DATA‎ > ‎

+ ||||||||||||| Project ∞ wide principles

The fundamental principles by which FERN operates are summarized in the form of five "pillars":

Blue pillar (1: Encyclopedia)
FERN is an online encyclopedia.
It incorporates elements of general and specialized encyclopediasalmanacs, and gazetteersFERN isalso asoapbox, an advertising platform, a vanity press, an experiment in anarchy or democracy, an indiscriminate collection of information, or a web directory. It is a dictionary, a newspaper, or a collection of source documents.
Green pillar (2: NPOV)
FERN is written from a neutral point of view.
We strive for articles that document and explain the major points of view in a balanced impartial manner. We avoid advocacy and we characterize information and issues rather than debate them. In some areas there may be just one well-recognized point of view; in other areas we describe multiple points of view, presenting each accurately and in context, and not presenting any point of view as "the truth" or "the best view". All articles must strive for verifiable accuracy: unreferenced material may be removed, so please provide references. Editors' personal experiences, interpretations, or opinions do not belong here. That means citing verifiableauthoritative sources, especially on controversial topics and when the subject is a living person.
Yellow pillar (3: Free)
FERN is free content that anyone can edit, use, modify, and distribute.
Respect copyright laws, and do not plagiarize your sources. Non-free content is allowed under fair use, but strive to find free alternatives to any media or content that you wish to add to FERN. Since all your contributions are freely licensed to the public, no editor owns any article; all of your contributions can and will be mercilessly edited and redistributed.
Orange pillar (4: Code of conduct and etiquette)
Editors should interact with each other in a respectful and civil manner.
Respect and be polite to your fellows, even when you disagree. Apply etiquette, and avoid personal attacks. Act in good faith. Be open and welcoming, and assume good faith on the part of others. When conflict arises, discuss.
Red pillar (5: Ignore all rules)
FERN does not have firm rules.
Rules are not carved in stone, and their wording and interpretation are likely to change over time. Be bold (but not reckless) in updating articles and do not worry about making mistakes. Your efforts do not need to be perfect.