Help:Guidelines for Editors

Jump to navigation Jump to search

Becoming an Editor

To be a GAMEO editor, you need to be a registered user with a Login Name and a Password. These are initiated by GAMEO Managing Editor Richard Thiessen, Librarian at Columbia Bible College in Abbotsford, British Columbia, or Associate Managing Editor Sam Steiner, former Librarian & Archivist at Conrad Grebel University College, Waterloo, Ontario.

If you have been invited to serve as an editor, one of the managing editors will send you an email with your Login Name (which will be a combination of your first and last name) and a temporary password. After you log in for the first time, you should change your password to one of your choice. It should be at least ten characters long. We recommend that it be a combination of letters and numbers, and possibly even including a special character like a #, % or some such.

User Information and Preferences

User Page

When you login you will see your name on the righthand side near the top. Clicking on this link will bring you to your personal User Page. Here you can provide information about yourself, and upload a photo if you wish.

Talk Page

Immediately to the right of your name is a link to a "Talk" page. If you create this page, it is a place to communicate with other editors about things related to GAMEO, (or not, if you wish.)


You should spend some time in the Preferences link.

User Profile - Here you see your user name and id number, as well as statistics about what you've done. Provide a Real Name and sure your email address is correct. Change your password if you've only had a temporary one.

Appearance - Accept the defaults, except to change image size limit to 1024x768px and thumbnail size to 300px.

Date and Time - This is up to your preference.

Editing - Accept the defaults until you are familiar enough with using MediaWiki to make changes. Please do not use external editors.

Recent Changes - This your preference, but you should probably start with default settings.

Watchlist, Search, Misc and Semantic MediaWiki - Start with the defaults; change when you have a reason to do so.

Available Help Pages

Help Pages That Are Available Include:

Guidelines for Editors – Guidelines for basic creation and editing of GAMEO articles. (This Help Page.)

Guidelines for Reviewers – Guidelines for reviewers to "publish" or "reject" articles, to add images, maps or other multi-media to articles.

GAMEO Style Sheet – This tells you how we do things, e.g. spell out numbers under 10, then use numerals; style to use in bibliographic entries, etc. Although it’s boring reading, you need to be familiar with this, or a Reviewer may send an article back to you for correction.

Common Abbreviations – These are bibliographical sources frequently used in articles in the print Encyclopedia, as well as newer forms. You can use this information to “cut and paste” into your bibliography on occasion.

Article Guides

There are a variety of article guides to consult when you’re writing a new article or extensively revising a current article.

Biographies (General)

Biographies (Brief Genealogical)



Geographical Entities



Writing a New Article

Input text

To write a new article:

In the search field at top right fill in a “Title” in the approved form of entry, e.g. Darmstadt (Hesse, Germany); Derksen, John (1929-2010); Abbotsford (British Columbia, Canada), etc. The search should reveal there is no article by that name. It will offer for you to "Create the page "Your Title" on this wiki. When you click on this it will up a page creating the title you typed. Select a template for the type of article (generic/church/person/place) and load the template. This loads the appropriate structure for your article.

In the blank text field then either type in the new content or paste it from your Word, or other word processing program. The toolbar above this form shows various editing features you can use, not unlike your word processor. A few may not be obvious – the “chain link” is for links to other GAMEO articles (you’ll use this a lot) or to external links (most often used in "Additional Information" to a church's website, etc. The “table” is to create tables. If you do need to create a table, use the defaults. The "picture" to the right of the chain link is for inserting embedded files (primarily illustrations). Remember the defaults for illustrations. Do not use the "Picture Gallery" found under the "Advanced" drop down


You probably have a number of proper names, institutional names or geographic locations in your article. We encourage you to create links to other GAMEO articles as much as possible.

To do this, highlight the name or term you want to create a link from, e.g. “Frank Epp” and click on the “chain link”. This brings up a search box. Fill in the term, and MediaWiki will try to find the article. Important: proper names of individuals should be searched in last name, first name order (e.g. Epp, Frank); institutions, churches, and most other links should be searched in direct order (e.g. Abbotsford, British Columbia....

If you don't get link you think should be there, open the encyclopedia in another tab and search for the name. It could be a spelling issue, something to do with diacritics, etc.


If you wish to insert an illustration into the text, first check if an appropriate image is already in GAMEO. If so open the "Embedded File" link (not the Picture Gallery!) and fill in the file name and appropriate caption.

If the photo needs to be added from your computer, open "Upload file" (from the left menu) in another browser tab or window. Make sure the photo you are uploading is no more than 1200px on the long side. Choose the file from your computer, give it a relevant destination filename, e.g. Epp, Frank, 1983 (for a picture from 1983). In the summary provide a brief description, and the donor of the photograph.


For the present, if you want a map attached to your article, contact one of the Managing Editors with detailed information.


The Bibliography section should follow the correct style; see the GAMEO Style Sheet. If there is no bibliography, remove the Bibliography heading.

If there is a reference to an online historical source, you may create an external link to that site. Highlight the term, and click on the link chain. Fill in the web address for the website and save.

Additional Information

The Additional Information section includes information and links to the website of the church or institution the article is about. For a congregation or institution you may provide “Directory Information” in this section (Address, phone, conference/professional affiliations, etc.). Use the form:

Address: 32 Weber Street West, Kitchener, Ontario N2H 3Z2 Phone: 519-578-4900 Website: Rockway Mennonite Church Denominational Affiliations: Mennonite Church Eastern Canada Mennonite Church Canada

We do not put email addresses in the directory fields. If you have tables for listing pastors, membership, board chairs or whatever, they also go into “Additional Information”

Other things you may wish to place in this area are:

A link to Worldcat for articles about books, hymnbooks or periodicals to provide information on where a book might be located. See Agape (Periodical) for an example. Instructions on making links to Worldcat can be found at: If there are multiple editions of the work, you may want to use a title search. For an example see Alt-Evangelische Mennonitische Brüderschaft in Russland (1789-1910). Use the OCLC, ISSN or ISBN search if only one edition of an item has appeared.

A link to an online copy of a work that is not part of the bibliography. This is similar to an external link to an organization relevant to the article. See Offer des Heeren for an example.

GAMEO Footer

The footer is is where you fill in the Month and Year of the article (e.g. July 2013) (without parentheses) and the last name and first name of the author of the article. A second author can be entered if necessary. If you use an initial as part of the first name (e.g. John C, do put a period after the initial.


Click “Save” to finish your work. Check over what you’ve done. If you need to make corrections, click edit and make your revisions.

Editing Existing Articles

If you want to edit an existing article, you can search for the article (when you are logged on). You can click edit and make the necessary changes. Before it is "approved" by a reviewer or managing editor, it will be a "pending" state, though it is still visible to visitors of the site.

Major revisions of an existing article should be discussed with a managing editor before commencing work. Minor edits/corrections can be done at any time. Do not change author information on an article without discussion with a managing editor.