Difference between revisions of "WikiIslam:Writing Style Guide"
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Revision as of 11:58, 29 October 2013
It is often difficult for new editors at WikiIslam to understand what is or is not appropriate within articles. This page expands on the site's policies and guidelines concerning style, tone and content of its articles by providing a visual guide for editors.
The following tables provide examples of correct and incorrect style, tone and content. Most of these examples are genuine edits that were either reverted or amended. Note that there may be some overlap in examples, and a sentence having an issue corrected does not mean the remaining sentence is free from error (it may have multiple issues).
Style & Tone
|Because of this double standard, countries such as France, Belgium, Italy, and the Netherlands have banned people concealing their identity in public completely.||Because of this conflicting standard, [...]||The term "double-standard" has been replaced with a more neutral word.|
|Aisha even started a war against her old enemy Ali, causing ten thousand Muslims to kill each other in one day.||Aisha began a war against Ali that resulted in ten thousand fatalities in one day.||Avoid writing in an emotional, dramatic style. State the facts and nothing else.|
|Hiding your identity in public this way is completely legal in many western countries, whilst other face coverings such as balaclavas, masks, and motorcycle helmets will quickly get the wearer arrested if worn in a public place.||Hiding your identity in public this way is legal in many countries [...]||There is no reason for singling-out/providing undue attention to "western" countries when the issue being discussed applies equally to non-western countries.|
|The Gregorian calendar did not exist in Muhammad’s day, so reporting dates in Gregorian style is an anachronism. The Europeans used the Julian calendar, which was then only two or three days variant from the Gregorian. However, it will be convenient to compare Muhammad’s calendar with the one currently used by the majority of readers.||The Gregorian calendar did not exist in Muhammad’s day, so reporting dates in Gregorian style is an anachronism. However, it will be convenient to compare Muhammad’s calendar with the Gregorian calendar, which is internationally the most widely accepted and used civil calendar.||There is no reason to assume the target-audience are Europeans. In fact, while demographics vary from week to week, visitors from Africa and Asia often outnumber those from Europe or the United States. Material should be tailored to accommodate, as best as possible, a universal audience.|
|Shahid (شَهيد , plural: شُهَداء šuhadā) is an Islamic term for a martyr. As with adultery and justice, the term martyr in Islam differs from the secular and Biblical definitions of the word.||Shahid (شَهيد , plural: شُهَداء šuhadā) is an Islamic term for a martyr. As with adultery and justice, the term martyr in Islam differs from the commonly agreed upon definitions of the word.||Commentary on other religious traditions should be avoided. In this case, the Christian (or even Buddhist and Hindu) definitions would likely mirror the secular ones, so it is unnecessary to make a distinction.|
|The fact that the earth is not flat has been known for thousands of years. The Rigveda of Hindus (1700 BC or older), The Ancient Greeks Pythagoras (570 - 495 BC), Aristotle (384 - 322 BC) and Hipparchus (190 - 120 BC) all knew this. The Indian astronomer and mathematician, Aryabhata (476 - 550 AD) knew this.||The fact that the earth is not flat has been known for thousands of years. The Ancient Greeks Pythagoras (570 - 495 BC), Aristotle (384 - 322 BC) and Hipparchus (190 - 120 BC) all knew this. The Indian astronomer and mathematician, Aryabhata (476 - 550 AD) knew this.||Positive and definitive claims about what other religious texts (Bible, Rigveda, etc.) say should be avoided because such texts are open to interpretation and our aim is to remain neutral towards them. The examples given are sufficient and already cover India, so mentioning the Rigveda is unnecessary.|
Presentation of Facts
|Time would show that Aisha was confident, spirited, strong-willed and highly intelligent – she had indeed “some of the qualities of Khadijah”.||(avoid)||This sentence draws conclusions from text that can be debated. There are no hadiths that mention explicitly that Aisha was 'intelligent', 'strong willed' and so on. Report facts and not opinions and deductions.|
|he must have been a good stepfather to Hala and Hind, for they remained unswervingly loyal to him.||(avoid)||This sentence is drawing conclusions that are not present in the original text. Stepchildren remaining loyal could equally suggest that Muhammad was a strict and uncaring disciplinarian. But since neither conclusion is supported by facts, commenting on them should be avoided.|
|Juwayriya was sweet-natured, charming and as alluringly beautiful as a fairy; men became infatuated with her at first sight.||Juwayriya was described in some hadiths as "jinnya" which some dictionaries translate to "angel like".||An editor's own conclusions or exaggerations are being replaced with facts.|
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