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Appropedia:Appropedia is different from Wikipedia

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This is a proposed Appropedia policy. You can edit it, or discuss it on the talk page or at the Appropedia policy discussion page.
For now, this should be considered an essay by one or more Appropedians, and not as a policy or guideline.


Appropedia is a wiki that welcomes original research and practices from around the world. For this reason, we don't call ourselves an encyclopedia. This page describes what we consider as encyclopedic content and how we engage with it on Appropedia.

Encyclopedic content on Appropedia[edit]

What we consider encyclopedic material[edit]

Encyclopedic is defined in the same way as Wikipedia. It refers to information which is notable, nor original; it relies on published secondary sources instead of original research. This is the kind of information which is acceptable at Wikipedia and we support all this content being added to Wikipedia.

Material of this kind, however, can also be developed on Appropedia, as long as it is not duplicating content already existing on Wikipedia.

See Wikipedia:Project:What Wikipedia is not for further explanation.

Encyclopedic material is sometimes suitable for Appropedia[edit]

  • When original research is developed here that may initially not be suitable to Wikipedia due to lack of sources but it improves its encyclopedic quality, thanks to other editors adding sources and making other improvements. In this case the community can opt transwikiing it to Wikipedia.
  • When Wikipedia's information which is relevant to Appropedia's focus is buried within other information and misses its original purpose, then it may be useful to summarize the encyclopedic information as well as linking to the article (especially for literature reviews). If verbatim slabs of text are taken from Wikipedia, the original article must be credited. Use the {{Attrib wikipedia}} template.
  • When it is likely that a person coming to the page may not understand the topic, then a brief description is useful. If a Wikipedia article exists, we encourage linking to the article. See Wikipedia's guidelines for the lead section of an article.

How are Appropedia and Wikipedia diffrent?[edit]

Appropedia complements WikipediaW rather than competing with it. Appropedia has different kinds of information, and can go into much more detail on a topic.

Wikipedia is an encyclopedia (see Wikipedia:Project:Wikipedia is an encyclopedia), whereas Appropedia is a much broader resource, with original content, original research, case studies, project writeups, how-tos and more, as well as networking.

Where there is relevant encyclopedic material on Wikipedia, we can link to it, as described below.

Appropedia complements Wikipedia[edit]

Appropedia complements Wikipedia, rather than competing with it. We're ultimately concerned about our planet and the welfare of humanity, rather than being the "best" at something.

Early on, the Appropedia community decided that the most constructive policy was to consider that Appropedia is a much broader resource that complements Wikipedia as an encyclopedia (see Wikipedia:Project:Wikipedia is an encyclopedia), with material not permitted on Wikipedia, such as:

  • original open-published research,
  • appropriate technology documentation,
  • case studies,
  • project writeups,
  • how-tos, and
  • essays.

Appropedia cooperates with Wikipedia[edit]

The Appropedia community wants Wikipedia to be successful, and to have great resources on the topics that we focus on. Wikipedia es much bigger than Appropedia, has a larger community of editors and a wider variety of viewpoints. Many people will go to Wikipedia to search for information on these topics, and we want them to find good information.

Appropedia cooperates with Wikibooks[edit]

In addition to Wikipedia, Appropedia also cooperates with Wikibooks. Appropedia members can for example improve certain Wikibooks that are useful for projects related to appropriate technology, and extract usable information for Appropedia articles (copying between the wikis requires Attribution, of course).

Appropedia cooperates with Wikiversity[edit]

In addition to Wikipedia, Appropedia also cooperates with Wikiversity. Appropedia members can for example make (worked out) suggestions here regarding the production of new appropriate technology. In addition, course material can be demanded here for use in education-related appropriate technology projects. Appropedia links are also welcomed at Wikiversity, so relevant links to high quality Appropedia pages should be added.

Linking to Wikipedia[edit]

There are two key ways:

  • {{W}} - creates a little superscript W that links to the article named - e.g. "W" creates a link, W, to the Wikipedia article about "Foo". Place this after a relevant word. Use it when the Appropedia article is not created yet, or not satisfactory, or if it's something mentioned in passing that isn't likely to need an Appropedia page.
  • add an "Interwiki links" section and list the links in the form Wikipedia:Pagename.

Don't "hide" the link with a pipe - better to show it in raw form, so the reader can see that it's a link to Wikipedia.

If you specifically want to link to a specific Wikipedia page from Appropedia, rather than just referencing it in passing, then again use a raw link - or, if you use a piped link, make it clear that it's a Wikipedia link.

To link to a page in Wikipedia's project space, e.g. a Wikipedia policy with a full pagename like "Wikipedia:Be bold", use "Wikipedia:Project", e.g. Wikipedia:Project:Be bold.

Appropedia encourages networking[edit]

For Wikipedia, socializing may be a side-benefit, but it's frowned upon if people start networking for reasons not directly related to developing Wikipedia.

Appropedia on the other hand, has networking as a secondary goal (sharing of knowledge being our primary goal). Rather than "developing Appropedia" being the only allowable goal of networking, we encourage any networking that helps us to develop humanity and protect the planet that we rely on, regardless of whether it directly benefits Appropedia.

Please feel free to network and socialize, using user boxes and user searches to connect with people who have have similar interests and passions. See Appropedia:Networking for more details on how to do this.

Appropedia is not a social media platform, nor for aggressive marketing[edit]

While Appropedia is meant to host original content and research, we expect it to be relevant to our mission and vision statements. This means that is not meant for promoting your band, unless it you want to document information about a band promoting sustainability and justice, playing with a carbon neutral footprint or the like. You're encouraged to let people know about your sustainable business, on your user page and where you have reason to think they might be interested, but please don't market aggressively and don't spam. We're here to enable and empower ourselves and each other, so please put time into sharing your information and wisdom, and helping others, as well as promoting your own particular group/company/cause.