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The Salem Wiki:Contents Guide has been created with the aim of being a compendium collating guidelines to follow when you decide to edit a page.

Pages

How do I create a page?

If you see a red link on an existing page and you want to create the page it points to, simply click that link and it will point you to the editing form. Type the content, then save the page.

Alternatively, you can type the title of the page in the search box and press "Go". If the page already exists, it will take you there, but if it doesn't, you can click the red link with the page title, and it will take you to the editing form.

How do I delete a page?

Only administrators can delete pages, and only they can restore deleted pages. If you created a page accidentally and would rather get rid of it, do not blank it; blanking is considered vandalism and, if repeated, can get you blocked. If you think that a page should be deleted, leave a comment on the admins' Message Walls with the reasons. However, if you accidentally uploaded the wrong image, there is usually no need to delete it: simply upload another one under the same name, and it will replace the original image.

How do I improve a page?

  • Feel free to add pages following the appropriate guidelines, especially where there are red links for missing pages.
  • Feel free to supplement stub articles. They will not grow if they aren't nurtured.
  • If all you're going to do is make a new page from a red link, leave a sentence or two, mark it {{stub}}, and walk away: don't. Wait until you have more time to devote to that page.
  • You may know (American) English well. Not everyone else who watches the show does. Respect that you may even be an American who does not read or write American English as well as others. If you notice grammatical errors, correct them.
  • Use the special templates where appropriate. They are artisan crafted to make your life and everyone's much more engaging. Read the documentation for those templates: it explains a lot. If there's not documentation and using it is not obvious, ask a wise contributor to write some so that you are not caught unprepared in the future.
  • Be aware of the way some pages are structured. Some page types have special guidelines that we like to keep consistent. If they're in a Category, the Category may have a link to the preferred format.
  • If you see an empty heading, your instinct should be "fill it", not "delete it". Removing an empty picture frame leaves a barren wall.
  • Clean up articles  doesn't mean blanking everything that's there, just removing what is repeated or mistyped.
  • Talk amongst yourselves! The comments section is a great place to suggest changes, especially if you're not sure about changing something yourself.
  • Don't move pages without a good reason (and probably discussion). If you are clear to move a page, please be sure to leave behind a redirect so that we don't get broken links.
  • Don't bulk delete someone else's work. Admins notice this sort of thing, and you may find your changes reversed.
  • If you're citing an outside source, like Wikipedia or IMDb, don't just copy and paste. Attribution is good policy. Use <ref>References</ref> and {{Article footer}} (which contains <references />) into automatic footnotes.
  • Don't alter an article that is marked "This article is actively undergoing a major edit.". Someone is taking their time to contribute and it is taking longer than expected. Why don't you wait and see what they've come up with? You can edit when they're done or approved by an admin.
  • We don't know what is in the minds of the show's writers, so never take something as set on stone.

Naming

  • Characters should be called by the name they were most known or most often called throughout the series (e.g. Mary Sibley instead of Mary Walcott; Anne Hale instead of Anne Mather; Countess Von Marburg instead of Hecate or Medea).
  • The article title must be the subject's official name and in its singular form (except for species or lists, which should then be in plural form). The article title should be official but also concise, hence, the character's name must be the name most commonly used, or the name they are most often referred to, within the series.
  • When an official name is not available, one that fits the subject's description should be used (marking the page with { { Non - Canon banner } } on top).
  • Ranks should also not be included, unless the character is known only by the title, with or without his/her name. (eg. Reverend Lewis or Mrs. Hale).
  • Use parentheses to distinguish similar articles (e.g. Book of Shadows and Book of Shadows(object)).

Layout guide

Main article: Layout Guide

Pages must be identical on an aesthetic level. For a further description, see the main article.

Infobox Images

Where possible, the infobox's photo must be official, such as promotional posters. Screencaps and stills will be listed only in the gallery, or alongside the text, such as episode overviews. When a promotional poster is not available (as in the case of recurring and guest characters), it is recommended to choose a good quality image that is representative of the character.

Categories

Main Article: The Salem Wiki:Category Guide

Categories are the associations of several pages with similar content that make it easy to skim the content to read only pages with similar content (eg. Powers). Categories are created by admins or content moderators to avoid conflicting and/or similar categories; If you believe that new categories should be created simply leave a comment in the message wall of one of the admins or under the page in question.

Marking

There are different types of marks, also known as tophats or alerts, These templates notify the reader about the status of the article itself, such as stub, disambiguation, or spoiler. Below are listed the most frequent, with a brief description of why they are attached to certain pages and how to behave when you run into them. These warnings are posted at the top of the page, boxes accompanied by the distinguishing trademark of Salem, a green triangle.

  • Article Stub: A stub is a short article That can be expanded with more information on a subject by any user. Are considered stub articles with little content, but that it's sure can be epanded in the near future (eg. a character, an episode, a recurring element in the series).
  • Candidates for deletion: a rare but still present flag on Salem Wiki, this flag marks all those pages deemed unnecessary or incorrect and for which, by common consent, has been taken (or is underway) the decision to remove them from the site.
  • Conjectural name: Although the article is based on canonical information, the actual name of the subject is conjectural.
  • Episode in progress: similar to a work in progress flag, this flag is affixed to upcoming or currently broadcasting. The page is being Constantly updated (starting the next day to broadcast for major spoilers) .To prevent vandalism or conflicting editing Generally the page is blocked.
  • Historical: This alerts marks the disambiguation of the show's characters and historical characters that share the same name, but also historical events, especially Salem Witch Trials.
  • Mature: a category and alert template created to group all pages about topics not suitable to anyone, as they may contain coarse language, sexual references, and / or graphic violent images and descriptions that could offend the sensibilities of some readers.
  • Official content flag: Affixed to article containing material officially released (WGN Salem official website, generally) so it must not be changed.
  • Preseason alert: This flag warns that the article contains pre-season spoilers and information including overviews, and is subject to change by the time of broadcast. Therefore should be added only information from reliable sources. See Canon.
  • Spoiler warning: This template is used to mark a page as having major spoilers. For more information on this, see Spoilers.
  • Work in Progress: similarly to a stub article, a page marked as a work in progress is a still incomplete article, but with enough content. Can be considered a sort of next step to the aforementioned stub. As the title suggests, in fact, someone is taking their time to add content. Consider it an 'under construction' alert.

Linking

Linking should be limited to (1) the infobox, (2) the first occurrence of the word or phrase in each article, (3) linking to the page again if the first mention and link is under a different term or alias, and (4) at least one scroll/page/window's distance from the previous link (in its first instance under the section that's around a page or scroll down). This is because spamming too many wiki links makes articles difficult to read. Likewise, headings should not contain links.

As much as possible, link using the whole article name, and simply rename the linked word if deemed necessary (e.g. [[Mary Sibley|Mary]], [[Salem, Massachusetts|Salem]]).

Canon

Main Article: Canon

A canon perspective will strive for verisimilitude; the article will be written as if the authors existed as observers within the Salem World, and the characters are real as depicted on the show, and not as they were in reality (e.g. Cotton Mather will be described in the biography and the physical description as he is represented on the show and not based on the actual Cotton Mather).

Save for the "In History" section (see below), the "Trivia" and/or "Behind the scenes" sections, the rest of the article should contain only canonical contents as as are shown on the show, even if they use terms only inspired by real events or people. If different canon sources contradict each other or are inconsistent then the higher tier of canon - as listed on this page - takes precedence and will be considered the correct one. If the contradiction is between different pieces of information that are on the same tier of canon then the most recent piece of information will be considered correct. However, the inconsistency or contradiction can still be mentioned in the article - in a "Notes" or "Behind the scenes" section, or as a reference.

Tiers of Canon 

There are several tiers of canon, running from most important to least. This means that if there are conflicts or contradictions in the information from different sources then the higher canon source will be considered the correct one, although the conflict can of course be mentioned in the notes or references of an article. Whenever there are conflicts or contradictions in the information from the same tier of canon, the most recent piece of information is canon.

  1. The Show : Salem itself and any other information that comes directly from Adam Simon or Brannon Braga. This includes script releases/episode transcripts as long as they follow the aired show exactly.
  2. Deleted scenes: Scenes from Salem that were written and/or filmed but never aired, original drafts of scripts, etc
  3. Officially-licensed sources of information: the social networks (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram).
  4. Trusted news sources: Well known or respected news sources such as newspapers, magazines and their websites.

How to set up the contents in the right sections

Throughout the Salem serie

This section is dedicated to the development of a particular character or a relationship in the course of the episodes. These events, when they are very long, can be inserted into a tabber separating them depending on the season. Events and characters' psychology must be as faithful as possible to what is shown in the TV series and not depending on headcanon.

Real World - "In History"

This special section is dedicated to events, characters and real terminologies. This section is intended to give the reader an overview of what inspired the authors (eg the real witch trials, historical characters) and it can also contain non-canon events, since this section is about what really happened in history or the beliefs and traditions associated with magic and witchcraft, past and present.

Trivia

In this section will be written (1) the etymology of some particularly complex term (eg possession or exorcism) (2) obvious theories and anticipations from the same characters (3) curiosities related to the characters, locations or events described (4) reasonable theories.

Headcanon and fanon

These topics should be discussed exclusively in the comments section or in a forum discussion; if placed on the page, passing them off as canon, they will be removed.

Edit Summary

An edit summary is the changes or additions you've made when editing a page.

Every time a page is edited, it would be appropriate to allow a brief edit summary to what has been done, in order to make other editors aware of the changes, whether it is to check for any mistyped or grammatical error, or simply reading only the new addition.

How and where to write the brief edit summary

When you edit a page there is a box at the top or side of the article that states "Add a summary of your edit". Click the text in the box, or anywhere in the box and leave your summary. Generally if you are editing a particular section, appoint such a section as /* section name */ and provide the brief summary. Sometimes it is possible that the section name appears by itself, depending on whether you choose to edit with Visual Editor, or Classic / Source Editor.

The summary should, as per definition, be brief and clear. If the changes are conditioned by a forum discussion, mention it. it is recommended to discuss and voice your thoughts via comment or forum thread before making major changes, and be sure to follow The Salem Wiki policy and guidelines. For any doubt, consult one of the administrators or content moderators.

Minor edits

Minor edit means that only a superficial difference exists between your edit and the previous versions of the page. Even when making a minor edit it is best practice to leave a brief edit summary which can be simply summed up with one of the expressions set out below:

  • Spelling and grammatical corrections;
  • Typography and punctuation corrections;
  • Fixing incomplete wikilinks.

Therefore adding or removing content from an article, or adding or removing visible tags such as Stub tags or cleanup tags is not considered minor edits.

Copyright

The contents of Salem Wikia are the result of its editors' work who with passion and interest are trying to provide information to fans of this show. Therefore respect their work and do not pass it off as your by copying it on other sites. Accredit always the Salem Wikia as a source if you copy material from here.

Except where otherwise specified, the text on Wikia sites is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License 3.0 (Unported) (CC-BY-SA).

Please see Wikia:Licensing for more details.

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