Ballotpedia:Ways you can help
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Users • Editors
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Building Ballotpedia is something you can do to help people in your city, county, school district and state know more about what's on their ballot. It's an exciting project. You can take just one statewide ballot proposition or one school bond election and both become an expert at it and share what you are learning with others in as encyclopedic a way as you can. Ballotpedia is a way to get away from the 30-second-ad mentality so people have a chance to get a fair, balanced, information-rich overview of ballot measures.
What people are saying is an inspiring testimony to the value that many readers have found so far in this type of information. You can be a part of continuing that tradition of building information for people that can otherwise be very difficult and time-consuming for them to discover, or that just comes at them with too much built-in spin.
You might want to start getting involved but not be sure where to start. Most people who start adding information to Ballotpedia do so because it has an article on it about a very well-known or controversial ballot initiative, or an article about a ballot initiative they have some connection to. Some contributors go on to become seriously into the idea of providing the most excellent articles they possibly can for other people, in the belief and hope that this type of building and sharing knowledge makes the world a better place. If you're thinking about getting more into Ballotpedia editing than just on one or two hot-button articles, here are some ways you can start getting involved:
- Choose a stub article and expand on it.
- Look at the list of requested articles, pick one, and start one or more of those requested pages.
- Choose a short page and expand on it.
- Find a portal that interests you and start working on articles in that portal. Each portal should usually have a to-do list or wish-list on it with suggested areas for expansion and improvement within that portal.
- Look at the List of Ballotpedia Projects for a project that interests you.
Wiki-gardening refers to a variety of small-ish tweaks and adjustments to articles that make them easier to read, and that add useful navigational information, such as adding useful category tags.
There's always a lot of wiki-gardening to be done.
Here are some areas that usually need help:
- Check the Ballotpedia:To do list for general maintenance tasks.
- Look at Categories for red-linked categories. See if you can add an article to that category that directs the reader to a useful general article about the articles in the category.
- Look at Categories for two categories that are basically the same, but are typographically different. Eliminate one of the categories by putting all of its articles into the other category.
- Look in Broken re-directs and fix any that are broken.
- Review a set of ballot measures and add additional topic category tags to the article after reviewing this list of ballot measure topics. Most ballot initiatives fall into more than one category, and most of the articles on Ballotpedia about ballot measures could usefully be sorted into additional topic categories, enabling a more thorough history of ballot measures by topic. (Read up on how to add category tags to articles.)