Nightmare on Wiki Street: WikiProject Horror
This week, we took a look at a spooky project that dates back to 2006. WikiProject Horror covers novels, films, and other media that fit in the horror genre. As a result, many of the project's articles also fall into the scope of WikiProject Novels, WikiProject Films, WikiProject Television, WikiProject Video games, WikiProject Media franchises, and WikiProject Biography. Activity at WikiProject Horror has waxed and waned in the past year, although members have continued to produce featured and good content at a steady rate. The project is currently home to 27 featured articles, 3 A-class articles, and 68 good articles. Members are currently working on one featured article nominee (The Texas Chain Saw Massacre) and four good article candidates. The project maintains a portal, a cleanup listing, watchlist, and a task force covering the Saw franchise.
We interviewed four active members for this week's article. Bignole is a fan of slasher films from the 80s and 90s. He can appreciate "more intellectual" films like The Ugly, but he also enjoys "watching stupid teenagers run around and get their heads chopped off." TaerkastUA (The Taerkasten) is also a fan of horror films dating back to "one of the greatest and most controversial horror films of all time, the legendary cult classic, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, whose sheer influence cannot be emphasized strongly enough." Kaguya-chan grew up on "far too much 19th-century horror literature and Castlevania for my own good." Her favorite survival-horror video game is Silent Hill 2, prompting her to ask "is there anything scarier than Pyramid Head?" Andrzejbanas began working on Wikipedia in 2006 and found his calling adding infoboxes and theatrical posters to film articles. He became interested in horror and other pulp genres because "they usually have interesting posters." His favorite horror film is Night of the Demon which "has all the best (and worst) features of pre-60s horror films."
Have you contributed to any of the project's 27 featured articles or 71 good and A-class articles? Are you currently working on bringing any articles up to FA or GA status? Has there been a push to create articles to run in Did you know in time for Halloween?
- Bignole: I am the primary contributor to many horror-related articles. I rewrote the Jason Voorhees, Michael Myers, Friday the 13th franchise, Halloween franchise articles, getting Jason to FA status and the rest to at least GA status. I have also done significant work for the Rob Zombie Halloween articles, along with the Friday the 13th and A Nightmare on Elm Street remake articles. I am in the process, when my real life slows down from time to time, of rewriting the original Friday the 13th articles and bringing up them up the same condition as my other GA and FA articles.
- The Taerkasten: Since May/June 2008, I have been working to bring The Texas Chain Saw Massacre up to FA standard, it went through 3 prior failed FACs and is now at FAC once again, in the hope of becoming one of the best horror articles around. Once that is achieved, I will probably be aiming to bring the rest of the Chainsaw films up to scratch.
- Kaguya-chan: I have contributed to five of the project's good articles. Currently, I'm working on bringing Lament of Innocence and Castlevania: Rondo of Blood up to GA status and Pyramid Head up to A-class status and eventually FA status.
- Andrzejbanas: My first good article was the horror film Eyes Without a Face. Since then I've made a total of four horror related articles into GAs. I've made the suggestion in the project to try and push some horror related articles and I've got the article for Death Bell 2 on there it seems!
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is currently a featured article candidate and three articles (Inseminoid, A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010 film), and Anandabhadram) are good article candidates. Have you been following these FA and GA nominations? Do members of the project help tweak an article that is going through the FA or GA process?
- Bignole: I have been following the Texas Chain Saw Massacre FAC, and have contributed to the discussion on improvements which eventually led to my support of the article for FA status. I am keeping an eye on the Inseminoid article's GAC, while I personally nominated the Nightmare remake article for GA status. Thus, I'm hoping others will eventually take a look at it and tell me what they think needs improvement. That said, it is not uncommon for any editor of a WikiProject to come in and help tweak or restructure articles when they are under review. I think when it comes to the Horror WikiProject, you will typically find the same few editors scrambling about to help an article achieve Wiki-greatness.
- Andrzejbanas: I've been adding these articles to our GA noms page on WP:HORROR. I'm trying to bring more attention to these nominations to our members as I did with the nomination for Saw VI. I think little by little members are getting more into making sure these nominations are up to snuff.
What are some of the difficulties associated with keeping a project active? Do you have any plans to build membership at WikiProject Horror?
- Bignole: The problem with keeping a project active is based primarily on how many members you have that are still editing. Many of the WikiProject Horror members no longer edit on Wikipedia, or simply do not edit for extended periods of time. Horror is a very special field, and one not as many people have a taste for. Thus, something as broad as "Film" is easier to keep active because it covers so many different forms and genres and thus attracts a more diverse field of editors who have an interest in those topics. As much as horror extends beyond simply horror film (e.g., books, games, etc.), the reality is that the primary coverage this project has provided. It's the area that garners the most attention, as I said before, because film is a very popular medium. Just, finding active editors interested specifically in the horror aspect of any medium can sometimes be difficult. At one time the project has had upwards of 200 members, but even quite a few of the ones currently listed as "Active" have not truly been active editing any article for over a year. So, staying active in general is probably one of the biggest difficulties to keeping this project active. Though, like any great horror villain, this project seems to refuse to die and drags itself out of the mud every so often for a few more scares.
- Andrzejbanas: The community needs a bit of a boost to keep it going. Currently I'm trying to make the talk page more active to boost communication and interest in the project. There are a lot of people on wikipedia who do focus mostly on horror related topics but are not on the project.
WikiProject Horror is home to the Saw Task Force and was once home to a newsletter and a collaboration of the month. Do you foresee these elements of the project coming back to life if more members join the project? Were they worthwhile endeavors when the project was more active?
- Bignole: These elements were worthwhile, but it would take a serious amount of life to be enfused into this project to bring them back.
- The Taerkasten: I agree with Bignole, it would take a great amount of effort to revive those, but it would be great for them to be brought back.
Has the project formed ties with any other projects? Are there projects which significantly overlap WikiProject Horror?
- Bignole: I think the WikiProject Films is probably the biggest overlapper for this project. We do have a few members in this project who came over because they were members of WikiProject Films and they had an interest in working on horror films for our project.
- Andrzejbanas: We mostly overlap with WikiProject Films as Bignole mentioned, but I'd like to promote that our last three articles that passed for their Good Article Review were more related to WikiProject Video games.
How can a new member help today?
- Bignole: The best thing any new member can do today is look over any active FA or GA candidacies and support those articles in their growth. Because horror is such a specialized interest, it can often get the cold shoulder when it comes to community reviews as many editors have no interest in reading about horror topics. They do not enjoy the films or the novels, and thus do not have an interest in reviewing such articles. So, they can sometimes sit in the GA nomination pages for months, or have their FAC closed prematuraly because there were not enough editors commenting on the discussion page.
- Andrzejbanas: Agreed with Bignole. I've found pages on other topics that complain that there is not enough information about a certain film "but there's a ton of information about Halloween". More people in the project and more discussion on the talk page would make everything work much better in the project.
Anything else you'd like to add?
- Bignole: PLEASE COME REVIEW THE HORROR ARTICLES UP FOR "GA" AND "FA" STATUS!!!
- Kaguya-chan: Absolutely agree with Bignole. There are simply not enough reviewers at GAN or FAN, so please stop by—read though and understand the criteria first, please—and review an article. You'll make somebody's day just by reviewing, regardless of your decision on the article. Your input is wanted!
- Andrzejbanas: I encourage any interested fan of horror fiction to join this project. We are always looking for new members and are glad to help with anyone who needs assistance on any horror article.
Next week, we'll try to defend against a power play. Until your time in the penalty box expires, entertain yourself with some old reports from the archive.
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