Human Science

What is a wiki?

A wiki is a collaborative website which can be directly edited by anyone with access to it. Ward Cunningham, developer of the first wiki WikiWikiWeb, originally described it as "the simplest online database that could possibly work".Wikipedia is one of the best-known wikis.

A wiki allows users to easily create pages and edit pages others have created. The markup is very simple and requires no knowledge of HTML. For example, surrounding a word with [[double square brackets]] will turn that word or group of words into a link. You can make text italicized just by surrounding the text with double inverted commas.

Editing is very easy to learn, and allows anyone to create a website. Every edit made to a Wikia is stored for as long as the wiki exists. This means you can easily check which edits have been made. You can also easily remove bad edits as you can change back to an older version of the page.

What is GNU Free Documentation License?

The GNU Free Documentation License (GNU FDL or simply GFDL) is a copyleft license for free documentation, designed by the Free Software Foundation (FSF) for the GNU project. It is the counterpart to the GNU GPL that gives readers the same rights to copy, redistribute and modify a work and requires all copies and derivatives to be available under the same license. Copies may also be sold commercially, but if produced in larger quantities (greater than 100) then the original document or source code must be made available to the work's recipient.

The license was designed for manuals, textbooks, other reference and instructional materials, and documentation which often accompanies GPL software. However, it can be used for any text-based work, regardless of subject matter.

See the Text of the GNU Free Documentation License

Copying from Wikipedia

Copying from Wikipedia to this wiki is permissible because both use the same license. However, it is necessary to include the proper acknowledgment so that readers can refer to the original and discover its authors.

Whenever you do such copying from a page in the English-language ("en") version of Wikipedia, please add the following template near the bottom of the page: "Wikipedia|" (inside double curly braces, ie {{Wikipedia|}}). Then before the final brackets paste the name of the Wikipedia article. You need to add similar attribution for other languages of Wikipedia and for other GFDL projects.

Note that Wikia sites are not intended to duplicate substantial portions of Wikipedia. You may copy all or part of an article (and its links and templates) to start off a page on the subject, but you are expected to adapt it so as to reflect this particular wiki's slant on the subject.

User access levels

Different users have access to different functions of the site. Wiki founders are given administrator and bureaucrat access. They can make any other user on their wiki an administrator or bureaucrat


Anyone can read the wiki as well as create new pages and edit unprotected pages, including users without a user account. Any non-banned user is free to create a user account.

Logged in users

Users who have created an account and logged in (this is free and only requires a username and password) can change the title of a page by moving it.

Logged in users can upload an image or other file to the wiki. There are restrictions on which file types can be uploaded.

Logged in users can mark a page on recent changes as "patrolled" to show other users that they have checked an edit.

Logged in users can also customize the display of the wiki using Special:Preferences, as well as maintain a page watchlist.

Autoconfirmed users

Logged in users who have accounts several days old are given the 'autoconfirmed' user right.

Autoconfirmed users can move/rename pages.

Emailconfirmed users

A user with a confirmed email address can enable email messages from other users, and can request lost passwords. Some future social networking oriented extensions at Wikia may also require this.


User with the "rollback" permission are able to revert vandalism and bad-faith edits by using the rollback link on diff pages and user contributions list. They are just like logged-in users, only with one extra button.

Bureaucrats can give users rollback rights by using the form at Special:Giverollback. The action will be logged on Special:Log/gvrollback.


Administrators can delete pages and page histories. They can also undelete a previously deleted page, or undelete specific revisions of it. Administrators can also delete and undelete uploaded files.

Administrators can lock (protect) a page so it cannot be edited or renamed by users without admin rights.

Administrators can block an IP address or user name from editing.

Administrators can revert bad edits more easily using a "rollback" link which appears on diff pages and user contributions lists.

For details, see the administrators' how-to guide.


A bureaucrat can make other users into bureaucrats or administrators and on the wiki where they are a bureaucrat and give trusted users a rollback function on this wiki.

Instructions for bureaucrats

Bureaucrat can grant or revoke rollback rights for users through Special:Giverollback. Once the user's name is entered, a "reason" field along with the options "grant" or "revoke" will be made available, depending on whether the user currently has rollback or not.

Bureaucrats can turn other users into admins or bureaucrats using Special:Makesysop. There is a link to this on the list of special pages.

You will see the following form:


Type the user's name into the box and then press the make this user into a sysop button. To make them a bureaucrat as well as a sysop, tick the Set bureaucrat flag box. You must capitalize the first letter of their user name.

You will see a confirmation message with details of the user name and the rights they have been assigned.

The user will gain administrator access immediately and the action will be recorded at Special:Log/rights this own wiki.

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