On Wikia you asked for some feedback and suggestions, so here goes... I'm pretty sure I really like wiki's idea a lot, assuming I understand it. But that's the first problem -- it's still way to vague. Instead of "I am, because we are", try having a description like "the wiki of healing the world's pain," or something like that. Additionally, you should be able to describe the entire concept in a couple introductory sentences on the "about" page, followed by further expansions and explanations, instead of the meandering description.
Two more reccomendations: change the picture to something we can associate with the concept, such as a simple globe. Second, if you set up clear categories of "problems" and "solutions", that would make for a great level of interaction equivalent to that found on Yahoo! Answers. (One user could post an article raising a problem while another could post a solution.) For example, the article Sweat Shops should consist of a description of what sweatshops are, why they exist, and why they are a problem, rather than barging in medius res with "here's a directory of non-sweatshop firms". Make the assumption that we don't know what sweatshops are in the first place. Then, you can list various solutions and alternatives on linked pages.
None of this means the site has to be boring, of course. To return to the same example, the sweatshops article can be written in an engaging, personal magazine-column style, admitting why it's so tempting for everyday consumers to support such institutions anyway, then contrasting this with the living standards of such places.
Finally, you should make an emphasis on citing sources, similar to that of Wikipedia -- this will bolster the strength of all the arguments being made, so that they aren't easily dismissed. Likewise, a more professional tone in some areas wouldn't hurt.
All that aside, this is looking to become a great site --keep up the good work! -- Lenoxus (This isn't working!/¡No funciona!) 14:57, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Excellent Feedback thank you ! Edit
Really appreciate you taking the time to give your consideration to this site, and look forward to any future involvement... I've given your feedback some thought over the last few days and am of course, in the spirit of wikis, very happy to see you make any changes you think desirable.
As for the strapline / motto 'I am because we are', that comes from an Ubuntu ethic which you can read about in the concept page - the wiki is anyone's to improve, but the idea behind this motto is similar to badges and mottoes that you see on family crests of arms or as part of company logos the world over - they are a bit vague, but on the other hand they're inclusive too - like the US police with 'to protect and to serve' or the SAS with 'Who dares wins'. See what you think when you've read the concept too.
Also in the concept is the idea of improving or growth through positivity - in this wiki we have in common a positive attitude that likes to find positive aspects of a situation or assessment and to use those elements, as opposed to focussing our attention on the negative things we perceive and trying to find ways of fixing them. It's a way of perceiving weaknesses as strengths, most famously in guerilla tactics, whereby a small, outnumbered, poorly equipped and less well trained and nourished fighting force use these attributes as qualities - re-perceiving them as the strength of mobility, flexibility, low reliance on resources and opportunism.
There are easier ways to have a collaborative wiki which pools information about healing the world, but in the early stages we're sticking with a positive approach to situations, and avoiding or turning our attention away from any problems, sticky issues, difficult things. If well fed, our strengths will be the attributes that overcome any obstacles, so let's focus on those.
I agree with you that the explanation of the wiki on the front page is quite complex and I'd like to see it simplified in time, but I feel that in the very early stages of a wiki's life very close definition is required, and this quantity of material does give the first editors a good repository of guidance to refer to. When we're past our first few hundred edits this material can be pasted elsewhere, with a more pithy and attractive mission on the front page, but our first target is to seed post up to, say, 365 pages of useable and useful information.
This reply should explain why the format is currently solutions focussed, rather than identifying problems. In fact, the only detail about problems that's really relevant at all is that amount which is necessary to describe how useful the solution will be! If we only ever posted solutions, or ways of living, that should be enough - then the emergent benefits of following the guidance found in WorldHealer can be edited in subsequently. Most of all we shall avoid detailing the ills of the world, which we can wallow in whenever we want just by switching on the tv!
I can see the benefits of citing sources, but I'd also counsel a free, conversational and even colloquial style for anyone who would like to use it - we're only as good as our editors' level of interest so in an early stage pages should go on in whatever style the editor chooses - the emphasis this early lies with creativity and open minds, and, as per the concept, we can worry about better and best later.
I think we'll definitely reach a point where your feedback is built in to the site, and with a good number of editors and readers that's an exciting prospect and a possible one. I couldn't agree with you more about the logo too - in fact work is underway on a suitable image, but again it's going to be something very broad, inclusive and open!
Let's get our number of editors up and contributions in, and then start to marshal our resources in a more clear and specific way when we can afford to.
Once again thank you very much for the time taken to give feedback, and let us know what you like most so that we can do more of it!
Finally, if you're moved to improve things yourself we'd be really, really grateful, notwithstanding the guidance and information given here.
Patrick 13:17, 26 March 2007 (UTC)