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Marshall's Web Tool Blog

Training and Consulting in New Tools for Effective Web Use

This site is an archive of posts that I hope you will find useful. Please visit my new site at Marshallk.com.

Wiki Manners

Below are some thoughts I wrote up about how to best use a wiki in terms of interpersonal communication. Originally intended as notes to post in the internal wiki of the group I helped last week, I thought they might be of interest as a post here as well.

Keeping Wiki Use Running Smooth

Sign your contributions.

Don’t erase some one else’s contribution.

If you interrupt some one else’s text with an annotation, note or comment – make it clear where your addition starts and ends. Make sure to sign your note.

If you are using a front page table of contents, remember that new comments do not need to be noted in the t.o.c. but new conversations should. (Can be just a text note below the link to the themed page it occurs on.) Taking a minute to leave a record of your contribution will make it more findable, and thus usable, for everyone later.

Files uploaded: this can get confusing if there are lots of different versions on everyone’s computer at home and a different version still on the wiki, so a good way to operate is to say: what’s on the wiki is considered the most current version. If you download it and make changes, upload your version and replace the old one. Don’t rely on the copy on your hard drive, download the newest version from the wiki each time you want to work on or with that file.

Don’t make final decisions on the wiki. Structurally it can work well, but it is inappropriate given peoples’ different levels of comfort using a wiki, frequency checking it, etc. A wiki should be used as support for face to face meetings, not to replace them.

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