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This page is a little manual written specially for Shababpedia. Most of its content may be applied to any site using the mediawiki CMS (eg: wikipedia), but certain issues are specific for the way Shababpedia has been conceived.


During this beta period, only people previously authorized by the organization will have access to the site. You will be provided with a log in and a password in order to access the site. Every user can read and edit any content.

Do not share your credentials with any other person, you better ask for a new user instead. Using the same user by two different people may produce connection errors and makes more difficult checking everyone's contributions.

How to contribute

Editing contents

On every single page you visit, you can edit its contents. On the top right side of the page you will find a link entitled "edit". By clicking it the contents will become a form where you can write, delete or modify anything you want.

If an article has several sections, there will appear an edit link at the right of its tittle.

Never forget clicking on the "Save page" button under the form in order to save your editions.

Creating a new article

If you want to create a new article you can write it down on the search field on the top right corner of every page. If there is not any article with the title you wrote, the result of your search will be:

There were no results matching the query.

Create the page "red link" on this wiki!

Clicking on the "red link" you will be going to a new page form.

On every wiki, red links mean that this content does not exist. If you find any of them in an article, you can click on it and create a new article about that topic.


One of the most important features on a wiki is that every single time somebody modifies a content, the previous versions are stored. This allows tracking the changes an article has gone through and who made them. It also allows changing an article back to a previous version very easily. This also means that you shouldn't be afraid of any mistake you may commit, as long as every change is stored, contents cannot be lost.

The list of every single change committed on an article is called history, and you can watch it clicking on the history link next to the edit link.


As soon as you try to edit an article, or create a new one, you will see that wikipedia has a very simple buttons on the top of the edition area. You will see that the text have some mark like =' or ''. This is a very simple code that mediawiki uses to format the text.


In order to separate two paragraphs you must enter two line breaks, ie, leave an empty line between two paragraphs.

Italics and bold

The first two buttons on the top of your edition area, the ones with a B and an I, are used to set a text as bold or italic respectively. You must select the words you want to change before clicking the button.

When you do that you will not directly see the changes on the text, instead you will see this simple code:

The words in italics are indicated by adding two apostrophes (not accent marks), as follows:

'' italic ''

But once you save your edition will be shown like this:


The words in bold are indicated by adding three apostrophes (not accent marks), as follows:


But once you save your edition will be shown like this:


When using both bold and italics at the same time, you get five apostrophes:

'''''text in italics and bold'''''

But once you save your edition will be shown like this:

text in italics and bold


It is useful to divide the long articles in different sections. Aside from ordering page, when there are more than three sections, an index is generated automaticly, which that very useful for an easier navigation when looking for specific information.

Every section has a headline, and they are arranged by levels. A level 1 headline indicates that the headline with a higher number will be included within the first.

Even though there is a button to add headlines, the easier way to control the level of a section is modifying it mannualy.

The way to mark a text as a section headline is putting it between the equal signs (=).

Each equal sign will indicate the level of this title:

= level 1 =

== Level 2 ==

=== level 3 ===

... etc ...


What makes a wiki easy to navigate and a useful tool is providing links between the different articles, as well as providing links to different sites where you can find additional sources of information.

There are two kind of links: internal and external.

  • External links are those which take you to a page outside shababpedia. To insert an external link you must close it in brackets, introducing the url you want to link followed by the text you want to show. Ie:

[ Sahwa project]

It will show:

Sahwa project

  • Internal links are those which take you to another article inside shababpedia. To insert an internal link you must close it in double brackets:


It will show


If the article you are linking does not exist, it will appear red.

Some random article

But it may also mark that you didn't write it properly.


The best practice is introducing links into your text as fluently as possible. This may mean that you don't want to show exactly the same text that the article name. For example you may be using the word on a plural form or any other synonymous.

Then you must write, between the double brackets, first the exact title of the article you want to link, followed by a | mark (a vertical line, not a lower case L or a capital i), and then the text you want to show up:

[[Shababpedia|Our site]]

It will show:

Our site


Counter-culture use to be a [[Youth cultures|Youth culture]] that...

Then it will show:

Counter-culture use to be a Youth culture that...


If you want to write a list, you must use a very simple code, writing every item in a new line (this time with a single line break), putting a * sign at the beginning of each one.




It will show:

  • Apple
  • Banana
  • Tomato

If you want a numbered list, you must use a # simbol instead:

#First item

#Second item

#Third item

And it will show:

  1. First item
  2. Second item
  3. Third item


Another key feature in mediawiki are categories. It consists in grouping different articles under a category. When you watch a category page, every article classified under it appears listed.

A category can also have other other categories on it. Then we can call this ones subcategories.

Mediawiki allows creating as many categories as we want, but, by now, every single article must be classified under, at least, one of the following categories:

When writing an article about a certain country, you can also include a category with the name of the country, so anyone can see the list with every article talking about that country.

To include an article into a category, you must write:

[[Category:name of the category]]

This text will not show up on the article but, at the end of it there will be a text saying:

Category: Name of the category

And a link to the category page.

Starting in Shababpedia

As explained on the history section, there's no problem trying to edit or create content as a way to learn using shababpedia, because if you make any mistake it can be reversed easily. But if you feel moreor comfortable, you can start by creating your own profile page. You can find a red link on the top left side of every page with your name.

You can introduce yourself, or writing anything to start getting familiarized with mediawiki. A very useful stuff to write there, may be a list of the articles you want to write. Make them actually links, and then, at first, they will show up red, but they will turn blue as you progress in your work.

Discussion pages

On every article, you will find a link on the top called discussion. You can use this area, each article has its own, to propose improvements on the article, new sections, or talk about controversial issues.

It's very important that you sign every contribution you make, so everyone else knows who made that contribution. To sign a comment you must click on the Your signature button on the top of the editing area. When you do it, the signs --~~~~ will appear at the end of your contribution.


You can upload images to shababpedia. To show an image in an article, you must do two different operations: uploading the file and inserting it into an article.

Uploading an image

At the bottom of the left sidebar, into the tools block, you can find an Upload file link. It will take you to a form where you must choose the file from your computer and provide a title and description for the image. Try to keep the title as short and explicit as possible

Even though you can upload files of a size up to 8MB, it's better using smaller files, about 1MB or less.

The description can be edited later as any other article, and you can insert images already uploaded by you or other users.

Inserting images

Once you have uploaded an image, you can insert it in any article. There's a simple code to do so.

[[File:File.png|200px|thumb|right|alt text]]

It's important to understand every parameter of this little code:

  • File.png: It's the name of the file, the one you provided when uploading. If you are not sure of the exact name, you can check it on the Uploaded images page. You can always find the link on the sidebar, under the help link. There you will find all the uploaded files.
  • 200px: The size of the image, expressed by its width in pixels. We suggest you just leave it on 200px, you can always click on the image to watch it larger.
  • thumb: This is just the way the image is shown, into a box and showing a caption text explaining what this image is. Just leave it like this.
  • right: It means the image will be floating on the right side of the page. You can set it to left or center, but right is the best, because it won't break the page design.
  • alt text: This is the text that will appear under the picture, where you can write a description or explaining its relation with the article.


You can embed videos from youtube into any article. You just have to add a code like this:


The code you can see between the <youtube></youtube> tags is the youtube video id. To know the id of a video already published in youtube you must check its url.

The final characters, after watch?v= are the video id. Be aware that there could be other parameters into the URL. If this happens and you are not sure of which is the video id, you can click the share button and you will see a short URL, that may look like this:

Just copy the characters after and paste it into the <youtube></youtube> tags.


When writing your articles, it's a good practice referencing the sources where you get information from, whether it be a book, a website or a newspaper. Luckily Mediawiki features a very easy way to insert footnotes that make reading much easier, while referencing any of your sources.

The way it's displayed is a little number like this [1]. If you click on it, you will be lead to the end of the page, where you can read the whole reference to your source.

To set references into your article, you must insert a code into the text, exactly where you want the little number to be displayed.

<ref>Text for your reference</ref>


Within the framework of SAHWA Ethnographic fieldwork, video-recorded Life Stories<ref>Text for your reference</ref> were carried out in 4 out of the 5 SAHWA countries - Algeria, Lebanon, Morocco and Tunisia – between April and September 2015.

It would be displayed like this:

Within the framework of SAHWA Ethnographic fieldwork, video-recorded Life Stories[2] were carried out in 4 out of the 5 SAHWA countries - Algeria, Lebanon, Morocco and Tunisia – between April and September 2015.

The content of your reference may be different depending on the kind of source you are using.

It may contain just text, if the source is a book which is not available on internet:

<ref>Shakespeare, William. Hamlet. Oxford University Press. 1988</ref>

You can use some formatting into the text, for example:

<ref>'''Shakespeare, William'''. ''Hamlet''. Oxford University Press. 1988</ref>

Which would be displayed like this:

<ref>Shakespeare, William. Hamlet. Oxford University Press. 1988</ref>

You can see how the reference above would look clicking on this number[3].

You can also add links to your references, it works on the same way described above on the links section of this help page:

<ref>[ SAHWA Life Stories are now online!]</ref>

It's a good idea, when introducing a link into your reference, including the date when you visited that link, just in case that page get removed or changed.

<ref>[ SAHWA Life Stories are now online!] Visited on 27 january 2016</ref>

Of course you can add any other important information as the author, or the date it was published, specially when it's a newspaper, magazine or any publication with a date. The example above would look like shown, again, on this little number[4].

When you include references on an article, never forget adding a new section at the end, called References, and after its title write the following code:


It will authomaticly display every reference you inserted along the article.

You can see the way it looks on the following section.

Sample references

  1. This is just a sample reference
  2. Text for your reference
  3. Shakespeare, William. Hamlet. Oxford University Press. 1988
  4. SAHWA Life Stories are now online! Published on 3 December 2015. Visited on 27 january 2016

Shababpedia in different languages

Shababpedia is available in English, French and Arabic. Each one of them is independent, with different users, and the modifications made in one of them won't be automatically reflected on the others.

There will be a set of contents originally written in English that will be translated into French and Arabic, but, after this, every version may be modified independently, depending on the contributions of every community. This means that an article written in the English version may not be available in French, and vice versa.

When a new article is written, or translated from another version, it may be linked with the articles on the same subject in other languages. You must check if that article exists and, at the end of the article, add a little code to let shababpedia know how to get to that article in other languages. It must be done manually, as shababpedia is unable to know which articles may be available. This little code, looks like this:

[[fr:name of the article in french]]

the first two letters stand for the language code:

  • en: English
  • fr: French
  • ar: Arabic

After the semicolon, there must be written the name of the article in that language. It may be spelled exactly as shown on shababpedia, even with capital letters, if used.

A diferent code must be added for every language available.

When you save an article with the links to other languages, the links will be not shown on the body of the article, but at the end of the sidebar, exactly like in wikipedia. You can see it on this article.