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Memory Alpha:External links

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Memory Alpha  AboutPolicies and guidelines → External links
Memory Alpha
This page describes one of Memory Alpha's policies and guidelines

Please read through the policy below to familiarize yourself with our common practices and rules.
If you have any questions, suggestions, or complaints, please post them on the talk page.

The point of a wiki is to build the web by creating an ever-expanding network of interlinked articles. Don't create links to external pages as part of the article text – more than likely, we'll want to have an article on that subject right here on Memory Alpha. Links to nonexistent articles are perfectly all right – in fact, they're encouraged (under the appropriate circumstances, of course).

For example, don't write something like this: "The USS Wellington was a Niagara-class starship" – note the external link to another page. Certainly, Bernd Schneider's site is an excellent resource for starships of all sorts, but the link is in the wrong place. Where would we put the link to Memory Alpha's article on the Niagara-class?

Instead, external links should go in a separate section of the article (at the bottom of the page), where these links can be listed for further reading. In this case, the external link to Ex Astris Scientia should be placed at the bottom of our Niagara-class article.

Related to this, readers don't always have the time to conduct their own in-depth research on a specific subject. Websites can often take a long time to load, and even longer to evaluate their content. As such, providing a plain link like this...

... is often not useful, because the reader has no idea just what the linked website is about. Who maintains it? What is its focus? How good is it?

Instead, provide a short description about the link to assist the reader in evaluating it, like this:

  • Ex Astris Scientia - Bernd Schneider's website is devoted to the careful analysis of starships of all sorts. Includes reconstructions of the kitbashes seen in the Wolf 359 wreckage and a database of all starships seen on screen.

Additionally, if the external link is to a specific page that requires special software to interpret (for example, a PDF document), it is useful to add a note to that effect.

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