This page is an archive of a community-wide discussion. This page is no longer live. Further comments or questions on this topic should be made in a new Senate Hall page rather than here so that this page is preserved as a historic record. 1358(Talk) 21:11, May 9, 2014 (UTC)
At the recent Mofference, the future of the Wookieepedia Newsnet was discussed (you can read the discussion in the log, starting at 04:19). However, no decisions were made and it was decided to discuss this in the SH instead, so, well, here we are. While I personally like the idea of a Wookieepedia-run blog, I don't think anyone can call the Newsnet active. Sure, there are WotM interviews every now and then, and recently Tope posted quite an interesting article, but mostly, it's just sitting there collecting dust. According to QuantCast, the Newsnet gets less than 2,000 pageviews per month. Compare this to the wiki itself — there were almost 900,000 pageviews on January 25.
I don't think it's in anyone's interest to retain the current approach. Something needs to be done, and as I see it, there are a few options.
Nuke it completely. I don't think anyone wants to do this, but as it stands, the Newsnet is sadly quite unmaintained.
Keep it where it is and promote it more. We can feature it more prominently on the Main Page as well as through our various social media outlets, including Twitter and Facebook. I'm sure we can find people who are willing to write articles for the Newsnet once in a while.
Integrate the Newsnet's function with either the wiki or our social media.
Wiki approach: We could consider if the Newsnet could be integrated with the WookieeNews section.
Social media approach: Post articles on FB etc.
An on-wiki blog. Now, when you hear the words "Wikia blog", you probably shudder, but hear me out on this. What I'm suggesting would be an approach where only admins/certain editors that belong to a news team or something could post blogs. This would eliminate the loads of noob blogs and similar that other wikis with blogs are dealing with. In addition, commenting would be restricted to registered users (probably auto+emailconfirmed). Rollbacks and admins would be able to remove blog comments that don't belong. I'm actually kind of interested in seeing whether this approach could work.
My first preference would be to see if we can get the restricted on-wiki blog to work as as described above. If we can, then we should go with that, because that means that people can view the blogs without leaving Wookieepedia (which makes it more visible), and it would be easier to maintain (e.g. not requiring contributors to maintain separate accounts for wiki and blog or learn different coding/formatting syntax).
If that is not possible, then my preference would be to integrate it with our social media platforms to give it more visibility, and give the blog a new, updated look (right now, it's kinda bland).
Copy the addition in the previous step, add it to the top of Template:Wookieenews, and remove the bottom item.
That's a very simple process that takes a few minutes at most and can be done by any autoconfirmed user with 150 or more edits. Now compare that to how the process for posting breaking news on the blog would look:
Find a reliable source for the news.
Contact one of the half-dozen or so people with access to the blog.
Wait for them to respond (if people are busy, this could take a day or two).
Said someone must then take time to write a blog post detailing the news and its impact on Star Wars and/or Wookieepedia.
Post the article on the blog.
Wait for the main page to pick up the new blog post and display it (this can take a day or so sometimes due to caching).
The result is that by the time it gets posted on the main page, it could easily be two days old. The point is that "breaking news" needs to be posted while it's still fresh. The current system of Template:Wookieenews and Wookieepedia:Wookieenews ensures that that can be done. Using the blog for all news postings doesn't.
Don't get me wrong; I'm fine with news being posted on the blog, but only in addition to Template:Wookieenews and Wookieepedia:Wookieenews, not as a replacement for those. A restricted-access blog cannot fulfill the role that the current Wookieenews system does.
(Apologies for the novel; that turned out way longer than I planned.) —MJ—Comlink 00:39, January 27, 2014 (UTC)
Personally, I would prefer revamping the NewsNet, maybe with a different name. The idea behind the NewsNet is that it isn't just news. It's interviews and opinions and trivia and such as well. This could be done on Wikia blogs as well, assuming those can be filtered as mentioned above. However, I've noticed while visiting other wikis that this presents a problem in the RCs. Once a new blog is posted, the RCs is filled for hours, or even days with posts and comments related to the blog. It's extremely frustrating. Not only that, but I feel the format of the NewsNet looks more blog-like anyway. I'd recommend revamping and renaming the NewsNet to better reflect its not-news-specific purpose while featuring it on the Main Page in a more effective way. MasterFred(Whatever) 01:10, January 27, 2014 (UTC)
I also like the idea of us revamping and promoting the newsnet. Perhaps we could look into restarting the WOTM interviews, and maybe throw in the occasional interview with veteran editors. Maybe use it to provide the public with some insight into how the site operates as a whole. Kind of just throwing out some ideas here, what does everyone think? Supreme Emperor (talk) 01:47, January 27, 2014 (UTC)
Yes I said Senate Hall so here we are. As one of the moderators of our Facebook page, being up-to-date is *highly* important in this day and age, especially considering the amount of interest around Episode VII. Toprawa has already proven to me that an updated WookieeNews (via the Main Page) in conjunction with a lively social media presence will result in the highest interest and views to our wiki. I agree with Master Jonathan that we should not merge WookieeNews into blog posts. The process by which it can be edited is not broken and is still user friendly. Now, NewsNet has always been on the side of things. It is not the primary news source for Star Wars information. The purpose of NewsNet, as I have known it to be, was to document Wookieepedia. Albeit, I have been doing my own documentation of Wookieepedia in popular culture and media via the Wookieepedia article. You'll notice we've become quite popular. However to fully document everything that we do, it would best be served by an external format. I think NewsNet can survive, but it definitely needs a kick in the rear. Are we just not dedicated to sharing with others the things that make our community tick? This is what I liked about the interviews with editors, the focus on article drives and Barn-Burners, and even going back to 4-Dot's podcast. We could get back to discarded projects like interviewing authors and artists of whom materials we feature on the wiki. I wanted to see enthusiasm, but of course, you can't force anyone to do it if they don't have the drive (see also Real Life). I wonder if we need to focus on getting back to some goal that we can attain (such as bringing the Wook to Celebration Anaheim--interest seems to have died there as well.) (I apparently like parentheses, just not in articles.) -- Riffsyphon1024 10:00, January 27, 2014 (UTC)
Yes, NewsNet needs a jump-start. I don't have a strong preference as to how that occurs, as long as it isn't using it to replace the existing Wookieenews system. As for the comment about Celebration 2015, I'm willing to work on getting support in the form of flyers/brochures, etc. from Wikia (my new role as a Wikia Star gives me direct access to Brandon Rhea and other staff), but I need guidance on how to proceed. I also would prefer not to be the primary organizer this time around, as my life is busier than it was two years ago and I have yet to master time management. If someone could step up and take the reins, that would be greatly appreciated. (In the interest of keeping this thread on topic, please continue the Celebration discussion here.) —MJ—War Room 21:59, January 27, 2014 (UTC)
As we've reactivated our social media accounts, getting new people to read the blog itself won't be that hard. We have like 50,000 likes on Facebook and almost a thousand followers on Twitter. Linking any blog entries there would definitely result in some exposure. However, the question is, do we have enough material to maintain a respectable blog? One blog entry a month is, in my opinion, too little. What do we want to see on the blog? List below. 1358(Talk) 09:24, January 30, 2014 (UTC)
Update: Over 60,000 now, and that was just in the span of three days. I think that is a bigger factor every day we move forward. -- Riffsyphon1024 09:33, February 2, 2014 (UTC)
As we (well, WhiteBoy) owns the domain wookieepedia.com, I wonder if it would be possible to move the blog to blog.wookieepedia.com. I'm not sure if the domain registrar used provides hosting, but either way, webhosting is very affordable today and I'm sure we'd find the funding if needed. Wordpress can be installed on a website very easily, so this shouldn't be an issue either. Thoughts? 1358(Talk) 09:24, January 30, 2014 (UTC)
As a trivial sidenote, this would allow us to steal the QDB from Zervonn move the QDB to qdb.wookieepedia.com or similar. Just a thought. 1358(Talk) 09:28, January 30, 2014 (UTC)
That sounds efficient if we already control the domain. -- Riffsyphon1024 08:56, February 3, 2014 (UTC)
We used to do these (seems like the last one was in... June). Personally I find the idea great, but as WotM is a rather regular occurrence, we should have one or a few persons who are in charge of handling the monthly interviews. 1358(Talk) 09:24, January 30, 2014 (UTC)
I agree that we need to revive this. However, I really think one person handling this alone is wrong as it will get boring and tiresome soon enough and the ideas for more diverse questions will eventually dry out. A team of two, three or more, discussing and selecting the questions and then organizing the workload between themselves would be the best in this case, imo. Winterz (talk) 16:56, February 1, 2014 (UTC)
I agree that we should definitely bring these back. If we did decide to have a group of people doing them, I would be happy to help with it. Supreme Emperor (talk) 17:01, February 1, 2014 (UTC)
Anyone want to start up with our new WOTM, Protectorate? -- Riffsyphon1024 09:35, February 2, 2014 (UTC)
You know what? If nobody has any objections, i'm willing to take a shot at it. I'll need someone to put it on the newsnet page once i'm done, but it seems straightforward enough. I'll see if I can think up some questions tonight. Supreme Emperor (talk) 14:51, February 2, 2014 (UTC)
Reports of Wookieepedians visiting Star Wars events, such as Celebration coverage
We already do Celebration reports, but are there any other semi-major Star Wars events that Wookieepedians attend? I for one would like to hear their accounts, as sadly Celebrations are rather rare. 1358(Talk) 09:24, January 30, 2014 (UTC)
I would like to ramp this up especially if I am to be attending Anaheim. Perhaps I should have done something that time I was on stage with Anthony Daniels. Oops I've said too much. -- Riffsyphon1024 10:52, January 30, 2014 (UTC)
Well, there are ComicCon events and such. There's one here in Dallas with several Star Wars guests usually in the schedule. I went last year, and plan to go again this year if possible. MasterFred(Whatever) 15:44, February 2, 2014 (UTC)
In-depth articles about various Star Wars topics
Tope recently posted an article titled 10 Actors You Never Knew Had a Star Wars Credit to the Newsnet and I personally enjoyed reading it. Sure, the same information might exist on the wiki itself, but it takes digging and dedication to find it. In Tope's article, it's collected into a nice blog entry. While this isn't exactly a Wookieepedia-related blog, I think we should definitely have cover these kinds of topics. 1358(Talk) 09:24, January 30, 2014 (UTC)
I agree. There are many things in Wookieepedia that fans don't know about. We should try to get out as much about what we cover out there. -- Riffsyphon1024 10:52, January 30, 2014 (UTC)
I second all above. I think Wookieepedians' input on content could work out nicely. :) Winterz (talk) 16:56, February 1, 2014 (UTC)
Agreed. There are some things that the casual user would never dig deep enough to find on here. Supreme Emperor (talk) 17:01, February 1, 2014 (UTC)
Other Wookieepedia-related content
This has been mentioned above. Do you guys have specific ideas? Please list. 1358(Talk) 09:24, January 30, 2014 (UTC)
I support all of these. I think the NewsNet's goal should be to highlight original content. By that, I mean going beyond what you see on the surface of Wookieepedia. Anything like the Celebration blog is gold: highlighting things that we're personally covering ourselves. Anyone can get a recap of the Celebration events from mainstream fan sites, but blogging about what our editors personally experienced is awesome; for example, VIPs who always stop by our table. Toprawa and Ralltiir (talk) 09:38, January 30, 2014 (UTC)
Seconding Tope here. Plus, had this been available during What the Story?, for example, we could have talked with some of our editors about the writing process there and how if differs from Wookieepedia article writing (though discussion on content there may have been limited due to the Hyperspace interaction). -- Riffsyphon1024 09:06, February 3, 2014 (UTC)
This was an idea that met brief success but curtailed off quickly, either because of lack of access or interest. I'm certain there are people that would want to talk to us about Wookieepedia. -- Riffsyphon1024 10:52, January 30, 2014 (UTC)
Reviews of Star Wars works?
It's possibly outside the scope if you think of the NewsNet as just an extension of Wookieepedia (so just factual, concrete content), but people like to read these and, since Wookieepedia has a large readerbase in place, it's possible for them to take off. It would be important to note that the opinions within do not reflect the views of Wookieepedia as a body, of course, but that's an accepted part of the process anyway. There are other Star Wars-centric news sites that do this, so why not the NewsNet? NaruHinaTalk 00:46, February 3, 2014 (UTC)
People do ask us all the time questions like, what's a good place to start? Or what books are better than others? While we tend to throw people towards our Knowledge Bank, I think having some user based reviews could be a good place to direct those wondering. Likewise, the review itself would link to many articles allowing the reader to get a feel for those characters should they want to preview them before reading (aka the quick and dirty). -- Riffsyphon1024 09:06, February 3, 2014 (UTC)