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Hello, hello, Wikia Community! Michael here, once again, checking in with another dispatch from the Featured Wikian series. This week I have the pleasure of introducing a real superstar from the Wikia Community: MontagnaMagica!
MontagnaMagica is a roller coaster aficionado and overall Wikia expert. He's doing some fabulous things in his communities, like giving out badges and awards, and he also has some *great* advice for new folks, as well. Read all about it below!
Wikia: Tell us a little bit about yourself...
MontagnaMagica: The first thing people should know about me is that I'm hugely obsessed with roller coasters. I've ridden a total of 61 different roller coasters so far, and my local coaster, "Desert Storm," 104 times. I live in Arizona, USA, and love almost everything about my desert home! I work at T.J. Maxx and study at college, but I still have a good deal of time for fun!
Wikia: How did you first discover Wikia?
MontagnaMagica: I, honestly, cannot remember how I first stumbled upon Wikia. What I can remember, however, was finding "Coasterpedia" back in early 2010. At the time, I was relatively bored, and somehow got the crazy idea in my head to take the little wiki (which had only about three half-finished articles) and make it into something great. My lofty goal was to create a resource for roller coaster enthusiasts that combined the best elements of Roller Coaster DataBase, with its raw statistics, but little else, and all other resources, with their abundant ride histories. Throw into the mix hundreds of on-ride videos, photos, and the ability to update instantaneously, and you've got Roller Coaster Wiki. Over three years later, the wiki is as active as ever, and has well over a thousand articles.
Wikia: Which wikias do you spend the most time on -- and which is your main wikia?
MontagnaMagica: Obviously, there's Roller Coaster Wiki, which I've spent most of this interview gushing over! The two other wikis I've spent the most time on are RollerCoaster Tycoon Wiki and My Little Pony Friendship is Magic Wiki. RollerCoaster Tycoon is obviously related to my primary interest, but My Little Pony just came out of nowhere!
Wikia: What do you like about Wikia?
MontagnaMagica: I think it's great to see collaboration from all corners of the globe. I enjoy working to accomplish goals, and it's very satisfying to see them completed. Wikia is a fantastic place to come together for this because there is always abundant help whenever it is needed.
Wikia: How has Wikia inspired you or supported your passion?
MontagnaMagica: I've made several friends through working on Coasterpedia, and the wiki has somehow solidified roller coasters as my true passion. I just said "somehow", which fails to answer the question... Sorry! At least I'm not graded on this, am I?
Wikia: What would your top 5 tips for new folks on a wikia be?
-Don't take things too seriously
One mistake that a lot of new users make is taking things too seriously. Editing wikis should be fun, and it's definitely not going to ruin you if you make some mistakes. Conversely, striving to reach adminship just for bragging rights is actually pretty immature.
-Do take things at least somewhat seriously
To follow up on my last point, the opposite is also important. When you're editing a resource that others will be looking at to learn about a subject, it ought to be correct. If you're unsure of some fact, you probably shouldn't just tack it into the article on a whim. Go search the internet (or, you know, actual books) and cite your information. This will make the wiki credible and reliable for others to use.
-Look at examples
One of the quickest and easiest ways to become a great editor is to look at example from other successful wikis and articles. You can save the need to ask abundant questions by just having a look at how it's done.
-Respects others' ideas
This is an important one. It may sound cheesy, but a successful wiki needs harmony! There's always going to be disagreement among members, but it's how the disagreements are handled that will determine if the wiki is going to survive. On Coasterpedia, all of the active users will come together to discuss options before making a major change. It's very civil, and we avoid a lot of potential conflict by just discussing.
Never forget that wiki editing should be fun! Take some time to enjoy the company of your fellow coaster enthusiasts, gamers, bronies, cooks, or whomever else has congregated on your wiki. That is a really neat thing!
Wikia: What would you like to see that isn't on Wikia already?
MontagnaMagica: It would be helpful to see automated statistics for users regarding their edits counts. The statistics could be used to show if a user is active at the time, or if they're inactive (signified by a green or red "Active" or "Inactive" button on their user page). It could also be used to show edit rate (edits per day), the average size of a user's edits, or the kinds of edits that the user most-often makes.
Wikia: You seem to be a huge roller coaster fan. How did you get into it, and how are you able to visit so many (more than 11) amusement parks?
MontagnaMagica: My roller coaster enthusiasm began when I was in my early teens, and reluctantly rode Six Flags Magic Mountain's "Revolution". I had ridden smaller coasters before, but Revolution showed me how amazing roller coasters really were. Since the park was near-empty on that Fall day, I went on to ride every other coaster in the park; all 16! I was addicted, and luckily, that was a time in my life when my family could afford to travel much more frequently. I visited several other parks such as Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, Knott's Berry Farm, Elitch Gardens, Lakeside Amusement Park, and Six Flags Over Texas.
Today, I don't travel so much anymore, but when I do plan trips of any kind, I am sure to plan an extra day (at least) to spend at a new park.
Wikia: I see on your Coaterpedia user page that you have a ton of badges. How do those get created, and how are they handed out?
MontagnaMagica: The "Awards" system is an idea that I actually got from RollerCoaster Tycoon Wiki. It was implemented before the Wikia Achievements were created, and we've just continued using them now anyway.
The nice thing about having self-made awards is that they are far more customizable than badges. To award users, we simply edit the template onto their user page. Users who believe they deserve an award can request it from an administrator, and we'll check their credentials. The obvious downside is that we must edit every new user's page to award them, so we can get behind sometimes.
Overall, I like them for the fun coaster references, and they're a part of the wiki's personality now.
Wikia: Thanks, MontagnaMagica! I appreciate your great feedback!
Hey Wikia Community, do you know someone as fabulous as MontagnaMagica who would make a great Featured Wikian? Let me know on the Featured Wikians nominations page ! I am working through the backlog of past nominees (we will feature past nominees) but would love to meet some new folks, too. So, be sure to check in on the nominees page and tell me about your friends who would make great featured Wikians!