Infosphere:Dealing with Wikia's wiki
| This page is an essay, and is thus not a guideline or a set of rules, but rather a writing by a member of the community. This essay was written by Svip.|
Comments may be left on its talk page.
- Note: If you are already familiar with the subject, go to the issue section.
Wikia does also have a wiki focused on Futurama. It is generally considered subpar in quality compared to The Infosphere, both by the editors of the Infosphere themselves (whom may be described as biased), but also by Wikipedia's editors, but most importantly, it is generally the accepted wiki by the Futurama community. Big community websites such as PEEL and the Futurama Madhouse are generally large supporters of the wiki, and often smirk with every mention of the Wikia wiki.
On at least two occasions have members of Wikia asked the Infosphere for partnership. First it was an official gesture. Second time it was a couple of community members. Both times did the Infosphere turn down the offer. Both times did the Infosphere that Wikia did not wanted partnership, but rather wanted to become a subject to Wikia's own wiki.
Arguments for joining
The Wikia audience presented the Infosphere with several arguments that joining Wikia would be better in many ways for the Infosphere than the opposite, however, since most of these were generally not true or quickly counter-argued, I shall list the two most important of these arguments.
- Better servers.
- Wikia is a for-profit site, so clearly it must have money. Money means access to hardware and people, and that means bigger and better servers, more stability and more responsiveness.
- Competition is against both our intention
- Joining Wikia would rule us out as competitors and would strive us together to produce the best content available on the Internet (I shall emphasis more on this particular point later).
Arguments against joining
To counter fight Wikia, the Infosphere provided arguments against the produced joining, and I believe - unfortunately - that these arguments still stands.
- Since Wikia is for-profit, it means it has to earn its money somehow, and that is at expense of its viewers. I do not mind ads if they are discreet, but they are not discreet on Wikia.
- Less freedom.
- Running our own server means we can do practically whatever we want, and we have infinitive control. The mere fact that they couldn't even guarantee that we would keep our skin is just a plain obvious showcase that they are too confined by their own power.
- Their servers may be good, but ours is more than good enough for us.
- Our current server is a very decent, though expensive, server. It does more than the work we need for us, which is why we also host the Futurama Madhouse to allow for the server's full capacities. The server has so far not let us down, and its only issues was extraordinary issues with the data centre it was placed in.
- Fan community support - even donations.
- Creating our donation campaign can be viewed as a plea for help from our supports, and with the support and spirit it has generated among the community has been inspiring. It is stuff like this that puts my faith back in humanity. Wikia would not be able to get such a movement going, and why should it? It has ads!
- Bad content.
- If we were to join, we would have to get together with their content. Add to that, that our content would probably be devalued to theirs if we were to merge to their servers, which means articles we both have articles on would "prefer" theirs over ours, and only a manual merge could fix such. Which seems slightly pointless as most of our content is generally better and more thorough. Only on occasion is theirs better.
My reasoning for bringing this up now is not without completely oblivious to timing. Futurama has just been announced to be back on TV, as a new season. Which means that attention for Futurama has once again risen to the need of the general audience. While most will just seek out Wikipedia for information, some people strive to find more details on the subject, that Wikipedia cannot offer. And unfortunately for them, they now have two choices.
A good and a bad choice. But the mere fact that they have two choices could mean that if they first find Wikia's wiki, they will decide that Futurama wikis are probably all crappy, and just head back to Wikipedia, and unfortunately, Wikia rank better on Google than the Infosphere, which means this may be the case for many people.
But not only that, a competition between two wikis is not a good thing. The ideology of wikis is to strive to provide the people of the world with the access to free knowledge. This is a universal project, that everyone should be able to contribute to, making two place to perform this contribution to makes it seem awfully difficult to understand how this is benefiting the Futurama community, the editors, the casual fans and the general public.
Ball in Wikia's court
This essay is a call out to Wikia to make a decision. Do you want to keep this needless competition going or are you willing to give us your content and redirect links to your articles to us?
For those who are interested, perhaps including Wikia people, I will now provide the technical proceedings of such an event.
First must a Wikia administrator export all of their Futurama wiki content using MediaWiki's export function. This function copies both the current article state as well the entire history, it also provides solutions for the undoubtedly user issues that could occur. In other words, we get their stuff without having to do a database insert, which is only to cause a lot more issues.
This content will then be directed to the Infosphere administrators, or me, whom will then use MediaWiki's import function to import all the content, which will be given a special temporary namespace, called "Wikia:", where all the articles from Wikia will be stored. They will also be granted the category, "Former Wikia articles".
Then begins the progress of merging the content of the Wikia articles with the Infosphere articles. Where the Wikia articles have articles, where the Infosphere does not, a simple move of the article out of its namespace should suffice. If the article is deemed in a general lesser state than its Infosphere counterpart, it will be deleted. Is its content useful or better than its Infosphere, a manual merge will thus be required to be performed, with a summary edit of something describing its origins from Wikia.
When all this is performed, Wikia's "futurama.wikia.com" should thus redirect to "theinfosphere.org", of course allowing its uses to type in articles, so "futurama.wikia.com/wiki/Space_Pilot_3000" redirects to "theinfosphere.org/Space_Pilot_3000".