WikiFur

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WikiFur
Wiki.png
WikiFur: By furries, for furries, about furries; and WikiFur, the furry encyclopedia
Author(s) Founder: GreenReaper
Curators: (see list)
Contributors: (see statistics)
Website
Status Active
Launch date July 24, 2005
End Date ongoing
Article count 17,500+ in English version (Dec 2013)
Genre Encyclopedia

WikiFur is a website dedicated to the collection and preservation of information about the furry community and culture. It is a wiki, built by contributions from readers: and built on MediaWiki, a free software open source wiki package written in PHP, originally for use on Wikipedia, which anyone can edit the site, and their changes are reflected immediately. Translation/localization efforts exist in Chinese, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Esperanto, Estonian, German, French, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish, with affiliates in Finnish and Swedish.

WikiFur has been at WikiFur.com since 2009.

For more information about how WikiFur works, see WikiFur:About

Mission and content[edit]

WikiFur's stated mission is to "record information of use to the furry community", in an attempt to distribute it to others. This mission has been widely interpreted, and WikiFur contains articles on art, literature and other forms of culture both created by and of interest to members of the furry fandom, as well as the people and characters within it, their history and interests, the worlds they inhabit, news on events of current interest, and much more besides. It can also offer a good introduction to the fandom, although Wikipedia's article is considered by WikiFur's founder to remain the best single page on the topic.

Motives for contributors vary. There are those who simply enjoy collecting and organizing information on anthropomorphic topics. Many are fans of particular topics and wish to help write "the definitive article" on it. Some see WikiFur as a means of "getting the truth out" about contentious subjects like the babyfur community, while others value it as a source of information which, while not completely without bias, is at least subject to an element of peer review and modification.

Audience and impact[edit]

As of March 2012, WikiFur attracted around 7500 visitors and 21,000 pageviews per day in English, and around 1500 visitors and 4000 pageviews in other languages.[1] Around 3000 edits were made per month (~2000 in English), with 50-60 contributors making five or more edits, and four to eight contributors making 100 or more edits.[2][3] Roughly seven articles are created a day, excluding those which are swiftly deleted.[3]

WikiFur has been referenced by others within and without the fandom, including Animal Passions, an article on Anthrocon 2006 published in the Pittsburgh City Paper and pieces in T Magazine, L Magazine and 20 Minuten.[4][5][6] Some fans have mentioned WikiFur as the source of information leading them to attend a furry convention.

WikiFur is linked to by several popular sites, including PeterCat's Furry Infopages, TV Tropes, Inkbunny, Furry News Network, Encyclopædia Dramatica, Rabbit Valley, Lake Area Furry Friends and the websites of Califur and Rocky Mountain Fur Con. The site has an international reputation, with links from Dutchfurs.com, FranceFurs, Furbase.de and Wolves' Paradise, and partner agreements with TurriWiki and WikiLurv.

Organization[edit]

WikiFur consists of a loose federation of wiki communities bound together by common purpose. Each is run as a meritocracy granting greater power — and responsibility — to those who display ability and devote time to the project. Most decisions are dealt with by forming consensus among small groups of interested editors, while larger issues are debated by the entire body. For example, when searching for a new host, WikiFur editors with relevant expertise submitted proposals which were discussed and voted on by most long-term users.

Significant authority rests with the founder, GreenReaper, who owns the WikiFur mark and wikifur.com domain name, handles donations, and manages the hosting provided by Timduru. He acts as the public face of the English project — and, by extension, WikiFur as a whole. However, editorial authority is vested in the entire body of colleagues, and his involvement in non-English projects is normally limited to technical, custodial and advisory matters.

Wiki projects not using the WikiFur marks or wikifur.com, but which share a common theme and principles (most notably, freely licensed textual content and the neutral point of view) are treated as sister sites, and added to the WikiFur interlanguage links and international portal.

Promotional activities and advertising[edit]

WikiFur has engaged in various methods of promotion and advertising, the latter being paid for by site supporters. Promotion usually focusses on two goals: increasing readership, and attracting new editors. Emphasis is often made of WikiFur's size, both in terms of articles and audience, and of the importance of its mission. Methods of promotion have included conbadge-like business cards, flyers, ribbons, and posts and comments on news sites, forum and LiveJournals, along with paid conbook advertising and Google AdWords coverage.

Internet coverage[edit]

Three weeks after its foundation, WikiFur was selected as Something Awful's Awful Link of the Day.[7] Massive vandalism ensued, but the boost in traffic allowed rapid growth.

It was selected by Wikia as Featured Wikicity in December 2005.[8]

In May 2009, Cracked.com editor[9] David Wong included WikiFur as #4 in a list of "5 Terrifying Bastardizations of the WikiPedia Model". Conservapedia was #5, Encyclopedia Dramatica was #3, Pagan Wiki was #2, and Metapedia was #1. The WikiFur section included modified excerpts of the WikiFur articles on Nazi Furs, Yiff, and The Furry Map of Denmark. David went on to call Christian Furs especially weird for their depiction of Jesus as a lion.[10]

Controversy[edit]

Pawstop.png While WikiFur does not require total neutrality, the point of view of this article is disputed.
Please check the talk page discussion before making substantial changes.

As a popular fandom site with avenues of discussion, WikiFur has its share of controversy.

Concern over mission and misuse[edit]

A few people worry that WikiFur provides a source of information for trolls, furry-bashers, and others who partake in pointing out certain aspects of the fandom. WikiFur does contain information that confuse or disgust some people, and it has been linked to by websites that seek to highlight such information to promote stereotypes of the fandom, though so far the effect has not been particularly significant.

There is also concern that WikiFur may be co-opted by such people to push their point of view in the name of neutrality - this was highlighted when an Encyclopedia Dramatica user was found to be editing the same articles on WikiFur and on ED at the same time.[11]

Removal of information[edit]

Roughly half of the articles on WikiFur are articles about people.[12] Contributors are encouraged to make articles about themselves and other members of the furry fandom, as well as about people who create material of interest to furries, including people who not consider themselves members of the fandom. Acknowledgment that some people do not want information about them on WikiFur led to the development of a personal information policy that is under continued review.

One of WikiFur's objectives is to do no harm to past or present members of the fandom. Some contributors and non-contributors feel strongly that people have a "moral right to privacy", and this has compelled removal of factually correct information from articles in some cases. At the same time, there are those who consider it to have a moral duty duty to other members of the fandom to preserve history, especially when they believe there is an unstated reason to remove it. Balancing the two views is not always easy, and has led to heated discussion and criticism of WikiFur from both sides - the former calling it a "stalker's heaven" while the latter accusing it of compromising its mission or "playing favorites" (as there are no absolute rules about what information may be removed).

Several people have proposed a legal right to privacy, but so far have failed to come up with any relevant laws when challenged to do so. The use of legal threats has not helped the case of those requesting a removal.

Exclusion of a person from WikiFur (as authorized by the consensus of the community) is typically implemented through locking the page about them with a short message. Articles about people usually removed on request, although some instead watch the page. At one time there was an option to turn an article about a person into a personally-controllable page.

Notable people, including some "famous" artists, entertainers and members of the fandom who have caused controversy are opened to debate, and in some cases certain information is moved to relevant pages before exclusion is applied. Extremely notable people are unlikely to receive full exclusion of the page about them, though some particularly decidedly personal information may be removed.

A person's real name and location is usually allowed to be removed without question, although there are cases in which even this has not been granted even after debate (the prime example of this is Sibe). Removal of a person's name from an article that is not specifically about them is generally only permitted if their identity is not important. For example, in 2005 the name of a person who bought a painting for $10,000 at auction was not considered important since the issue was the price of the painting.

Articles about comics and other public works are not subject for removal even if the author requests it, as they are not "personal information". Some creators have contended that their work is "not furry", (such as the 2006 discussion at Talk:Guardian Knights) but as the work is described on WikiFur because it is of interest to furry fans, this is not been taken as sufficient for removal of information about a work.

Bias[edit]

There is an ever-present danger of bias on WikiFur. The most notable bias is due to the fact that most editors (and all of the most dedicated members) are members of the furry fandom, and the majority are likely to have a positive opinion of it. This can lead to accusations that articles are biased towards the furry fandom's position - and sometimes these accusations are accurate.

Arguments about content, such as the addition of biased information whether overly positive or overly negative, are typically solved by removal of unsourced information, the provision of references, or (in the case of opinion) specific attribution of statements. The relative proportion of content that is present in an article may itself put the topic in a false light. The usual answer to this is to suggest that the person complaining about it fix it by adding other relevant information.

WikiFur has been criticized for allowing unsubstantiated rumors to be presented as facts, as the acceptable standard for inclusion on WikiFur is whether a contributing editor believes it to be true, not whether it is actually true. Despite this, WikiFur is perceived by some to be a more reliable source than others on contentious topics that it covers[13], and it has been praised for its attempts to provide useful information while avoiding bias.[14][15]

WikiFur has also been accused of being used for revenge purposes,[16] due to it allegedly containing more articles on critics than actual anthropomorphic characters.

Vandalism[edit]

Like many furry forums and sites which allow comments, WikiFur has its share of vandals. However, since it is a simple matter to return to a previous state, most vandalism is reverted within minutes. The members of 4chan's /b/ board took particular interest in the site, and regularly organized raids until August 2006.[citation needed]

Despite multiple attempts, no vandalism since Something Awful from any source has succeeded in disrupting WikiFur for more than a few hours[citation needed] - the worst case was a sophisticated account-registering bot that used the Tor proxy system, which has since been blocked.

Timeline[edit]

Main article: History of WikiFur

WikiFur was conceived in July 2005 by British software developer Laurence "GreenReaper" Parry while creating an article for The Blind Pig on the English-language Wikipedia. Founded July 24, 2005 on the Wikicities (later Wikia) wiki hosting service, WikiFur was initially promoted on Wikipedia's furry fandom article talk page, followed by posts on LiveJournal and alt.fan.furry. By August 28, the wiki held over 1000 articles; the count reached 10,000 in 2008.

WikiFur also made inroads into non-English content, beginning in 2006 with an affiliation with the autonomously-administered Finnish-language Turriwiki; this was furthered with the launch of three Wikia-based language-specific WikiFur projects in 2007. New languages were launched on the wikifur.com domain from mid-2008, hosted on a server provided by Timduru, and the other languages joined them over Summer 2009.[17][18][19]

Interesting facts[edit]

Recommendation within furry fandom[edit]

WikiFur has been in the Recommended Anthropomorphics List published by the Ursa Major Awards every year since 2006 (listed under "Recommended Anthropomorphic Miscellany"). It was nominated for Best Website in the 2011 Awards,[20] coming second to Equestria Daily.

"Somewhere else in this thread somebody posted a link to the furry wiki. As of so far, this is the only even handed thing I have seen posted here regarding Starfinder as it reports the allegations, doesn't claim them as truth and provides information on what to do. How hard is that?"[13] -- Darkwolven comparing WikiFur to artists_beware

"WikiFur was definitely useful, I would have spent months gathering information without it. Feh on that! I was also glad to see that it seemed to maintain a rather evenhanded point of view overall; considering how factionalized FF can be that can be difficult. One man's fair is another man's controversy..."[15] -- Chris F. Grant

Quotes about WikiFur[edit]

  • WikiFur? Furry has to take everything and make a down-syndrome version of it. -- Chuckles on HLM
  • Furries have the worst case of Manifest Destiny ever. -- Spiral Cut Mink
  • Someone recently told me about the WikiFur Central project. It's a wikicity on furryism, basically. It's pretty crappy and a perversion of what Wikipedia is supposed to be about, but that's not really my point. -- J of God Hates Furries
  • Thank you very much, Wiki moderators. As to my drinking, this is indefensible, and you have my abject apologies. I find of late that I have very little choice in the matter of expressing emotions. When I browse WikiFur I can either drink, or I can weep. And drinking is so much more subtle. -- McGroarty in a shout on HLM MUCK
  • Special:Allpages has its pages ranked into sections for listing. They should make the results a slogan. "Wikifur: From 2 to Zoophilia." Eh? EH? :) -- Crassus
  • I first cringed at the thought of a furry wikipedia roaming on the net. I figured it to be a rather one-sided "don't talk about the bad, only use it as a propaganda site to make furries look good" website. What I found it to be instead was a rather well done unbiased encyclopedia on the fandom.[14] -- nothingkat
  • Please do not take offence, but this site featured article scares me. It is a person dressed in an animal costume sitting on a couch. -- Makon, on the WikiFur nomination for Featured Wikicity
  • I had no idea that furry culture was this big! Wow, this is really a nice community. :3 -- The LP
  • Wikifur is definitely one of the fix-stars on the furry sky ;) -- Toumal
  • It's a field crowded with high-quality entries, but WikiFur's emergence and growth after a smear campaign makes it uniquely qualified to receive attention, methinks.[8] -- Tom Howling voting for WikiFur as a Featured Wikicity
  • For the furry, by the furry, about furry ? It is the best motto that I have ever heard. :) -- Alphawolf Kiba

Related terms[edit]

  • The term 'Wikifur' (sometimes inter-capped as WikiFur, also Wikifurry/WikiFurry) is also used to describe a frequent contributor of WikiFur, much like 'Wikipedian' is used to describe a frequent contributor of Wikipedia
  • A WikiFur page about a person is sometimes (incorrectly) referred to as "a wiki" or "my wiki", in the same way that people refer to "my LiveJournal" or "my MySpace"; this usage is not endorsed by regular editors

References[edit]

  1. Google Analytics figures
  2. English WikiFur statistics
  3. 3.0 3.1 WikiFur global statistics
  4. The Digital Ramble | Obsession - Rosecrans Baldwin, 15 May 2008)
  5. An Interview With a Furry - Audrey Ference, L Magazine (15 March 2012)
  6. Ces adultes qui enfilent un costume d'animal - 20 Minuten (10 August 2011)
  7. Awful Link of the Day. Something Awful (2005-08-15).
  8. 8.0 8.1 Wikia features WikiFur as Featured Wikicity, December 2006
  9. David Wong's cracked.com member page. Retrieved 2009 June 12.
  10. 5 Terrifying Bastardizations of the WikiPedia Model - David Wong, Cracked.com (11 May 2009)
  11. Accusation of dubious editing practices by GreenReaper against SleepAtWork
  12. August 18, 2011 calculation of 51%: 7138 articles in Category:People, 1900 articles as at Special:Statistics.
  13. 13.0 13.1 Comment about WikiFur in regards to Starfinder by Darkwolven in artists_beware, 9 August 2006
  14. 14.0 14.1 Praise for WikiFur's attempts at avoiding bias by nothingkat
  15. 15.0 15.1 Comment on the use of WikiFur by Chris F. Grant
  16. Rant: WikiFur by Kellie Gator on the Fur Affinity Forums
  17. WikiFur:Moving hosts
  18. WikiFur moves languages to new server
  19. English WikiFur moved to en.wikifur.com
  20. 2011 Ursa Major Awards voting now open - Fred Patten, Flayrah (16 March 2012)

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

Statistics[edit]


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WikiFur
Wiki.png
See also
History - Flayrah (in English; formerly WikiFur News)