Ilan is an Admin on the Grand Theft Auto wikia (generally known around here as the "GTA" wikia). According to his fellow Admin, LS11sVaultBoy, Ilan "...is so dedicated that you just don't understand." Oh snap! Well, with over 12,000 edits to his name on GTA, Ilan xd is clearly an amazingly prolific contributor. Not only that, he's nice! Newer contributors to the GTA community regularly seek out his help and guidance.
We're so pleased that Ilan is part of the Wikia family, and I'm thrilled to be able to feature my recent conversation with Ilan, below. Enjoy!
Tell us a little bit about yourself...
I'm just some guy from Israel, who enjoys playing video-games, drawing his next 'masterpiece', and editing Wikis. As you can tell from my username, my real name is 'Ilan', another word for 'Tree' in Hebrew, while the 'xd' is... you know, honestly I don't know why I added that. Anyway, at the time of this blog, I'm just a few months from finishing my 12th year at school, my 18th birthday, and joining the IDF.
How did you first discover Wikia?
Can't remember excatly how did I first discover Wikia. I only remember that I created my account during June 2011, before jumping to the GTA Wikia the next month. I do remember that I enjoyed reading about stuff. ALOT. Anything; from games and films to politics and history. So it was only natural for me to hook on Wikipedia, and later, Wikia.
Which wikias do you spend the most time on -- and which is your main wikia?
GTA Wikia - 'nuff said. Needless to say, I'm a big fan of the Grand Theft Auto franchise, so finding out about this Wiki was, how to say this? Awesome! I'm currently an Admin on there, often adding more information to the characters pages, although I also edit on weapons, vehicles, and missions pages when I feel I can do it right. Other major Wikis include the Red Dead Wiki, the Max Payne Wiki, the LA Noire Wiki (basically, almost every Rockstar Games-related Wiki, including the Rockstar Games Wiki). You can also find me on Hebrew-written Wikis.
What do you like about Wikia? What keeps you coming back?
There are two things, two things that make Wikia so great in my eyes. Firstly, this whole concept of 'editing', 'sharing and expending knowledge' on so many, different subjects - that's simply amazing. Secondly - and more importantly - this community thing: So many people to meet, this truly feels like some sort of an extended family; I may laugh with them, helping them, scolding some, and scaring the others, but in the end of the day, I love 'em, all of them! 'Plus, editing articles and meeting new people - it's simply fun!'
How has Wikia inspired you or supported your passion?
Wikia inspired me to write on what I love: video games. Editing on Wikia also helped in improving my English. Seriously, looking at what I wrote two-or-so years ago, and my newer edits... not that my current level of English is perfect (most likely you'll find some errors here and there), but I can see improvement.
What would your top 5 tips for new folks on a wikia be?
I) Stay civil; no need for cursing, insulting or trolling someone who disagrees with you. Respect your fellow Wikian.
II) Before starting your way on a Wiki, read the Wiki's policies. If you have any problem in editing or with another Wikian, just ask.
III) You're not a machine - take some rest from Wikia when you need.
IV) Beware of the 'easy way'; work your way through contributing Wikis and helping other Wikians.
V) Remember to have FUN; most people forget about this, but editing should be for fun - enjoy the quality of your Wiki's articles, and talk to and laugh with the community. 'Why so serious?', I believe the Joker said.
What would you like to see that isn't on Wikia already?
Can't think of anything. I know I want something, but I have no idea what. *slaps myself* Ouch...
What makes the GTA community so unique?
I think the thing that make the GTA community so unique in my eyes, is the fact that it managed to survive every crisis it ever had. I bet some of you know of the 'community split' that occurred on the GTA Wiki. I arrived on this Wiki a while after the split, somewhat of a dead place, with a small, dedicated group of newly-appointed Admins who kept it from crumbling completely; guys like The Tom, Messi1983, Jeff and Bunnyjoke, and now with more awesome Wikians such as Mikey, Dodo8, Vaulty, Thomas and JBanton. The GTA Wiki community will never give up. Never.
Tell us about your interest in the Red Dead community - how did you get involved in that community?
Red Dead Redemption is one of my favorite video games of all time, so I jumped into the Red Dead Wiki shortly after joining the GTA Wiki. My start there was a rough one (a dark spot in my history on the Wiki), but by 2012 I've became a more helpful editor, before becoming an Admin by the end of the year. I like this community for its members' humor, skill and personalities. You'll never find a dull moment there. Currently the Wiki has a little activity within it, but thankfully, a reveal of a new Red Dead game will bring it back on the road.
What would we be surprised to learn about you? Any interesting facts, talents, or interests you can tell us about?
Apart from writing wikis and playing video games, I also like drawing; my drawing style takes features from real-life, video games, anime, fan art, etc. I can be creative when I want to, and maybe with this skill I can enter into the gaming industry (somehow, have plenty of designs, gameplay mechanics and storylines to go with that). Alternatively, I might become a game critic; found a lot of fun in writing about games I like or dislike, and I have three reviews on my belt (a forth one is on the way).