Wikipedia:Meetup/Wellington/2016 Edit-a-thon

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Species Edit-a-thon banner.png

What's it about?[edit]

An Edit-a-thon is an all-day attempt to improve Wikipedia's coverage of a particular topic. Led by an experienced Wikipedia editor, participants learn to create and edit pages, correct mistakes, add references, and upload photos. Complete beginners are welcome; training and troubleshooting is provided. This edit-a-thon is being hosted by the Friends of Te Papa, and will focus on adding New Zealand plant and animal species to Wikipedia.

When and where[edit]


A flier for the edit-a-thon you can download and share
  • 10:00: Meet and greet, setup, account creation if needed
  • 10:15–12:00: Intro: how to create and edit species articles on Wikipedia. This will be live-streamed on Periscope (get the app from Periscope site, or watch via @adzebill's twitter feed; Link to Periscope broadcast).
  • Lunch break (Level 4 Espresso cafe is nearby)
  • 12:30–17:00: Wikipedia editing. Our goal is to beginners to create stub articles on New Zealand species, and to improve existing species pages. Experienced Wikipedia editors will be available to help and troubleshoot.

What to bring[edit]

  • Laptop and power cord. Te Papa has free wifi.
  • Any snacks and drink you want.
  • Spare name tag or lanyard if you have one (we'll have extras), with your name and Wikipedia username.
  • Any books, journals, magazine or newspaper articles relevant to pages you're interested in. Te Papa's library has made sure there will be a selection of reference books on NZ flora and fauna available.
  • Photos you've taken that could illustrate species articles; you'll learn how to donate these to the Commons so other Wikipedia articles can use them.

How to sign up[edit]

The Edit-a-thon is free and open to all; we would love you to register and make a commitment to coming, so we can make sure the venue will house everybody. Book at the Friends of Te Papa site; both members and non-members of the Friends are welcome.


  1. If you're coming, try to create a Wikipedia account beforehand: don't wait until the day to do it! Here's a form you can use. Creating an account make editing much easier (here's more info on why you should). You'll need to pick a "handle" for your username; you could use your real name, but it's nice to have the option to be a bit anonymous if you want. See the list of attendees below for the format.
  2. Read up on Wikipedia: there are lots of tutorials, like the Wikipedia Adventure, and useful guides, like the Editing Wikipedia brochure.
  3. Have a think about any species you'd like to work on. Check to see if their pages exist yet, and if they do look for any obvious mistakes or problems. Maybe even do a little research first so you're prepared. You don't have to be an expert; anyone who can do library research and write clearly can contribute to Wikipedia. The best candidates for Wikipedia articles are species that are notable in some way: that is, they're mentioned in print in various places, especially in news stories, textbooks, or magazine articles.

Some notable species that need articles[edit]

Other editing tasks[edit]

  • New Zealand skink articles. Practising or aspiring herpetologists to the bridge! Cyclodina spp. have been merged into the Oligosoma genus, following a 2009 molecular phylogenetics study; articles could do with a spring-clean and some CC images.
  • New Zealand freshwater fish. There are pages for all of the species but most are brief, uninformative stubs.

Useful links[edit]


  • "New Zealand's Wikipedia Edit-a-thon" on RNZ Afternoons 19 May 2016
  • Journalists: use the URL in print; it'll take people to this page. (Note: URLs are case sensitive.)
  • PDF of the flier
  • Shareable web graphic version of the flier
  • There's a public Facebook event you can share


User:Giantflightlessbirds introducing the Edit-a-thon participants to WIkipedia.

Attended remotely[edit]


The meetup was a great success, although the wifi was a little dodgy. We certainly appreciated the reference books from Te Papa, and the more-experienced Wikipedians who showed up to help the newbies. Thank you all! Giantflightlessbirds (talk) 06:04, 2 June 2016 (UTC)

New pages[edit]

User:Pohutukawa63 making his first Wikipedia article, Lophomyrtus obcordata, at the #NZspecies Edit-a-thon, Te Papa, May 29, 2016

Pages improved[edit]