Doom Wiki:Departure from Wikia

From DoomWiki.org

Background[edit]

Difficulties with the Wikia skin caused many problems; not the least was being forced to redesign the logo.

The Doom Wiki began in January 2005 as part of Wikia, Inc. (then called Wikicities). Although Wikia is a for-profit company, its staff seemed friendly, industrious, and hobbyist-oriented. [1] [2] Over the years, however, an increasing focus on advertising and social networking made the site difficult to use as a knowledge base. Disjointed article layouts, garish color schemes, and ungainly "wysiwyg" editing interfaces would be proposed, then suddenly become mandatory. Reaction to these changes was typically brushed off or answered with PR boilerplate. [3] [4] [5]

Multitudes of Wikia contributors grew frustrated and annoyed. [6] While copyleft licensing prevented wikis from simply moving to another host without Wikia's permission, many projects forked their content (including the very large World of Warcraft, Grand Theft Auto, and Transformers groups). Discontent eventually arose in the Doom community; a decision to move was gradually reached in October and November 2010.

Migration[edit]

MancuNET agreed to host the new site, doomwiki.org. The server maintainers are Manc and Quasar, neither of whom had previous MediaWiki backend experience, making preparation a slow process. Further delays were caused by hardware failures, ISP outages, misbehaving database software, and (as in all joint ventures among gamers) short tempers. Nonetheless, the collaboration persisted and eventually made everything functional. For legal reasons, the MediaWiki database dumps exclude images [7], but spicyjack provided crucial assistance in mass-downloading them.

The snapshot of doom.wikia.com was completed February 17, 2011. Subsequent edits will not be automatically migrated.

June 9, 2011 saw administrators and "power users" from the old site invited to participate in cleanup tasks.

Relaunch[edit]

The new site was launched on September 5, 2011. In theory, the Wikia site could continue to evolve with a different "mission", but a large majority of those commenting felt a clean break had occurred. Users were cautioned that posting links on the Wikia site (or even vandalizing it) might not be worthwhile. [8]

As of this writing (several weeks later), some minor technical issues remain, and some new features clearly need fine tuning. Most community members seem to accept doomwiki.org as "the" Doom Wiki, however, and editing has resumed at its customary pace.

Bibliography[edit]