The 'Shroom:Issue XXXII/Director's Notes
Hello readers, I am your NOTHING WEIRD director Tucayo!! And welcome to the Director Notes, and let me tell you, these are probably the most important notes I have written, keep reading and find out why.
I have some very important things to tell you.
First, Nerdy Guy agreed to make a special section for this issue, I hope you like it.
Next, as you probably know, the Pipe Plaza proposal passed, this means, starting next issue, IF EVERYTHING GOES FINE, you will see the Pipe Plaza as a team, directed by our beloved teammate SMB! And now the most important thing, due to discussions going on between certain sysops and the core Shroom staff, we came upon some agreements that will change The ‘Shroom as we know it, first, we had Cobold’s idea which was the following. (Yoshario greatly supported this)
So we have The 'Shroom, apparently the official newspaper of the Mario Wiki aimed at our members, but still available on the navigation bar and posted on the front page, so it's definitely also targeted to the non-member public and can give outsiders an image of the MarioWiki.
And what kind of image? One of total garbage. I don't even know where to begin.
THE CURRENT STATE OF THINGS - Part of the 'Shroom is a collection of content that you'll most likely find on the Userpedia, and with good reason. Fake News isn't funny or original. It's a chaotic mess, not to mention it's fake. Comics that regularly appear aren't funny either except for those into the Userpedia scene. Fun Stuff contributes nothing of any value. Art & Music just has a random boxart, a random artwork and a random screenshot listed. None of these have anything to do with the wiki. The same is true for most other sections, too, like "Entertainment Section".
- Some of the articles are ridiculous excuses for writing. Check out the full section for "Upcoming Games" in the current 'Shroom: Quote ===Upcoming Games===== By DarkYoshi 1.New Super Mario Bros Wii 2.That's all for now I guess this was my first issue guys No formatting, no content, no anything. Obviously, the fact that this page still is up shows that there is no form of quality control with the current system, partly to blame is the fact that one director is busy with college, but still, this shouldn't exist.
- Still with all that, the Shroom manages to have pages about nothing. The so-called "Calendar of Events" does nothing more than list all upcoming games, upcoming FAs and upcoming user birthdays. The upcoming games list should be in the section "Upcoming Games", but that as seen above failed to do anything. The rest can either be read up on the wiki already for those interested, or has nothing to do with the Wiki like user birthdays. The Top 10 section is nothing more than a user opinion.
- Editors have little ideas how to properly spell, use grammar, format their articles correctly or actually fill them with content. The "Monthly Mulligan" review consists of nothing but a one-liner and a score. On its sign-up page, the Shroom requires its writers to have "perfect grammar, spelling and punctuation." Especially the Fake News writers don't seem to have any of that. Not to mention the rule for "All sections must be good in length and quality. " People create huge walls of text with no line breaks which are unreadable, not to mention the entire format and background of the Shroom look ugly.
WHAT WE SHOULD CHANGE We should get rid of anything that has nothing to do with our encyclopedia. That involves - Fan Fiction: Any sort of comic or fake news. Not only is it entirely pointless and off-topic, it also has no entertaining value, and considering that it's even advertised as being fake, it has no place in something that is considered our official newsletter. - Unfunded Opinions: There's nothing against stating your opinion with proper reasons, while pointing out that others may think different. What happens in the 'Shroom is that writers just list what they like, as if it was the truth. Not only does this have nothing to do with journalism of any sort, it's also basically an external user page telling the reader nothing other than about the writer himself.
Also we should - Strip down on the sections: We have to many, and they're hard to tell apart. "Monthly Mulligan" is just another "Review" page. - Make our page cleaner. People don't know what "From the Mushroom Vaults" means. We can do better than just listing the name of the column, and actually give each article its topic on the front page. Like the Wikipedia Signpost, Wikipedia's newspaper, does. - Fix the layout: It's not appealing to the eye. The background is hindering. The font and formatting of headlines is unpleasant. The arrangement of text paragraphs barely exists, pictures are scattered all over the place. - Set standards for spelling and grammar. - Set a length minimum. Some sections are way too short.
MY GOALS ARE: -To make the 'Shroom actually relevant. The 'Shroom has been of very poor quality for ages. But nobody cared, because nobody except the people who wrote it actually read it. -To make the 'Shroom actually live up to its status as an official newspaper and start covering the wiki, and the wiki only.
-To make it stop reflecting bad on us.
I will like to state 2 things, 1, that that section turned out to be spam, and 2, that I disagree 100% with this, but due to the insistence and that I was outnumbered, we will start with this stuff in December.
Next, we have Stoob’s ideas which are good, I agree with almost everything except the last sentence.
Let's face it. The 'Shroom has reached an all-time low in quality that I never even fathomed possible. The paper's quality is poor, our sections are far too short, our "funny" sections are anything but, and we've done NOTHING to stop this. (I include myself in the blame.) Here's what I propose we do:
- Cut down the limit to two sections per user. This will improve the quality of each section because our writers won't be so stretched thin. - Outright fire the users that have horrid grammar, create lousy sections, etc. - Divide The 'Shroom into two main sections: Wiki News and Entertainment. Wiki News would be a priority, and Entertainment would be trimmed down by quite a lot. - Set our standards much higher: -- Accept sections that only have proper grammar (a typo or two is acceptable, as these can easily be fixed). -- Make it so that a section must contain at least 700 characters of readable text. (Not coding or any of that; the actual text that you read). -- Make it so that sections must have a proper format. (Not exactly sure what the "format" would be, but it would outlaw random nonsense and the like, make it so that each section had to be aesthetically designed, etc.) - Create competent teams of people that will overview each section so that anything of low quality will be turned down; this team would also provide proofreading, so that sections are actually professional-looking. - Allow a person to miss a deadline once without getting fired. If they manage to turn their section in within the next week, the offense will be discounted. - Rearrange The 'Shroom main page, sign-up page, etc. (Again, not sure of the format we would use here, but it would be better than what we have up now.) - Provide certain 'medals' or 'icons' to those who send in good quality sections on-time. (Like, if X were to send in 3 good-quality sections in a row, he could have a little icon next to his name in the sign-up page.) - Get rid of the sign-up sub-pages (i.e Fake News/sign-up, Fun Stuff/sign-up, etc.) and compile them into one neatly-organized sign-up page. - Make it so that Wiki News sections are our TOP priority. In other words, if someone randomly joins and decides to create some Entertainment section, it would be turned down, unless it were an original idea and would intrigue readers' interest in The 'Shroom. - Any core staff members that do not uphold their part of the team will be fired. This should technically include the director too. (That's not directed at any of our current core staff members, but would be a necessary measure to implement.)
Well, Stoob has better ideas, which we will start enforcing NOW, well, most of them.
Well as Stoob said, we need an Editor, so starting today; there will be a thread in The Shroom child board where you can say if you are interested in the Editor in Chief job. In order to apply you need to have the most perfect grammar possible.link
A 3rd idea was given by Ralph, which we will start enforcing also now: Any user willing to sign up mist contact me (Tucayo) or Stoob so we have kind of an interview to decide if you are fit for the job, this means, people can’t sign up without authorization. THIS WORKS FOR ALL SECTIONS, INCLUDING SUB-SECTIONS.
I also have a message to all writers: IF YOU ARE CONSTANTLY LATE, YOUR SECTIONS ARE SHORT OR HAVE BAD QUALITY OR IF YOU HAVE BAD GRAMMAR YOU WILL BE FIRED, SO GET READY.
I know all these measures will cause many comments, so if you have any comment, complain, or if you simply hate this new system, please drop a line at the talk page. We also have some polls to see how you feel on the subject, and another about a new section proposed by P.Trainer.
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Thanks for reading us! I hope you still do so next month, because we will have many surprises (weee). And as you know, there is also a Director Election next month!!! Now I leave you with Stoob, BYE! And remember, I utterly oppose the Wiki News thing. Because I think they are simply incompatible. See ya.
'Ello, all. It's been a while since I've written anything in the Director's Notes, but I plan for that to change. Tucayo put just about everything I had to say quite nicely — and even put my thoughts on how to change The 'Shroom up there — so I don't really have too much more to say. What I will say, though, is that I plan to be a much better sub-director than I have been. I plan to start writing a new section within the next few months that could bring a more creative perspective to the paper, and I plan to help out a lot more. In closing, I'd like to thank all of the core 'Shroom staff for all their efforts this past week. Kudos to y'all. Peace out.
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