Share Your Knowledge by Adding to the Wiki

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Revision as of 22:03, 18 December 2012 by Sabwoo (talk | contribs) (Editing with Wikitext: added wording)

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By sharing your knowledge, you can help build the Wiki. For help in that process, follow the information below.

Before you begin editing

  • Make sure that you Sign In to your FamilySearch account. If you don't have one already, you will be directed to the Create Account page. There is no cost for FamilySearch accounts.
  • Go to an article that you'd like to edit or add additional information. Choose articles that are of special interest to you or which you have knowledge about.
  • If you want to edit the whole page, click on the Edit This Page button as shown below. Its found at the top right of the page.
Edit this page icon.png

  • You can also edit just one section of an existing article. Click on the Edit Icon as shown below. Its found to the top right of the section header .
Edit icon.png

The Edit Window will now open. There are two ways to edit the page - with the FCK Editor or with Wikitext. The following two section show these two ways.

Editing with the FCK Editor

Editor Toolbar.png

  • If the FCK Editor does not look like the one above, then Click on the Wikitext button in the top left corner. The FCK Editor is similar to those found in most word processing software.
  • Click on the page where you want to edit or add additional information
  • To add text, you just start typing.
  • To delete text, you can use the Backspace key and/or the Delete key
  • To cut text, you Highlight the text and type Ctrl X or Click the cut icon (looks like scissors).
  • To copy text, you Highlight the text and type Ctrl C or Click the copy icon (next to the scissors).
  • To paste text, you type Ctrl V or Click the paste icon (next to the copy icon).

Wiki toolbar.jpg

  • To Bold text, you Highlight the text and Click the Bold icon (the B in red box).
  • To Italicize text, you Highlight the text and Click the Italics icon (the I in red box).
  • To Underline text, you Highlight the text and Click the Underline icon (the U in red box).
Editing with Wikitext

Editor ToolbarWT.png

The Wikitext may seem a little scary at first because it looks unusual. If you are new to editing, just stick with the text functions given below and you will do OK. Remember to avoid the following characters [ { < and ] } >. As you gain more experience, you will learn how to use these additional functions.

  • You can add space by pushing the Enter key.
  • You can insert text by clicking before, in, or after a paragraph and either typing or paste.
  • You can delete text by using the Backspace key or Delete key.
  • You can move text by highlighting it, click on the highlight and hold for a second, then move to the place desired.
  • You can Italicize text by typing two apostrophes in front of the text and two behind. For example ''Italics'' results in Italics.
  • You can Bold text by typing three apostrophes in front of the text and three behind. For example '''BOLD''' results in BOLD.

See Help:Wiki markup for more editing possibilities.


  • If you make a mistake, don't worry. Its not permanent. You can fix it or someone else will. The Family Search Research Wiki is very forgiving of mistakes.

Finishing Up

  • When you are finished, scroll down to the bottom and add a short Edit Summary. Example: Added links to digital newspapers.
  • Then click the Save page button. The page will now offically contain your changes. Everyone who looks at your page, from around the world, will see the changes that you made. Its a good feeling to help others.
  • Remember to Save the page you are working on about every 10 minuets or so. Much longer than this and the system will drop you out. You will loose all the changes that you have made. If that happens, then just begin again from the top and make all those changes for a second time. It will take longer than you thought, but no harm done.

Create a New Article

Before you add a new article to the wiki, search for the subject and then search again for the exact Title of the page you want to create. If an appropriate article exists, don't create a new one. Just add the information to that existing article.

  • For Example: Suppose you want to create a new article called Scotland Clan Tartans.
  • Search on the keywords Scotland Clan Tartans.
  • If there is no such subject or article, the results page will show at the top, Create the page "Scotland Clan Tartans" on this wiki! It shows up as Red because it doesn't yet exist.

The best way to create a new article is to navigate to an exiting article that should have a link to the as yet non-existent article.

  • For example go to the Scotland article where you might want to create a link to Scotland Clan Tartans.
  • Make sure you have logged into the Family Search Wiki.
  • Click on the Edit This Page button at the right top of the page.
  • Click in the Edit Window where you want the link located.
  • Type the following to create a new link - Two opening square brackets, then the name of the non-existent article, followed by two closing square brackets. For example [[Scotland Clan Tartans]]
  • Then add a note to the Edit Summary field at the bottom of the page.
  • Click on the Save Page button. The article will show with a new link Scotland Clan Tartans It shows up as Red because the article doesn't yet exist.

Now to create this new article, click on the Red Link you just made. This will take you to an Editing page which shows You are on a page that has not yet been developed. You will develop this page by creating it.

  • Click in the Edit Window and type in the text for your new article and/or copy the text from somewhere else and paste into the Edit Window.
  • When you are finished, add a note to the Edit Summary at the bottom of the page.
  • Click on the Save Page button.

Congratulations, your new article has been created and there is already a link from another article to it. You will want to make more links to this new article.

NOTE: Save the article fairly often while you are writing it. There isn't an autosave in the wiki. You could loose all of your work though an inadvertent click.

Additional Information

  • For more in-depth information about creating and editing articles on the wiki, visit these articles:

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