Help:Adding Content

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General principles

  • Search to see whether someone has written a similar page before you start one yourself. Choose the title carefully.
  • Review conventions of the project you are working in regarding e.g.:
    • naming conventions.
    • whether a separate page is justified; perhaps it is better to add the text to a related page (especially if the text is not very long); that page can always be split later, after it has grown.
  • While creating the page and before saving it, check the What links here link on the creation page. Align the new content with existing links, or change the new title, or fix the other links.
  • If nothing points to your new page, the page is isolated. Links to it will need to be added on other pages.

Starting a page from a link, or after a search

To start a new page, you can click a link to the new page. This takes you to the edit mode of the non-existing blank page, which allows creation. You will not be able to create a new page unless you are logged in.

Another way to start a new page is to perform a search for the new title with the Go button (as you should have done before). When the search finds nothing, select "create the article".

Links to non-existing pages are common. They are typically created in preparation for creating the page, and/or to encourage other people to do so. New page links are not really broken, as long as the name correctly identifies the intended content. (A new page link with a "wrong" or misspelled name, or that duplicates content found under another name is "broken", but in a different sense.)

New page links look different from links to existing pages (red links are new pages while blue links are existing pages).

Of course, you can also create the link yourself, in a related page, index page or your user page. However, it may be better to wait with creating links until after creating the new page, especially if the new link replaces one to an existing page. In this case, create the link but press Preview, instead of Save. From preview area, clicking the new link will create the new page (without updating the referring page).

Starting a page through the URL

Using the browser address bar to enter a URL to a new page is an easy way to start the new page process. Easier still is editing the pagename part of a URL for an existing page. Using the URL for the new page displays the default 'no article' message. The default page has the usual Edit this page link, which can be used to begin adding content.

For example, to create a new page for a resource called "My Great Resource", you could simply point your browser to the following address:

http://aclweb.org/aclwiki/index.php?title=My_Great_Resource

Note that spaces are replaced by underscores in the url.

Creating an empty page

A new page is distinguished from a blank page: the latter has a history. Occasionally it is useful to create an empty page.

To create an empty page, save a page with the wikitext __END__. This code will not be saved, it just prevents refusal by the system to create an empty page. Alternatively, first create a non-empty page, e.g. with just one character, then edit the page to make it empty. A page with one or more blank spaces at the end, including a page only containing one or more blank spaces, is not possible.