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Blogs remain as one of Avatar Wiki's top social features. Such being the case, blogs are heavily frequented by users and used in a variety of ways, ranging from fanon updates to discussions about Avatar related concepts. Problems arise due to the fact that blogs are generally untouchable by the majority of the community, save for the creator and the administrators.
What I propose are a set of stricter guidelines to
- reduce blog clutter.
- reduce improper or discouraged blog use.
Categories Not a big issue per say, but regardless, in some cases, wrong categories are added to blog posts. The biggest culprits are mostly update categories, image categories or the infamous "Blog post". In an organizational standpoint, this is problematic. My suggestion is to specify and let users know what categories blogs are allowed to go into.
Relevance Possibly the most frequent misuse of blogs is to use them for topics that do not directly relate to Avatar or the wiki. We should implement strict guidelines to at least weed out the blogs that do not at all correlate with the franchise, though the exact extent of what is allowed and not allowed should be proposed and administered.
Subjects to consider include:
- User updates (e.g. I'm leaving for..., I'm gone for..., I'm new here... etc.)
- Noticeably off topic posts (e.g. school, work, family etc.)
Shadow Pages Shadow pages, or to a broader extent, articles meant to be written with complete freedom and no interference, are being seen more and more in blogs. Authors have complete control (save for admins, of course) with their work, which can be there to serve solely as untouchable articles (particularly short fanon articles), or as preparation articles to test changes to already existing articles. There should regulations with regards to these, and user space along with sandbox use should be considered as alternatives.
Multimedia Content Blogs with an overwhelming number of images and videos should be monitored and there must be rules with regards to media use in articles. Copyright is not a thing we want to mess with, so images should be used sparingly, and a limit as to how many images per blog is allowed should be established. More so, videos should definitely be disallowed, unless it is crucial or beneficial in discussions pertaining to Avatar.
Community is an important part of the wiki, no doubt. Therefore, opposition against stricter guidelines with regards to blogs is perfectly understandable. I believe that we should discuss alternative ways to participate in not necessarily on-topic subject matters, without the use of blogs.
Perhaps establish a set of categories specifically for blogs? Introduce templates to allow off-topic blogs to stay for a certain number of days (a week, perhaps) before being deleted?
Share your thoughts below.