2. A single portion of the text is colored. If you use the colors to apply emphasis, use bold or italic fonts.

Editing of Userspaces

  • Generally, users should only edit their own userspace, unless permission is given by the page's author (e.g. a guest list), or you are genuinely helping the user (e.g. replacing an old picture or fixing poor code).
  • All userpages must adhere to the Polices laid out across the Wiki.
  • If you wish to remove one of your own pages, please use the {{Delete}} template with a summary such as "Author request" and an administrator will do it for you.
    • Note: please note that this is an encyclopedia and not a place to just edit your userpage with cool codes. You are free to edit your userpage as much as you want but please help contribute to improve this wiki.

Thank you for reading!