Help:Guidelines for use of Wikipedia

The following sets of guidelines on reference and inclusion of Wikipedia content within WeRelate are recommended in order to:

  • Make the best possible and most appropriate use of Wikipedia within the WeRelate community
  • To legally, ethically, accurately, and respectfully present Wikipedia scholarship
  • To encourage WeRelate contributors to add comprehensive, well-sourced, and genealogically-relevant content to WeRelate


Referencing Wikipedia content

Pages on WeRelate that have a corresponding page on Wikipedia can be referenced using a template. This template can be used to link to any language version of Wikipedia.

Please add the following template (and heading if it does not already exist) to the page. Substitute Wikipedia’s page name for wikipedia page name and the two letter language code for language code (the default is EN for English).

==External links==
*{{moreinfo wikipedia|wikipedia page name|language code}}

This will add a link to the Wikipedia page and also lets WeRelate’s system know that this page corresponds to a page on Wikipedia.


For more details on the use of this template, please see Moreinfo wikipedia.

Including English Wikipedia content

It is possible to include content from English Wikipedia on WeRelate pages. Originally, this was implemented so that pages would not be completely devoid of narrative content. Please note: this process of inclusion is not perfect and exhibits known problems described below.

If you are editing a page on WeRelate that has a corresponding page on English Wikipedia, you would like to add narrative content to the page, and you cannot currently improve upon the summary introductory lead section provided on Wikipedia, follow the instructions under How to include English Wikipedia content on a WeRelate page.

WeRelate has a process that mechanically includes the summary introductory lead section of English Wikipedia content. When the agent runs (once a week), it translates the template you put onto a page into the Wikipedia text, with all of the links correctly linked to either Wikipedia or WeRelate as appropriate.

Please keep in mind, inclusion of wikipedia content does not add genealogically relevant data to event fields on WeRelate. Dates and places of birth, important ceremonial events, military service or battles, locations of residence, etc., all still need to be established just as they would be for a page without Wikipedia text included.

How to include English Wikipedia content on a WeRelate page

To include the introductory lead section of an English Wikipedia article on WeRelate, with all of the converted links:

Place {{source-wikipedia|wikipedia page name}} on the page where you want the content to appear. Substitute Wikipedia’s page name for wikipedia page name.

Initially, this will only add a line that says Source Wikipedia. This text will later be replaced by the actions of an automated process, which will convert the source-wikipedia template into two new templates: {{Wp-wikipedia page name}} and {{wikipedia-notice|wikipedia page name}}. The Wikipedia content will be added to the page when a weekly routine is run. WeRelate pages that include Wikipedia text will be refreshed from Wikipedia about three to four times a year (to pick up changes that have been made at Wikipedia).

Note: Do not create the {{Wp-wikipedia page name}} template yourself. It may be several months before content is pulled to populate such templates.


Watching for errors

It is recommended that you Watch the pages you add that contain source-wikipedia templates for changes that occur during the initial automated conversion as well as the update processes that occur a few times a year. Revisions by the "WeRelate agent" may introduce unforeseen errors. For example: this revision caused Cite Errors to display on the page.

Including content from specific sections of Wikipedia article (deprecated)

Note, if the section heading on the Wikipedia article changes, copying the section content as described below will break because the section won't be found. Therefore, the following is discouraged.

The normal Wikipedia inclusion shown above will only acquire the opening portion of the Wikipedia article before the first section heading. If you want to copy a specific section, you do this by including

{{Wp-wikipedia page name-wikipedia section heading}}

in the article where you want the Wikipedia section copied. You will then need to create that template page as well. (Section-specific template pages are not created automatically). Do this by clicking on the "red" template link. You will be offered a chance to create the template page. Do so, using the following three lines:

{{copy-wikipedia|wikipedia page name#wikipedia section heading}}
<!-- This text is copied from Wikipedia. Any changes made will be overwritten during the next update. -->
Pending update

This template will be replaced by the Wikipedia content when a WR routine is run, which happens once or twice a year (more often if someone requests it).

An example of this technique, appears on:

Known Issues

The following are known bugs that could occur when including Wikipedia content. It is not anticipated that development time will be spent to correct these bugs.

  • When including text from subsections of Wikipedia (as described above), when the heading title changes on Wikipedia, it causes the templates on WeRelate to break
  • Ref tag errors such as the one in this page revision
  • Templates used on Wikipedia (such as those to calculate distances) are not duplicated on WeRelate. For example, text that should state “comprises a number of adjacent islands, and measures 16 miles (26 km) by 8 miles (13 km).” may only say “comprises a number of adjacent islands, and measures by .”
  • The process to include text from Wikipedia only includes the text from the English version
  • Errors within Wikipedia text that is included on WeRelate cannot be corrected on WeRelate. The solutions here are to correct the text on Wikipedia (and wait until the next WP>WR refresh) or replace the text with your own written narrative (not text copied from Wikipedia) and reference Wikipedia instead

Can I copy and paste text from Wikipedia?

No, it is recommended that you do not copy and paste text directly from Wikipedia. Wikipedia pages change constantly and contain a number of links in its content that link to other pages on Wikipedia. Copy and pasting loses those additions. Also, text that is copy and pasted does not include the proper attribution that is required.

Titling pages with Wikipedia content

Rule: Pages for people who have a name in the format "givenname surname" should be titled following WeRelate’s established “givenname surname” convention. Even if a WeRelate page has Wikipedia content, it will generally keep its WeRelate title.
Exception: Pages for people whose name does not follow surname conventions AND have a Wikipedia page should be renamed on WeRelate so the name matches the Wikipedia page title
Reason for the exception: In instances such as medieval and renaissance era nobility and for those whose descent from antiquity predate use of a surname, the default page names chosen by WeRelate may not be helpful. For example, when an ancestor’s full name may only have been the given name, may have included lengthy honorary titles, or may have referred to their place of origin or their historical status. In modern genealogy that has now been uploaded to WeRelate, researchers have variously chosen many different names that "fit" into their genealogy programs that may all be defensible and recognizable as referring to a person, but are not predictable. Changing the name to the Wikipedia name establishes one standard for titling Person pages for whom, otherwise, would have no standard name. In addition, it helps identify duplicates by use of the sequence number in the name.


Alternate names

Preferably, the English Wikipedia name should be added to the WeRelate page as an alternate name. In this way, web searches are more apt to find both pages.

“Stage names”

Famous individuals with Stage Names should be entered in WeRelate with their birth name listed as primary. Their stage name can be added as an alternate name. For example, while there is a Wikipedia page titled Julie Andrews, her page on WeRelate would be titled Julia Wells since this was her birth name.

External Links to Wikipedia articles

You can also link to Wikipedia articles on other topics that are mentioned on a WeRelate page, such as civil and military institutions, wars, and other major events.

[[wikipedia:wikipedia page name]] or [[wikipedia:wikipedia page name|label name]]


What should be done in cases of conflict?

In any instances of conflict between users regarding the inclusion of Wikipedia content, Referencing Wikipedia content (as described above) will be the preferred method.