Help:Contribution Policies

From Blaseball Wiki

The wiki is a place where people can come to learn about the official narrative of Blaseball. The wiki is also a repository for the many fan-made narratives (aka “community lore”) of Blaseball, and a space to collaborate while expanding and/or diversifying those narratives. It is here for your interesting people, places, and concepts, and it is here to help facilitate conversations as they develop. To use an imperfect metaphor, we are all friends on a collection of road trips across the Immaterial Plane, with one destination: a Good Story. The routes we will take will vary widely, and there will no doubt be a fair share of trials and tribulations, but with communication and compromise (or, if needed, the occasional rental car) we will get there.

To fulfill the above mission, the wiki team has developed the following policies regarding lore contributions on player pages specifically:

  1. If you are making a major change to a player's page, a summary of it MUST be posted to their Talk page for discussion at least 24 hours before it is put onto the page. We recommend reading our guide on Talk pages if you are unfamiliar. Anything you add to the Talk page must remain there for historical and moderation purposes; do not delete your entries after you have transferred anything to the main page.
    1. A major change is…
      1. A player's first lore
      2. A player's incineration lore narrative
      3. A player's team change narrative, whether due to weather or a Blessing
      4. A major narrative beat
      5. New lore relationships/actions
      6. Changes to previously established writing
      7. Rearranging or removing previously established writing
      8. An alternative take on a player (including the installation of or addition to an IRM)
    2. A Talk page summary consists of…
      1. (For new players & alternative takes) their history, personality, motivations, and other core concepts
      2. (For narrative beats, lore relationships/actions, changes to previously established writing) what the new beat, relationship, action, or change is, and why it works
      3. (For rearranging content) a description of what the updated page will look like, including sections, entries, and examples
      4. (For removing content) a brief description of why the content is unsuited to the wiki, in addition to a description of the final page similar to one for rearranging content
      5. (For incinerations) the high-level idea of the end of the player's story, if it's more than marking the player as incinerated and changing loose present tense statements
      6. (For changes of team) a pitch on the narrative reason for the switch, if it's more than marking the player as on a new team
      7. (For the installation of an IRM) how it will be organized relative to the rest of the page, what it will contain, and any settings that differ from the defaults
  2. The team for which a player currently plays is the steward of that player's community lore.
    1. This is in recognition of the fact that a majority of the lore generation for any given player happens within a team's channel on the official Blaseball Discord server, or in a spin-off team-based server.
    2. This should NOT, however, discourage contributors who are not in these Discord servers or associated with a player's team from suggesting their own lore additions, whether as part of a communal narrative or as an alternative take on a player. So long as an idea is written in good faith and does not pose community safety concerns, it is welcome; all interpretations are valid.
    3. As stewards of a player's lore, the team gets a say in how best to incorporate new contributions with regards to page organization, following the process outlined in point 1.
    4. Additionally, teams currently in stewardship of a player must treat previous material and contributors with the same respect as they would their own material.

These policies apply to all player pages. Again, any conversations you have on the Talk page must remain there for historical and moderation purposes; do not delete your entries after you have transferred anything to the main page.

For changes of team, we generally trust that editors will collaborate with each other and respect all ideas being proposed and finalized. When conflict arises however, we take the following as guiding markers for an effective character transfer:

  • Teams have a period of joint stewardship to work out a transfer narrative, as desired.
    • The length of this period is not fixed, but will be at least a couple of days if things get complicated.
  • When writing a transfer narrative, teams should enter discussions with usable ideas.
    • The originating team should ensure all desired lore is on the player's page, be able to clearly state what core elements they want retained in the player's future narratives, and present any pitches to explain the change in team (if they exist).
    • The receiving team should present pitches for what they want to do with the player and/or how the player comes to be part of their team.
  • These summaries and pitches will be posted to the player's Talk page, even if extended discussion of them happens primarily in a team's channel on the official Blaseball Discord server.

Additionally, we have limited resources for conflict resolution in issues of character stewardship and conflicting ideas. As such, we make the following statements both as first-step advice and as warnings:

  • As this is some editors' first experience of participating in a creative writing community, we support all contributions regardless of quality, and encourage editors to refine ideas rather than discard them outright. Additionally, we have provided a brief primer on how to give productive critique that we expect editors to generally incorporate into their feedback for it to be considered legitimate.
  • The Interdimensional Rumor Mill is a valuable tool for creating space for alternate interpretations.
    • While we recognize that the vague mass of "the attention a single wiki page receives" is limited, it is also by-and-large not a quantity that we are concerned with managing.
    • The IRM is a technical tool we developed to solve a social problems, and as such doesn't strictly speaking solve anything. It does, however, provide wiki moderators with an effective forced compromise solution if no other solution can be found.
  • We encourage contributors to contact the wiki moderation team through mentions on the associated wiki Talk pages to bring attention to material that poses community safety concerns, is malicious in impact, or is reasonably believed to be added in bad faith, as these are reasonable grounds for removing content.
    • Historically the wiki team has asked to be involved in conflicts early on. As wiki team resources have dwindled over the lifespan of Blaseball, we can no longer sustain such involvement. As such, we ask now that we are treated as a last line of conflict resolution rather than first.
    • We are also available through other methods, but vastly prefer wiki Talk pages. The wiki will not burn down if a matter isn't addressed immediately, so Talk pages provide us with the time to give matters the attention they deserve.
  • The wiki is, ultimately, poorly-suited for mass communication of moderation actions or other such matters. As such, it falls onto the editing community to identify bad-faith edits or notice moderation actions being taken.

These policies & practices will be updated as necessary.

Questions & Answers

Technical Questions

  • Is there a way for teams to be notified of new Talk posts on their players?
    • The easiest method is for wiki users on a team to add their players' pages to their watchlist, then communicate any changes to the rest of their community; see our guide on Talk pages for more details.

Application Questions

  • How does the Interdimensional Rumor Mill (IRM) interact with these policies?
    • Different teams use the IRM for different reasons, and have different feelings about the IRM in turn. Thus, the IRM should be treated like a part of the central page. In order to keep things centrally located, major changes even to a single IRM entry should be posted to the main page's Talk page, along with proposals for new IRM entries that might be considered a major change. We currently have not developed any policy surrounding uses of the IRM based on thematic one-liners, but recommend using the Talk page all the same for safety.
  • To be clear, is writing an alternative take still acceptable under these policies?
    • Alternative takes are absolutely still accepted. They are, however, considered a major change (1.a.vii), and so need to be proposed on the Talk page for at least 24 hours prior to posting, whether to the IRM or a designated subsection of the page.
  • When writing a summary, how much detail should be posted to the Talk page? Should a summary be a full block of text, or just concepts that get written out in detail when the main page is ultimately edited?
    • It is impractical to put an entire, fully formatted block of text onto the Talk pages, so we don't expect that. Contributors should instead write out the core concepts with enough detail that people can imagine a block of text. If there ends up being a concern about how the final block of text compares to the Talk page summary, contact a moderator.
  • If a team's Discord community's system already incorporates a 24h feedback period, can that occur simultaneously to the Talk page feedback period?
    • Yes! If a team posts a Talk page summary along with an internal document, this is a great way to streamline feedback processes. We just ask that you keep an eye on the Talk page so that external feedback is incorporated, and not just internal feedback.
  • When proposing a relationship between two players, should the Talk page summary be posted to both players' Talk pages at once?
    • Yes; this ensures that people interested in both players' lore have the opportunity to provide feedback on the subject.
  • Does the Talk page summary & 24h delay apply to changes to the facts of Blaseball, i.e. the things that would go into the Official League Records?
    • At this time there is no need for that delay when it comes to the facts of Blaseball. That said, Official League Records are held to a stricter standard when it comes to writing style. Contributors are free to use our example player page to help format official records, though we will likely ask that recording duties for major events be left to us. On occasion while recording major events we will ask for feedback from the Discord community using the main server's #fan-lore channel.
  • Should minor housecleaning edits go through the Talk page proposal sequence?
    • While open communication on minor things is unlikely to hurt anyone, a Talk page dominated by small housecleaning edits is also a struggle to sift through for major changes. So long as editors think critically about the changes they're making and ensure that their edits are only housecleaning edits, the Talk page proposal sequence can be ignored.
  • If information is present in the unified body text of a page, but not present in the infobox's Rumors and Reports section, does transferring that information into the infobox require a Talk page summary?
    • Generally, no. However, it's important to keep in mind that other users may post to the Talk page to resolve issues they have with a change in formatting.
  • Who is responsible for turning proposals and Talk page summaries into text on the appropriate wiki page(s)?
    • The author who makes the suggestion is responsible for adding their contribution once the feedback period ends.

Meta Questions

  • Why are these policies applied to all major changes, and not just changes to pages that cause issues?
    • If someone has a way of predicting which edits will cause issues, we would love to hear about it! Failing that, however, this policy is designed to both prevent conflicts before they become major issues and provide us with a paper trail to refer to should we need to intervene.
  • Has the wiki team considered being a factual wiki and not a lore repository?
    • Short answer: yes, and we decided against it. While we do want to maintain the factual character profiles of the ILB's players, the fact of the matter is that the people who really care about stats primarily interact with SIBR, not us. Instead, the primary reason people use the wiki is to find summaries of events and read up on player lore. Strictly speaking, we are not an official wiki - the devs are not involved in wiki management. As such, we are equally capable of collecting player lore, and the wiki admins in particular have skills that are exceptionally well-suited to wiki organization. Additionally, the problems we are trying to address with these policy decisions would have to be handled by anyone attempting to create a central resource for player lore. Since we're already positioned & expected to handle these issues, we are accepting the responsibilities and handling them as best we can.