Wikipedia:Did you know/Onepage

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Overview

Did you know... is a section you can see on the Main Page. Beginners should consult this Did You Know glossary if they don't understand any of the terms used. Beginners may like to start by looking at a summary of our many rules: this provides links to pages with more detailed explanations (which in turn may link to even more detailed pages).

Here are the ways you can help. The ways are listed in increasing order of the Did You Know experience that is required to do these jobs well. So beginners should choose from the top of the list. Statistics show most people who read this page don't click anything, but that wasn't the intent. Please choose from the list and read on; there's more.

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This one-page format of "Learning DYK" is designed to be a database for the proposal; this one is for printing.


Nomination rules

If you have never written a Wikipedia article, see Wikipedia:Your first article. The following criteria are used to determine whether a nominated article is eligible for Did You Know:

  1. New – The first priority is to understand that the article must be new, because newness can't be fixed later. To make a long story short: At least 80% of the article must be new (seven days old or less) when the article is nominated, or it must be a newly sourced BLP that is at least 50% new content.
  2. Long enough – The article must have at least 1,500 characters of prose – not the whole article, just prose.
  3. Citations – The article must be cited like this.
  4. NeutralArticles on living individuals are carefully checked to ensure that no unsourced or poorly sourced negative material is included. Articles and hooks which focus unduly on negative aspects of living individuals should be avoided.
  5. Free of copyvio or plagiarism – Except for brief, clearly marked quotations, the article does not include material copied or closely paraphrased from copyrighted sources. Material taken from public domain or compatibly licensed sources is properly attributed in line with Wikipedia:Plagiarism.
  6. You knew this but – to settle arguments we wrote this stuff down.

The next step is nominating your article for Did You Know. You can ask a Did You Know regular or see this list of Did You Know administrators, or you can nominate it yourself as described here.

Article length

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C1: Articles must have a minimum of 1,500 characters (including spaces) of prose (not the entire article, just prose) as counted by this script. Did You Know defines "prose" to exclude infoboxes, categories, references, lists, tables, block quotes, headers, images and captions, the "See also" section if any, Table of Contents, edit buttons, "citation needed" and similar superscripted text, and reference link numbers like [6]. More details here.

C2: Proposed lists need 1,500+ characters of prose as defined above. The listed items themselves are not counted as part of the 1,500 DYK qualifying characters.

C3: In practice, articles longer than 1,500 characters may still be rejected as too short, at the discretion of the selecting reviewers and administrators.

Citation requisites

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D1: The hook may not be written yet, because that's part of nominating. But when the hook is written, the hook fact must be cited in the article with an inline citation, since inline citations are used to support specific statements in an article. The hook fact must have an inline citation right after it since the fact is an extraordinary claim; citing the hook fact at the end of the paragraph is not acceptable. Once again, that rule is only for the hook fact, not for every sentence in the article. (Yes, we know featured articles don't have that rule, but that's because featured articles don't have hook facts.)

D2: The article in general should use inline citations of reliable sources. A rule of thumb is one inline citation per paragraph, excluding the intro, plot summaries, and paragraphs which summarize other cited content. Newly sourced BLPs are expected to be thoroughly sourced.

D3: Sources should be properly labelled; that is, not under an "External links" header. References in the article must not be bare URL's according to Wikipedia talk:Did you know/Archive 29#Reference section.

D4: Wikipedia, including Wikipedia in other languages, is not considered a Wikipedia:Reliable source.

D5: Multiple sources are generally required, to ensure the article meets the general notability guideline.

Article sources

Any editor may nominate new articles for Did You Know. Some new articles may be found at:

Rules specific to nom type

New article nominations

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The main page states: "Did you know ... From Wikipedia's newest articles:" How do we determine those newest articles? That's a long story, but remember the intent is to select Wikipedia's newest articles, and articles that aren't new at all are never selected.

  • M2: For purposes of DYK, a "new" article is no more than seven days old when nominated (well, not exactly). This does not include articles split from older articles.
  • M3: For purposes of DYK, 80% new is enough to be considered "new". To add enough new material to make an article 80% new is called fivefold expansion, because four-fifths is 80%.
  • M4: For purposes of DYK, 50% new is sufficient to be considered "new" in a newly sourced BLP; this reduced requirement recognises the time and effort involved in thoroughly sourcing an existing unsourced BLP. Adding enough new material to make an article 50% new is called a twofold expansion, because one-half is 50%.
  • M5: Try to pick articles that are original to Wikipedia (not inclusions of free data sources) and interesting to a wide audience. Working on existing unsourced BLPs, such as those listed at CAT:BLP, is also most welcome – the community is working hard to ensure that all BLPs are sourced in the future, and assisting in eliminating the backlog is a valuable contribution to Wikipedia.
  • M6: Articles that have been featured (bold link) in blurbs on the main page's In the News section are not eligible, nor are items that have been on DYK before (pre-expansion, for example). Articles that have been linked to from the mainpage but were not featured links are still eligible.

Fivefold expansion

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F1: Former redirects, stubs, or other short articles in which the prose portion (not the whole article) has been expanded fivefold or more within the last seven days since nomination (well, not exactly), are acceptable as "new" articles. The content with which the article has been expanded must be new content, not text copied from other articles. For step-by-step guide on how to calculate whether the expansion is big enough and recent enough, see User:Rjanag/Calculating fivefold expansion by hand.

F2: Fivefold expansion means at least five times as much prose as the previously existing article – no matter how bad it was (copyvios are an exception), no matter whether you kept any of it, and no matter if it was up for deletion. This may be a bad surprise, but we don't have enough time and volunteers to reach consensus on the quality of each previous article.

F3: "Seven days old" means seven days old in article space. You may write your article on a user subpage and perfect it for months. The seven days start when you move it into article space. Such moves are often overlooked when enforcing the seven day rule, so we may need a reminder. But if you move the edit history along with the article, we might not believe you moved it, because it isn't obvious in the edit history.

F4: If some of the text was copied from another Wikipedia article, then it must be expanded fivefold as if the copied text had been a separate article.

F5: The age of the previously existing article used to calculate fivefold expansion depends on the date of the next version, not the date that version was created. Explanation here.

F6: The fivefold rule is controversial.

F7: For newly sourced BLPs where there is a twofold expansion requirement, the above rules can be applied after appropriate substitution of "two" for "five".

Calculating 5-fold DYK eligibility
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G1: To calculate fivefold expansion since a specific day, which I will call July 18, 2008, for definiteness: 1. Count the characters in the prose-only portion of the current version. 2. On the article's history screen, click the latest time stamp before July 18, not the first time stamp for July 18. 3. Divide by the prose-only characters on that screen.

To explain the counter-intuitive step 2, I emphasize the difference between an edit's change, which you see by clicking "prev" on the history page, and an edit's result, which you see by clicking the time stamp on the history page. Although an edit's change and an edit's result are listed on the same line, the edit's change really comes between that edit's result and the previous edit's result. Similarly, an edit's result really comes between that edit's change and the next edit's change, even though an edit's change and an edit's result are shown on the same line.

Example. On January 1, 2006, a 100 character stub is created. At 1:00 on July 18, 2008, the 100 characters are expanded to 1000 characters. An hour later at 2:00 July 18, 2008, the article is further expanded to 2000 characters. When I say it that way, the expansion is clearly 20x (or equivalently, 95% new) and qualifies for Did You Know. But to count the 100 characters, they wouldn't be listed as 1:00 July 18. The 100 characters existed on July 18 before 1:00, but the 100 characters were the result of the previous edit. So you would have to click the 2006 edit to count the 100 characters, even though 2006 is much too old for Did You Know. If you made the mistake of clicking the first edit for July 18, you would get the result of that first edit and therefore miss the change of that edit, and count 1000 characters, resulting in 2x expansion and an unjust disqualification.

G2: For newly sourced BLPs where there is a twofold expansion requirement, the above rule can be applied after appropriate substitution of "two" for "five".

What articles not to shoot for 5-fold DYK
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K1: Some people think we're mindless bureaucratic meanies for wanting a 100,000-character article to be expanded to 500,000. But please don't miss the forest for the trees. We didn't want you to nominate a 100,000-character existing article; we wanted a new article. If it isn't new, you can make it a Wikipedia:Good article or a Wikipedia:Featured article but not a Did You Know article. If you don't like that concept, then criticize us for promoting new articles, not for the details of defining newness. As the Main Page says, "Did you know ... From Wikipedia's newest articles:".

Hook

Hook requirements

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A hook is what you see, several times, in the Main Page's Did You Know section. Each hook begins with "...".

H1: The hook should be formatted like the hooks you see on the Main Page. Checklist here.

H2: The hook itself should be concise (fewer than about 200 characters, including spaces). More details here.

H3: The hook should refer to established facts that are not likely to change, and should be relevant for more than just novelty or newness.

H4: The hook should be neutral.

H5: The "Did you know?" fact must be mentioned in the article and cited with an inline citation to a reliable source since inline citations are used to support specific statements in an article. A lot of submissions are made which fail to meet one or both of these criteria. Nominators should ensure that their submissions meet both of these criteria or their submissions will fail DYK eligibility.

H6: Articles and hooks which focus on negative aspects of living individuals should be avoided.

H7: When you write the DYK item (or "hook") please make it "hooky", that is, short, punchy, catchy, and likely to draw the readers in to wanting to read the article. An interesting hook is more likely to draw in a variety of readers. Shorter hooks are preferred to longer ones, as long as they don't misstate the article content.

H8: Once again, you need a new, qualifying article, not just a hook, no matter how interesting the hook is.

H9: Piping the article link is sometimes discouraged, but many hooks are better when the link is piped, and show on the Main Page that way. Disambiguated article titles like Gene Green (baseball) are always piped like this: '''[[Gene Green (baseball)|Gene Green]]'''.

H10: Don't falsely assume that everyone worldwide knows what country or sport you're talking about.

H11: If the subject is a work of fiction or a fictional character, the hook must involve the real world in some way.

H12: No links to disambiguation pages. Here is the Wikipedia guideline.

H13: If the hook uses a possessive apostrophe after the qualifying article, use {{`}} or {{`s}} to keep the bold text and the apostrophe distinct e.g. "... that John's house (etc)?" If the article is in italics (e.g. a ship's name), use the slightly different templates {{'}} or {{'s}} e.g. "... that HMS Hood '​s anchor (etc)?"

Hook format

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The hook format should resemble hooks on the Main Page. Specifically:

I1: Entries should start with an ellipsis of exactly three full stops (periods) (not the ellipsis character …) and a space. See WP:ELLIPSIS.

I2: The hook (or in the unusual case of multiple sentences, only the hook's first sentence) should end with one question mark. That is because the implied "Did you know ..." grammatically makes the first sentence, and only the first sentence, into a question that needs a question mark.

I3: Don't write "... That". That is, don't capitalize the first word after the ellipsis (usually "that") unless it's a proper noun.

I4: The hook must link to a qualifying new article.

I5: The title of the new article must be in bold.

I6: If your article title appears unpiped in the hook, don't capitalize the first word unless it's part of a proper noun, even though that word is always capitalized in the article title.

I7: No redlinks in the hook.

I8: No space before the question mark. No period before the question mark.

I9: No external links in the hook.

Hook length

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Q1: The hook itself should be concise (fewer than about 200 characters, including spaces). While 200 is an outside limit, hooks slightly under 200 characters may still be rejected at the discretion of the selecting reviewers and administrators. Multiple articles are an exception. You can count the 200 characters manually. Otherwise, select the text as it displays to the public (not from the edit screen which contains wikitext), and then copy and paste it into a blank document using a free website like this, or using an external software program like Microsoft Word that has a character-counting feature. Don't use the character count on the suggestion page history screen, which includes signatures and other comments.

Multiple articles

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L1: A hook introducing more than one article is an exception to the hook length rule. If your hook introduces more than one article, you can do a basic calculation by subtracting the number of characters in the bolded character string for each additional new article beyond the first. If having done that the hook length is still 200 characters or less, it is probably an acceptable length. If it is over 200 characters after the subtractions, it may still be considered eligible if the hook is reasonably compact and readable, but such hooks will be considered on a case-by-case basis.


Images & presentation

Image rules

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Pictures accompanying the DYK hook should be:

  • J1: freely licensed suitably and freely (PD, GFDL, CC etc.) licensed (NOT fair use, see Wikipedia:Non-free images) because the main page can only have freely licensed pictures;
  • J2: suitable, attractive, and interesting at a 100x100px-wide resolution;
  • J3: already in the article; and
  • J4: relevant to the article.

J5: The standard image code is <div style="float:right;margin-left:0.5em;"> [[Image:filename.jpg|100x100px|ALT TAG]]</div>. If you do not use this code, the layout of the Main Page may be affected in some browsers.

J6: You can usually use a flag for a topic with a national connection.

J7: The hook should be modified to include (pictured) (or perhaps (pictured, flag of Zdxyrastan) or whatever) in the appropriate place to make the connection to the image. The words "pictured", "flag of Zdxyrastan" (or whatever), and the parentheses, should all be in italics.

J8: Sounds: Sounds accompanying the DYK hook should have similar qualities to pictures, and should be formatted using {{DYK Listen|filename.ogg|Brief description}}

Presentation format

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E1: Either write out your nomination naturally, or optionally, format your nomination using {{NewDYKnomination}}.

E2: Add it to the suggestions page under "Articles created/expanded on [date]", where the date is when the article was created or when the expansion started. If the date is over seven days old and you can't find it, sorry, it isn't considered a new article.

E3: Note that you should only use one of the above templates for the original hook. If you want to suggest a second, alternative hook for the same article submission, just type it in manually. The above templates output useful code for each submission and if you employ them for alternative hooks, you will mess up the page formatting.

E4: When saving your suggestion, please add the name of the suggested article to your edit summary.

E5: If you nominate someone else's article, you can use {{subst:DYKNom}} to notify them. Usage: {{subst:DYKNom|Article name|October 30}} Thanks, ~~~~

Post nomination

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Objections to your nomination

A1: Hooks are subject without notice to copyediting as they move to the Main Page. The nature of the DYK process makes it impractical to consult users over every such edit. Also, watch the suggestions page to ensure that no issues have been raised about your hook, because if you do not respond to issues raised your hook may not be featured at all.

Patience

A2: If there is no response, please bear with us: we won't delete the hook unless someone has raised an unsatisfied objection, even if it has reached the Template talk:Did you know#Older nominations section, according to this. Or if the hook has been approved, we are especially unlikely to delete the hook until it goes on to a preparation area for the Main Page. Other hooks listed in the same section as your hook are also waiting, and scrolling to the bottom of the page gives you an idea of how much longer to wait, as described at Daily headings on the suggestions page.

A3: If you can't find the hook you submitted on the suggestions page, in most cases it means your article has been approved and is in the queue for display on the Main Page. You can check whether your hook has been moved to the queue by reviewing the queue listings. You can also check the Main Page, and check the archives (where it goes after being on the Main Page).

A4: If your hook is not in the queue, not already on the Main Page, and not in the archives, it has probably been deleted. Deletion occurs if the hook is more than about eight days old and has unresolved issues for which any discussion has gone stale. If you think your hook has been unfairly deleted, you can query its deletion on the discussion page, but as a general rule deleted hooks will only be restored in exceptional circumstances. So be sure to satisfy any objections to your nomination before that happens.

Proofreading

This page is about proofreading hooks, although proofreading articles is also helpful. Only a few thousand people will look at a Did You Know article during its six hours of fame – but almost a million people will load the Main Page during that time, including the hooks, although most people don't really look at the hooks. Source http://stats.grok.se/ . One Main Page misspelling or comma can change the world more than you realize.

Places to look for mistakes

Proofreading Template talk:Did you know

Look at Template talk:Did you know so you know what I'm talking about. It's a very long page, but you don't need to proofread the whole thing. Just proofread the changes since the last time you edited the page. This can be done using the circles on that page's history page. That is, go to the top, find the "history" tab, click, click "500" if necessary to find your last edit, find the corresponding circle and click it, and click "Compare selected versions". This will show all changes since your last edit, so you don't have to proofread the same changes twice. If you don't make any changes then there won't be an edit to find that way, so record the most recent time stamp on a list on paper, and for next time use that instead of your most recent edit.

If you find proofreading mistakes at Template talk:Did you know, first decide if your change is big, little, or in between. In general, changing a couple words without changing the intended meaning is a little change. If an entry sounds as if English isn't the author's native language, then changing several words can be considered "little". For a little change, just change it; nobody really wants to know that you added a space after their three dots. For an in-between change, change it and then explain what you changed. For a big change, suggest a rewritten hook using an ALT. Look through the rest of the page to see how ALT's are formatted.

Don't assume that all hooks use the {{NewDYKnom}} template parameter "hook=". A hook that needs proofreading is more likely to have other problems such as not using the template at all – and anyway you need to check ALT's, some of which occur in the middle of a paragraph full of comments. Just because an ALT isn't formalized as an ALT, doesn't mean someone can't copy it to a preparation area without noticing typos.

Hook proofreaders who are familiar with the rules of Wikipedia:Did you know/Nomination can ensure compliance with those rules. User:Shubinator/DYKcheck automates some of that process.

Specific errors to look for

Of course you should fix or question anything that's wrong, but here are some specific errors you can look for. Most of them are from our nomination rules, linked above. The search for many of these problems should be automated. See User:Art LaPella/Proposed Main Page proofreading bot, which was mostly written in 2007.

Search strings

Some routine proofreading errors can be found by searching the whole page for the following strings:

  • "..t" to find a missing space after the three dots, which are called an ellipsis. Remove the space. Note this trick only works if the hook begins with "that", "the" or some other word beginning with "t".
  • " ?" to find a space before the question mark at the end of the first sentence (remove the space)
  • "...." to find an ellipsis with more than three dots (remove all but three)
  • "}.. " (that's a curly bracket and two periods) to find an ellipsis with only two dots (it needs three)
  • "'.. " is a variation of "*.. " if AltN is used
  • "}that" to find an ellipsis that is missing altogether
  • "} that", "'that", "' that" are variations of "}that"
  • "pictured) " (note the space) to find (pictured) or (object pictured) unitalicized. Our convention is to italicize that word or words when there is an image.
  • "'')" (single quote, single quote, parenthesis) is a sign of italicizing "pictured" but forgetting to italicize the parentheses, according to J7

Errors typical of Did You Know

  • the link to the article should be bold (sometimes the article link is missing altogether)
  • the hook should end in a question mark (in case of a multi-sentence hook, the first sentence must end in a question mark, and User:Shubinator/DYKcheck can't automatically check the total hook length)
  • hook length. If it's over the limit of about 200 characters including spaces, I link to User:Art LaPella/Long hook, combined with {{subst:DYK?no}} (which shows as Symbol possible vote.svg), to explain this problem. With practice, you can recognize a hook that's too long by how many lines it occupies on your screen, after mentally excluding wikitext that isn't counted.
  • Don't capitalize the first word of the article title, just because it's capitalized in the title (unless it's a proper noun)
  • Excluding Template talk:Did you know, the word (pictured) should be just after what is actually pictured – especially after the picture has been changed. Therefore, there should be one and only one word (pictured) in the entire list.
  • Duplicate "that", duplicate ellipsis, duplicate question mark ... "that that" at a preparation area or beyond is especially common.
  • Also, if you know all these rules, you can be alert to answer routine questions about those rules.

Errors you would proofread on any page

Remember, almost a million people will at least load this stuff, so routine proofreading is more important than on just any page.

  • spelling
  • grammar
  • capitalization
  • apostrophes
  • MOS:NUM
  • WP:DASH
  • commas after phrases like "Cleveland, Ohio", "Paris, France", and "June 5, 2009" (see comma article), and around nonrestrictive appositive phrases
  • correcting links to disambiguation pages according to this. User:Splarka/dabfinder.js helps find them. Another way to find short pages, which are usually disambiguation pages, is to click "preferences", "Misc", and then change the "stub link" number.
  • italicize books, court cases, ships etc. as described at MOS:TITLE
  • wikify unfamiliar words
  • correct a missing space between a word and the wikilink symbols "[[" for the next word, or between "]]" and the next word

Update process

Approval

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First-time reviewers may find the DYK reviewing guide helpful.

B1:Approval is verifying that all the rules of articles and nominations have been followed, while recognizing that no list of rules can cover everything. The nominations to approve are found at T:TDYK. DYKcheck is intended to automate some of this verifying.

B2: You don't have to be an administrator or a Did You Know regular to approve or disapprove a nomination. Of course the judgments of regulars are less likely to be challenged.

B3: You are not allowed to approve your own hook or article.

B4: At the suggestions page, what do "length, date, and ref verified" and its synonyms mean? Roughly speaking, "Length" (synonyms "size", "article length") means article length; "date" (synonym "history") means new article, and "ref" (synonyms "reference", "source") means citations. "AGF" or "good faith" (referring to Wikipedia:Assume good faith) means that the approver didn't read the reference (it wasn't on the Internet, or it wasn't in English, or a fee was required).

Symbols

B5: If you want to confirm that an article is ready to be placed on a later update, or that there is an issue with the article or hook, you may use the following symbols (optional) to point the issues out. The first two, and the last one, are almost always used when finally verifying or rejecting a hook, because these are what DYK volunteers look for when they are looking for hooks to prepare a new update, or clearing out rejected hooks.

"Did you know...?" template
Queue T:DYK/Q
Nominations T:TDYK
Discussion WT:DYK
Rules WP:DYK
Supplementary rules WP:DYKSG
Reviewing guide WP:DYKR
Archive of DYKs WP:DYKA
Stats WP:DYKSTATS

Within the context of Wikipedia's "Did you know..." (DYK) project, reviewing refers specifically to the process by which a nominated hook and the associated article(s) are evaluated, improved, and eventually either rejected as irreparably unusable or approved. This page is intended as a guide to aid editors in the reviewing process. Keep in mind that, in the end, Did You Know approval is a subjective process. No amount of studying rules, almost-rules and precedents will guarantee approval, nor will violating any rule guarantee disapproval. (D13)

Pick a nomination to review

Nominations are listed at Template talk:Did you know. On that page, the nominations are generally arranged in chronological order, with the oldest nominations at the top of the page. It is best if you start with one of the older unreviewed nominations.

Review the article(s)

To qualify for DYK, an article needs to meet several special criteria, in addition to being checked for normal encyclopedic issues.

  • Check that the article is either new to the English Wikipedia (generally no more than 7 days old), or that the readable prose has been expanded at least fivefold recently (within the past 7 days), or that it is a previously unsourced biography of a living person (BLP) with the readable prose expanded at least twofold recently. In each case, however, older articles or expansions can be allowed. The DYKcheck tool is helpful in evaluating this, or if you want to figure it out yourself, detailed instructions are here.
    • If a new article incorporates text copied from another Wikipedia article, then it must be expanded fivefold as if the copied text had been a pre-existing article.
    • Twofold or fivefold expansion means at least five times as much prose as the previously existing article, no matter how bad it was (copyvios are the only exception), no matter whether any of it was kept, and no matter if it was up for deletion. This may be a bad surprise to nominators, but we don't have enough time and volunteers to reach consensus on the quality of each previous article.
    • A previously unsourced BLP refers to just that, an article, with a living person as its subject, which has no sources, references, citations, etc., regardless of how formatted.
  • Articles that have been featured on the Main Page's In the news section or that have previously appeared as a "qualifying article" in DYK are not eligible. (Articles that have been only linked from ITN or DYK, without being the qualifying article, linked and bolded, are eligible.)
  • Check that the article is long enough. Articles must contain at least 1,500 characters of readable prose.
    • In addition to at least 1,500 characters of readable prose, the article must not be a stub. This requires a judgement call, since there is no mechanical stub definition (see the Croughton-London rule). If an article is, in fact, a stub, you should temporarily reject the nomination; if the article is not a stub, ensure that it is correctly marked as a non-stub, by removing any stub template(s) in the article, and changing any talk-page assessments to start-class or higher.
  • Check that the article contains appropriate citations.
    • The hook fact(s) must be stated in the article, and must be immediately followed by an inline citation to a reliable source.
    • The article in general should use inline cited sources. A rule of thumb for DYK is a minimum of one citation per paragraph, possibly excluding the introduction, plot summaries, and paragraphs which summarize information that's cited elsewhere.
    • Sources must be properly labelled in a References (or similar section), not as "External links".
    • References may not have bare URLs such as [1] or http://example.com
    • Any direct quotation must be marked as such (generally using quotation marks for short quotes and blockquote for longer quotes) and cited to a reliable source.
  • If the article is entirely or substantially sourced to offline or foreign-language sources, verify the basic facts, or at the very least, the existence of the article subject.
  • Check the article to make sure there are no dispute templates. Any such issues need to be resolved before the article is used for DYK. Also, check the recent edit history to make sure that there wasn't a dispute template that was removed without fixing the problem.
  • If the article includes information about living individuals, make sure it does not violate Wikipedia's policy on biographies of living people. This applies even if the article subject is not a living person.
  • Check that the article does not contain plagiarism or close paraphrasing.
  • Consider whether the article deals with the subject in a neutral manner.
  • DYK nominations for articles at WP:AfD should be held pending the outcome of the deletion discussion. If the article is retained, the DYK nomination can proceed, and of course, if deleted, the DYK nomination must be rejected.

Review the hook

Assuming that you have a qualifying article, it's now time to review all the hooks, including any ALT hooks that have been suggested.

  • Check that the hook is properly formatted. If there are formatting problems, you can probably fix them yourself.
  • Check that the hook is short enough. If it's just a bit too long and you can shorten it with a minor change, do it yourself. If shortening the hook would require a more significant change, note the problem. You can also suggest an alternate (ALT) hook that is shorter. Just remember that you shouldn't then approve your own ALT hook.
  • Consider whether there might be neutrality problems. If there is a problem, consider suggesting a more neutral ALT hook.
  • Consider very carefully whether the hook puts undue emphasis on a negative aspect of a living individual. Err on the side of caution, and when in doubt, suggest an ALT hook.
  • Consider whether the hook is "hooky". Try to avoid hooks that take the form of "... that X is Y?" Interesting hooks will often include one or more of the following:
  • Review all proposed hooks for the article(s). If you are unable to approve all hooks, be clear about which is/are acceptable and which is/are not. Consider striking through (like this) any rejected hooks to make it clear that they should not be used.

If there is an image

If there is an image to go with the hook, you will need to do a little extra checking on it.

  • Make sure the image is free of any copyright restrictions. Fair-use images are not permitted for DYK.
  • Check that the image appears in the article.
  • Ensure the image has rollover text (wikicoded the same way that a caption would be).
  • Consider the relevance of the image to the article and to the hook.
  • Consider the quality of the image, and its clarity at 100 by 100 pixels, the size at which DYK images appear on the Main Page.

Finishing the review

After evaluating both the hook and the nominated article, check the nominator has reviewed another DYK nomination under the QPQ agreement (WP:DYKSG#H4). However, people who are nominating an article created or expanded by someone else, or who have made fewer than five DYK nominations, are not required to do another review. If in doubt about the number of prior nominations, look for edits giving DYK credit on the nominator's talk page (possibly using DYKUpdateBot). Note that not all nominations are credited in this way and the bot also credits DYK creations and expansions, not just nominations. If in doubt, ask as part of your review process.

Type your review in the section for that nomination. You should begin your review with one of the five DYK review icons. This allows the nominator and other editors to more quickly understand your review decision, including the severity of any problems. It is also used by the bot to keep the tally of how many hooks have been passed. Be sure to give a thorough explanation of any problems or concerns you have, since several other editors may comment on the nomination before you return.

Symbol Code DYK Ready? Description
Symbol confirmed.svg {{subst:DYKtick}} Yes No problems, ready for DYK
Symbol voting keep.svg {{subst:DYKtickAGF}} Yes Article is ready for DYK, with a foreign-language or offline hook reference accepted in good faith
Symbol question.svg {{subst:DYK?}} Query DYK eligibility requires that an issue be addressed. Notify nominator with {{subst:DYKproblem|Article}}
Symbol possible vote.svg {{subst:DYK?no}} Maybe DYK eligibility requires additional work. Notify nominator with {{subst:DYKproblem|Article}}
Symbol delete vote.svg {{subst:DYKno}} No Article is either completely ineligible, or else requires considerable work before becoming eligible. Notify nominator with {{subst:DYKproblem|Article}}

If the outcome of your review is anything other than an approval (Symbol confirmed.svg or Symbol voting keep.svg), please consider notifying the article nominator(s); you can do this with a personal message on their talk page or by placing {{subst:DYKproblem|Article|header=yes|sig=yes}} there (replacing "Article" by the heading of the nomination). This will automatically create a new talk page section and will automatically append your signature, so there is no need to do either of those.

The icon Symbol redirect vote 4.svg — coded as {{DYK?again}} — may be used by creators and nominators to indicate that a nomination that previously had a problem is ready to be reviewed again after changes were made to resolve the issues identified.

Resources

  • Wikipedia:Did you know/Onepage lists current DYK rules all in one place. It comprises many subpages transcluded onto a single page, so if you need to refer another editor to a specific item, it may be helpful to link to the specific subpage rather than the full listing.
  • Template:DYKrule is a handy template for linking directly to a specific rule. cmadler
  • DYKcheck is a JavaScript tool created and maintained by Shubinator that many editors find helpful in checking an article for DYK eligibility.
  • Duplication Detector is a tool to help check for plagiarism/copyright infringements.

Preparation areas

Shortcut:

The instructions below are guidelines about content to keep in mind when preparing the prep areas. For technical instructions about how to move a hook to the prep area, see T:TDYK#How to promote an accepted hook.

Rules of thumb for preparing updates

N1: Users are encouraged to help out by preparing updates on the preparation area pages. You don't have to be an administrator. Note that promoting your own articles is generally discouraged, and promoting your own articles before they have been independently verified is disallowed. When possible, it is also best to avoid promoting the same article that you reviewed, nominated, or created.

Here are a few rules of thumb to bear in mind when preparing updates:

N2: Choose approved hooks (Symbol confirmed.svg or Pictogram voting keep.svg).

N3: The accepted length of an update is a fixed number that changes every few weeks, usually six, seven or eight hooks. This is not an absolute rule but it is the currently accepted standard length for an update, depending on page balance, so the items selected fit with whatever else is on the Main Page at that time. Check by using the links on T:DYK/P1: "See how this template appears on both today's Main Page and tomorrow's Main Page." to see if the DYK template balances the rest of the main page layout.

N4: Make sure to choose a varied selection – don't choose half a dozen people hooks, for example, or a bunch of hooks about one particular country or topic. Variety is the spice of life. (However, see the following clause for an important qualification).

N5: Because of the preponderance of submissions on US topics and biography hooks, it is usually appropriate to have roughly 50% of hooks in a given update on both US and biography topics. That is to say, in an eight-hook update you should have roughly four hooks per update on US topics, and four on biography. These are not mutually exclusive, for example if you have two US bio hooks that would count as both two US hooks and two bio hooks. Note that "roughly 50%" means just that – this is not an absolute; you can have less of either if there are not many currently available such hooks to choose from on the Suggestions page. Note however that as a general rule you should never have more than 50% of hooks on US, biography or any other topic, except when doing so is unavoidable.

N6: Also, mix your hooks up. Try to avoid having two hooks of the same general type next to one another in the update (for example, two US hooks or two bio hooks together). Putting several US hooks next to one another in an update makes the update look US-centric, the impact is greatly reduced if you interleave the US hooks with hooks about different countries. In the same spirit, try to avoid putting two bio hooks together, or two hooks on any other subject.

N7: Try to avoid putting inappropriate hooks next to one another. For example, don't put a sad hook next to a funny one; it looks incongruous and jerks the reader uncomfortably from one emotion to another.

N8: Hooks on the Suggestions page that include images often get verified first. Users sometimes then just go and grab a bunch of the nearest verified hooks for the preparation areas, which can often include several of these verified picture hooks. Not every submitted picture can be featured in the picture slot of course, but since only one picture can be featured per update, try to leave the good picture hooks behind for another update if you possibly can.

N9: Consider picking at least one funny or quirky hook if there is one available and putting it in the last (bottom) slot of the update. Just as serious news programs end on an upbeat note to bring viewers back next time, ending on an upbeat or quirky note rounds an update off nicely and encourages readers to come back next time for more.

N10: Don't be afraid to ruthlessly trim hooks of extraneous information and clauses. A lot of people who submit hooks tend to overestimate the amount of information that is required, but the end result is a hook that has too much information and is difficult to process. We don't want our readers to work hard, we want to make reading the DYK section as accessible and enjoyable an experience as possible! In general, the shorter and punchier the hook, the more impact it has. As it says on the Suggestions page, the 200 character limit is an outside limit not a recommended length—the ideal length is probably no more than about 150–160 chars. Note however that some hooks cannot be reduced in length without losing essential information, so don't assume that every hook that is 200 characters long requires trimming.

N11: Please disambiguate linked words in the suggestion. Here is the Wikipedia guideline.

N12: Replace the * in each entry with the {{*mp}} that is already provided on the preparation area pages.

N13: Make sure to include the article name, date, nominator, and creator under the "Credits" section to allow others to return it if a dispute arises.

N14: It is the promoter's responsibility to make sure all review issues have been resolved, that the hook is verified by sourcing within the article. The promoter acts as a secondary verification that the nomination was reviewed properly.

Lore

How a DYK suggestion makes its way to the Main Page

A DYK suggestion goes through five steps from nomination through appearing in the Did you know section on the Main Page to removal from the Main Page.

  1. First, an editor posts the suggested text for a DYK entry on the DYK template talk page. Discussions about individual suggestions also appear on the DYK template talk page, such as suggested improvements of the proposed DYK text (the hook), or comments about the eligibility of the article under the requirements (see WP:Did you know/Article).
  2. If the suggested DYK meets the requirements, any editor may add the suggestion to a DYK template preparation area page and then delete the suggestion from the DYK template talk page. In practice, to ensure that all suggestions are given fair consideration, the oldest suggestions listed on the suggestions page are selected first, to ensure that they don't go stale before they are chosen. DYK entries listed on a preparation area are not final, and may be amended, edited, or rejected by any other editor. If they are rejected, they should be returned to the place on the suggestions page where they were originally listed, with their original comments (consultation of the history of the DYK template talk page may be beneficial to restore the original text).
  3. When there are about eight hooks (the prescribed number may change every few weeks) at a preparation area, an administrator moves the page on to one of the protected queue files. The administrator moving the suggestions to the live template may amend, edit, or reject any DYK entries at their discretion.
  4. Every six hours (other frequencies may be specified), WP:DYKADMINBOT moves a page from one of the queue files onto the Main Page. So DYK entries appear on the Main Page for about six hours, with about four updates per day. DYK entries listed on the Main Page are not final. Non-admins may report errors to the Main Page errors page so they can be dealt with. Admins can amend, edit, replace, and remove entries in the DYK template while it appears on the Main Page. Wheel warring prohibits one admin from undoing one another's administrative actions. In particular, wheel warring prohibits one admin from reinserting a DYK hook onto the Main Page that was removed by another admin. In one example, aggressive wheel warring over a Main Page DYK hook led to desysopping by Jimbo Wales.
  5. The bot archives old DYK entries that are removed from the Main Page, and gives credits (notices on nominators' talk pages).

Errors

Notification of DYK errors regarding what is currently on the main page may be posted at Errors in Did you know?. DYK errors on the main page may be addressed by an admin through changes to the DYK template.

Admins
  • If a factual error is reported when the hooks are on the front page, try to replace the hook with another fact from the article, rather than just removing it.
  • In the case it has to be removed, try to replace it with another hook from the suggestions page.
  • If it is the first hook and hence has an associated picture, you must replace it with another hook with a picture.

Debatable rules

These "rules" are sometimes invoked, but a definite consensus is lacking:

  • Does the first word always have to be "that"?
  • Can there be multiple sentences in a hook?
  • Is one source for an article enough?
  • Is IMDb a Wikipedia:Reliable source? Previous discussion here.
  • Occasionally someone objects to linking an unfamiliar word to Wiktionary on the front page, but such objections have always been overruled.
  • Does the word (pictured) count towards the 200 character limit? How about (specific object pictured)?

Overlooked rules

These rules are listed elsewhere, but they are often overlooked at Did You Know:

  • Space after the ellipsis.
  • The link to your article should be in bold type.
  • The first sentence should end with a question mark.
  • For a hook with an accompanying picture, the string (pictured) is all in italics, including the parentheses.
  • WP:DASH.
  • MOS:NUM#Numbers as figures or words.
  • Wikipedia:Manual of Style (titles)
  • "a 'new' article is no more than seven days old. This does not include articles split from older articles", although an article sufficiently expanded from a section of an older article can be a fivefold expansion. The word "fork" is sometimes used to mean Wikipedia:Splitting.
  • The piped redirect guideline WP:R2D, as clarified by Wikipedia talk:Redirect#Link here (which may be archived by the time you read this). This guideline and its applicability to the Main Page are controversial, but if you disagree, please comment at Wikipedia talk:Redirect so those who wrote the guideline can have their say.
  • WP:ADVERTISING

Instruction creep

Did You Know can be criticized for instruction creep. But it is important to distinguish instruction creep from documentation of that instruction creep. Instruction creep is bad because it takes longer and longer to understand all those instructions before you can actually do anything. But documentation of instruction creep eases the process of trying to learn all the unwritten rules before you can do anything. A ten-pound law book is bad, but a thousand-pound library of precedents one needs in order to guess what the unwritten laws are, would be worse. Did You Know nominations are approved by different reviewers, and there isn't an easy way to get them all to behave predictably.

For instance, when determining if a Did You Know article is long enough or expanded enough, we don't count the whole article. "Did You Know defines 'prose' to exclude infoboxes, categories, references, lists, tables, block quotes, headers, images and captions, the "See also" section if any, Table of Contents, edit buttons, "Citation needed" and similar superscripted text, and reference link numbers like [6]." Wouldn't it be easier to just count the whole article, and use the length Wikipedia provides on each page's history page? That would allow shorter articles, so let's say the 1,500 character limit is raised to about 2,500, or to whatever number would eliminate lowering the bar as a reason to count characters the hard way. That simplification hasn't been done, because it has been argued that a short article can be padded to reach the minimum, just by adding categories and such. But prose can also be padded (example), and poetic justice for anyone who disagrees would be to fill his user talk page with 100 different ways to tediously repeat that point. So it's unclear that complicated character counting rules are worth all the extra effort of computing and debating them.

But imagine how much worse that computing and debating effort was before the process was documented. If this simplification is desirable, it will happen when everyone can agree to follow a new, simpler rule, not by ignoring the existing rules so that no one but regulars can know what they are, or requiring weeks of studying the suggestions page to get any idea if a submission would be accepted or not.

These rules aren't intended to cover everything, and we even have a rule than says so: R6.

WP:NOTBUREAUCRACY says "Written rules do not themselves set accepted practice, but rather document already existing community consensus ... "

In conclusion, the only thing worse than a million written rules, is a million unwritten rules.

Daily headings on the suggestions page

T:TDYK has daily headings like "Articles created/expanded on February 18", with nominations as subheadings. We don't have an automated system to maintain the daily headings yet. So as Universal Time midnight approaches, someone should add a heading for the next day, near the top. T:TDYK#Older nominations should be moved down a day, so it will always be seven days old. And if it's below the "Older nominations" header, the last daily heading near the bottom of the page can be removed when it contains no more nominations, except for nominations with unsatisfied objections.

Recognition

The article, article's creator(s), and the DYK nominator may be recognized as contributing to DYK through the credit templates posted by DYK on user talk pages. When an article is first nominated for DYK, the hook may be followed by (i) 'article by XXX; nom by YYY' or (ii) 'self-nom.' These help DYK determine which user talk pages to post credits. For instructions on providing recognition, see DYK credits.

The following templates are used to credit the article creator and the article nominator as well as give notice on the article talk page that the article appeared on the Main Page:

  • Article creator's talk page: ({{UpdatedDYK}}) {{subst:UpdatedDYK|30 October|2014|Article name}} --~~~~
  • Nominator's talk page: ({{UpdatedDYKNom}}) {{subst:UpdatedDYKNom|30 October|2014|Article name}} --~~~~
  • Article talk page: ({{dyktalk}}) {{dyktalk|30 October|2014}} (check if small style templates in use, if so add small=yes parm)

These awards may be given to recognize a user's contributions:

Wikipedians are listed by top number of DYKs, at Wikipedia:List of Wikipedians by number of DYKs. Also, successful submission of a Did you know? piece is one part of Wikipedia's triple crown, an award for outstanding editing contributions within a set time; and Wikipedia's Four Award, a non-timed recognition of article creation and guidance in which the article creator shepherds it all the way to featured article status.

DYK credits, medals, etc. may be recognized on a userpage through the following userboxes:

  1. -- {{User DYK}} -- Userbox, user has authored/created x articles featured on DYK.
  2. -- {{User Did You Know}} -- Userbox, highlights an individual DYK article created by a user.
  3. -- {{User Did You Know2}} -- Userbox, user has been a significant contributor to X articles on DYK; the total number of DYK article's created + DYK article's nominated.
  4. -- {{User Did You Know3}} -- Userbox, user has successfully nominated x articles created by others to be featured on DYK.

History of Did You Know

DYK made its first Main Page appearance on February 22, 2004. The article, pencil sharpener, was developed by Raul654 who had been an editor with Wikipedia for about six months at that time and now is a bureaucrat. An April 2004 screen shot shows DYK located in the space now occupied by In the News. Credit recognition for article creators started on November 24, 2004, DYK began placing DYK notifications on article talk pages on January 13, 2006, and nominators started receiving credit on May 13, 2006.

Other Did You Know pages

These Did You Know rules pages are listed at Category:Wikipedia Did you know rules. Besides those, the DYK process is divided over eighteen pages:

  1. DYK template (Did you know) - T:DYK - the template that appears on the Main Page
  2. DYK template talk (Suggestions) - T:TDYK - where new DYK suggestions are proposed and discussed
  3. DYK preparation area 1 (Preparation area 1) - T:DYK/P1 - where suitable DYK candidates are held pending their addition to the live DYK template
  4. DYK preparation area 2 (Preparation area 2) - T:DYK/P2 - used when preparation area 1 has an in use tag
  5. DYK preparation area clear (blank preparation area) - T:DYK/C - a copy of a DYK preparation area page that lacks DYK candidates, which can be copied over a preparation area page to restore it to a pristine, empty state, ready for new candidates
  6. DYK archive (Archive) - WP:DYKA - where old DYKs are archived
  7. DYK archive navigation template - Template:DYK archive nav
  8. DYK archive header - Template:DYK archive header
  9. DYK navigation box - Template:DYKbox
  10. DYK project talk (Discussion) - WT:DYK - where general discussion takes place
  11. DYK project guide - WP:DYK/G - general guidance
  12. DYK Admins - WP:DYK/A - List of admins with significant interest in DYK
  13. DYK Non-admin participants - WP:DYK/NAP - List of non-admins who are actively involved in one or more aspects of DYK.
  14. Category:Wikipedia Did you know contributors
  15. DYK Hall of Fame - WP:DYK/HoF - Wikipedia's online museum established to recognize and honor individuals for noteworthy contributions to the advancement the Did You Know (DYK) project.
  16. DYK Hall of Fame talk page - WT:DYK/HoF - talk page for the DYK Hall of Fame.
  17. Main Page/Errors in Did you know... - WP:ERRORS - to report DYK errors on the Main Page
  18. Wikipedia:Did you know/Halloween 2008 - Speciality DYK project

Glossary

Shortcut:

5x

See fivefold.

admin

See WP:Administrator.

administrator

See WP:Administrator.

AGF

See Wikipedia:Assume good faith. At Did You Know, AGF means to assume that a referenced fact is actually in the reference, even though you haven't read the reference. This is acceptable if the reference is offline, or if the reference is in a foreign language, or if you have to pay for a subscription before you can read it.

ALT, ALT1, ALT2 etc.

means an alternate hook for the same article. It could be a slight rewording of the same idea, or a completely different hook. ALTs are suggested at the suggestion page after the original hook. Often an ALT is selected instead of the original version.

approval

A nomination needs approval, with a Symbol confirmed.svg or Pictogram voting keep.svg before it can proceed to a preparation area. See WP:Did you know/Approval.

April Fools' Day

is observed at Did You Know. See Wikipedia:April Fool's Main Page/Did You Know, and if you aren't familiar with Western culture see April Fools' Day.

archives

at Did You Know means Wikipedia:Recent additions, where old Did You Know hooks are stored indefinitely after they have been on the Main Page.

article

At Did You Know, "article" means the article being introduced on the Main Page by a hook. For instance, if the hook is "... that Jon Olav Alstad was elected to the Norwegian Parliament at the age of 25?", then it introduces the article Jon Olav Alstad (not Norwegian Parliament, which isn't in bold print). Rules for the article are here.

bare URL

is like http://example.com with the URL visible to Wikipedia's readers.

BLP

See Wikipedia:Biography of living persons

copyvio

See Wikipedia:Copyright violations. If there was no previous article except for a copyvio, then replacing it with a non-copyvio article is considered a new article, and it doesn't have to be expanded fivefold.

characters

A character is a letter, or a space between letters, or a punctuation mark, or anything else made with one keystroke (or one shifted keystroke). The next sentence is an example of how to count characters. This sentence has 32 characters. Count 4 for the four letters in "This", 1 for the space between "This" and "sentence", 8 for the 8 letters in "sentence", 1 for the space after "sentence", 3 for "has", 1 for the next space, 2 for the "3" and the "2" in "32", 1 for the space, 10 for "characters", and 1 for the period. 4 + 1 + 8 + 1 + 3 + 1 + 2 + 1 + 10 + 1 = 32.

There are occasional debates on whether Wikipedia should count article size using "characters" or "bytes". Better terminology for that debate would be whether to use prose or the article's history page, which counts the whole article. For ordinary text, one character occupies one byte, and only one byte, so the character count and the byte count are the same.

credits

at Did You Know means bot-generated messages on nominators' user talk pages, thanking them for contributing after the nominations have made it to the Main Page.

Did You Know

See the Did You Know section of the Main Page for the visible, short explanation. The system that produces that section is also called Did You Know, and the writeup this glossary belongs to explains it in detail.

double-DYK

is a hook that introduces two articles.

DYK

See Did You Know.

DYKADMINBOT

See WP:DYKADMINBOT.

DYKcheck

is a script that checks nominations for errors. See WP:Did you know/DYKcheck and User:Shubinator/DYKcheck.

DYKproblem

is a template used to tell a nominator that he needs to deal with a problem or question on his nomination. See Template:DYKproblem.

DYKsug

has been replaced with NewDYKnom. See {{DYKsug}}.

expansion

at Did You Know means to expand an existing article, that is, to add text and make it longer, hopefully expanding it enough to make it qualify as a new article.

fair use

See Wikipedia:Fair use

fivefold

means five times. For instance, if an article has 1000 bytes of prose (not the whole article, see the "prose" entry), it must be expanded to 5000 bytes of prose (not the whole article) to be considered new, and thus eligible for Did You Know.

5x

See fivefold

good faith

See AGF.

hook

An example of a hook is "... that Jon Olav Alstad was elected to the Norwegian Parliament at the age of 25?" The Did You Know section on the Main Page contains about eight hooks, usually starting with "... that" and ending with "?". They are called "hooks" because they are intended to hook the reader into reading the associated article. Rules for the hook are here.

IGF

In Good Faith. See AGF.

image

is a picture. See Wikipedia:Image

inline citation

See Wikipedia:Inline citation

negative

At Did You Know, "negative" means criticism in a hook, as in the Wikipedia:Biography of Living Persons policy.

NewDYKnom

is a template used to format a nomination. See {{NewDYKnom}}.

NewDYKnomination

See NewDYKnom.

Newly sourced BLPs

means BLPs that were developed from unsourced (typically, that were in CAT:BLP) to thoroughly sourced in the last seven days.

Next Next Update

is a former name for preparation area 2.

Next Update

is a former name for preparation area 1.

nom

See nominate.

nominate

To suggest or propose. At Did You Know, "nominate" means to suggest a hook and its associated article. "Nomination" can mean the hook, the article, or both.

nomination

See nominate.

offline

at Did You Know means a reference that you can't get online, that is, on the Internet, usually because the source is a book or similar library resource.

preparation areas

are Template:Did you know/Preparation area 1, Template:Did you know/Preparation area 2, Template:Did you know/Preparation area 3, and Template:Did you know/Preparation area 4. Approved hooks are moved from T:TDYK to a preparation area and organized into a group of usually about eight. From there, an administrator will eventually move each preparation area page into one of the queues, after which DYKADMINBOT will move it to the Main Page. See "update".

preparation area 2

is used instead of preparation area 1, for instance if preparation area 1 has an {{In use}} tag. See preparation areas.

prose

At Did You Know, only characters of "prose" are counted when measuring the length of an article, whether it's to meet the 1,500 character minimum, or to calculate whether an article has been expanded fivefold. Characters of prose are counted by the User:Shubinator/DYKcheck script, which excludes infoboxes, categories, references, lists, tables, block quotes, headers, images and captions, the "See also" section if any, Table of Contents, edit buttons, "citation needed" and similar superscripted text, and reference link numbers like [6].

Prosesizebytes.js

is a script that measures the characters in the prose portion of the article. See User talk:Dr pda/prosesizebytes.js. DYKcheck is now preferred to prosesizebytes. ====Prosesize.js==== is an older form of [[#Prosesizebytes.js|]]. DYKcheck is now preferred to prosesize.js and to prosesizebytes.js.

queue

is what Americans call a "line", as in "line up and wait your turn". At Did You Know, it means Template:Did you know/Queue, where Did You Know pages wait their six-hour turn to go onto the Main Page. There is room for six pages in the queue.

reliable

means Wikipedia:Reliable sources. The word is often used in a way that sounds as if we are loosely calling people liars, but all it really means is that a source is on the list of what we consider to be reliable enough.

run-on

is described at run-on sentence. It does NOT mean a rambling sentence that runs on and on! If you don't understand the grammatical distinction in the run-on sentence article, then please do not use the term "run-on".

self-nom

is a nomination of a hook and an article you wrote yourself. This is permitted and encouraged.

T:TDYK

is the both the shortcut to Template talk:Did you know (the DYK suggestions page), and a shorthand way of referring to it.

template

See Wikipedia:Template namespace

text

See prose.

twofer

Two articles introduced in the same hook.

update

A single set of approximately eight hooks to be displayed on the Main Page for about six hours. Each update is individually prepared in a preparation area and moved into the queues by an administrator, then onto the Main Page by DYKADMINBOT.

user subpage

See Wikipedia:User subpage. You may write your article on a user subpage, so you will have time to study the Did You Know process before your article is disqualified for being too old. The seven days (and the exception) don't start until you move the article into Wikipedia:main namespace.

verify

See approval.

x

as in 5x or 1.3x, is a way of expressing how nearly an article has reached fivefold expansion. From 2000 bytes of prose to 3000 bytes is a 1.5x expansion. It would have to be expanded to 10,000 bytes of prose (not the whole article, just prose) to be 5x and qualify as new.