Wikipedia:Just write a damn encyclopedia
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All too often, I see the attempts and successes of article-writing being trampled by the miles of red tape that our administrators and elitist users set up for others. If they say Wikipedia isn't an experiment in democracy, why do they seem more interested in writing bylaws than articles? Why do they constantly delete first, ask questions later? Why do we, the common editor, let these elitists throw their supposed "power" around? Why don't we all just get together, <font:red>take back Wikipedia, and just write a damn encyclopedia, already?
I'm Kookykman. An editor who resigned to editing as an IP to avoid the red tape. Now I'm back, and I'm done running away. It's time to take a stand.
... as long as you do it well!
It's interesting that the author of this essay uses "elitist" as a slur, as if there was something wrong with it. The fact of the matter is that not only do we not eschew "elitism" in our daily lives, we positively demand it. If your automobile is broken down, if you're visiting the doctor's office, if you're taking your family out to a pricey restaurant, you would not be pleased at the suggestion that you ought to settle for mediocrity; you want that mechanic, that physician, that cook to be proficient at the task, and they had better give you your money's worth. From the schools that educate our children, to the sports teams for which we root, to the officials we elect to govern our communities, we demand no less than their elitist best, and we are very unhappy when we don't get it.
We're not out to write a mediocre encyclopedia here. This is a resource the whole world employs, and it is not merely our duty, but our privilege to get it right. That mechanic, that doctor, those sports players, those teachers all have rules they must obey, procedures they must follow, ways of doing things they shouldn't contravene.
And so do we. We should all be "elitists" on Wikipedia, and we should be proud to use the name.
- Beware of instruction creep
- Practical process – procedures are good, to a point.
- WP:IAR – Fundamental basis of this essay.
- WP:ENC – the "red tape" will only get in your way if you disregard this. An encyclopedia is inherently "elitist": Wikipedia welcomes mediocrity, with the understanding that it is provisional, but will discard it anytime in favour of quality.