Wikipedia:Featured article criteria/another level of detail
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- Ignore all purple boxes! This page should be scrutinized with due care. It describes an important process.
A featured article exemplifies our very best work and features professional standards of writing and presentation. In addition to meeting the requirements for all Wikipedia articles, it has the following attributes:
- It is well written, comprehensive, factually accurate, neutral and stable.
- (a) "Well written" means that the prose is compelling, even brilliant. Whoever reading it must immediately be reminded of their favorite writer. For example, if the person reading it enjoys science fiction, it should be written in the style of Isaac Asimov, Bradbury, or Larry Niven. If the person reading it is a fan of Shakespeare, then it should read like Shakespeare. Yes it may be difficult to be all things to all people, but that is what writing an FA is all about. EVERYBODY should be reminded of their favorite writer regardless.
- (b) "Comprehensive" means that the article does not neglect major facts and details. Your article should have a long and complete definition and explanation of every last detail possible. For example, if you are writing an article about the XYZ motor company, you should include not only the makes and models of each of their cars, but also the colors they come in, demographics of what sorts of people drive them, what kinds of tires go on them, what sorts of things get stuck in the treads of those tires, and good photos of the things that get stuck in the treads of those tires. If you fail to do this, somebody will oppose the nomination on the grounds that your article was not comprehensive enough, followed by ten more oppositions as everyone jumps on the bandwagon.
- (c) "Factually accurate" means that claims are attributable to reliable sources and accurately present the related body of published knowledge. Claims are supported with specific evidence and external citations; this involves the provision of a "References" section in which sources are set out, complemented by inline citations for quotations and for any material that is challenged or likely to be challenged. See the attribution policy for information on when and how extensively references are provided, and citing sources for suggestions on formatting references; for articles with footnotes or endnotes, the cite format is recommended. Feel free to look at other featured articles to see how this is done. You will notice that only the articles with the most citations become featured articles. A properly cited article will have two citations for each sentence. The best articles have citation areas that are actually larger than the article itself.
- (d) "Neutral" means that the article presents views fairly and without bias (see neutral point of view); however, articles need not give minority views equal coverage (see undue weight). The article should be as "whitebread" as possible. Read your article carefully. If you are able to get through it all the way to the end, consider the possibility that it is too interesting to be a featured article. Remember Neutrality is KEY. The article should offend NOBODY.
- (e) "Stable" means that the article is not the subject of ongoing edit wars and that its content does not change significantly from day to day; vandalism reverts and improvements based on reviewers' suggestions do not apply. It is probable that you will attract a wikistalker when nominating an article. Do not panic. This is normal. The stalker, possibly a rouge admin will assist you by filling your article with helpful banners and making lots of helpful edits. Again do not panic. In spite of the fact that this person had nothing to do with the article so far, he is 'trying to help' just like he claims. You may think he's attacking you personally, but he is only concerned for your welfare, the quality of the article, and Wiki quality. Do not be alarmed, this happens to everyone.
- It complies with the standards set out in the manual of style and relevant WikiProjects, including:
- (a) a concise lead section that summarizes the entire topic and prepares the reader for the higher level of detail in the subsequent sections; This should be summed up in less than one sentence, and include everybody's favorite subtopics...in detail.
- (b) a proper system of hierarchical headings; "Proper" means that it should satisfy all parties who are, by now, editwarring your article.
- (c) a substantial but not overwhelming table of contents (see section help). The table of contents should be larger than your article, but smaller than your citations.(see above)
- It should have images if they are appropriate to the subject, with succinct captions and acceptable copyright status. If fair use images are used, they must meet the criteria for fair use images and be labeled accordingly. Expect your images to come under extreme scrutiny. Expect to be labeled as a plagiarist ... or possibly a "plageurist", etc., expect to get reported to the admins. Do not be alarmed, these are just more wikistalkers doing their job. They are here to help.
- It is of appropriate length, staying focused on the main topic without going into unnecessary detail (see summary style). People want to know WHAT YOU are wearing when you write this stuff. The proper length of the article should never be longer than the citation area supporting it.
- THERE IS NO CABAL.
Follow these simple rules, and your article will be featured in no time!