Wikipedia:WikiProject Guild of Copy Editors/Blitzes

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This is an initiative of the Guild of Copy Editors. To make suggestions for improvement or to give any other feedback, please put a message on our main talk page.

Blitzes are week-long efforts of the Guild of Copy Editors to reduce the backlog of articles that require copy editing. Each blitz has a specific theme and goal. Awards are given to editors who participate.

The coordinators for each blitz are listed on each blitz page. If you have any questions, please first consult our FAQ page. If you do not find the answer, leave a message on the blitz's talk page; we will be happy to help you.

Blitzes are open to all Wikipedians. The GOCE welcomes and encourages Wikipedians who are new to copy editing, or who are out of practice, to participate. You may copy edit as many—or as few—articles as you wish. If you want someone to review your work, feel free to ask on the current blitz's talk page and one of the coordinators will gladly assist.

Please make sure that you know how to copy edit and that you are familiar with the Wikipedia Manual of Style before you begin copy editing.

Instructions for participants[edit]

  1. Sign up for the blitz. On the blitz's page, find the "Signing up" section and press the "Create your articles list" button. This creates a subsection of the page where you will record your copy edits.
    • If you participated in the previous blitz, add any Rollover words you may have earned. You'll find this number on the "Barnstars" page—follow the link in the "Signing up" section of the current blitz's page. In the "Totals" table, find the number in the column marked "New rollover words". Place this number on the "Rollover words" line in your subsection of the current blitz page. You do not perform any calculations with this number; coordinators will add the rollover words to your total at the end of the drive.
  2. Find an article to copy edit: see the "Finding Articles" section below. Articles listed on the Requests page also count towards your blitz totals—these higher-quality articles don't usually have {{copy edit}} tags. Follow all Requests page instructions.
    • Check the "View history" tab for the article you've chosen and look for any recent copy editing activity. Also look for a "GOCE in use" tag on the article. It is counter-productive for two copy editors to simultaneously work on the same article.
    • Optionally, place a {{Goce in use}} tag on top of the article, to inform other participants and editors you are editing it.
  3. Obtain the article's word count: use this script (see below).
    • This should be the word count before you start editing the article.
    • Write down the number somewhere for later viewing.
  4. Record your chosen article in the "Totals" section of the blitz page. Your subsection is automatically populated with  # {{Working}} [[]] () and # {{Completed}} [[]] ():
    • Use the {{Working}} line for the one article you are actively copy editing. You should not start another article until this one is completed.
    • Article titles go in wikilinks [[]]. List the article's full title, not an abbreviated version.
    • Article word counts go in round brackets (parentheses) ().
    • Place any comments, in parentheses, between the article title and the word count (also in parentheses).
    • Check using the "Show preview" button, then save.
    • Remove any extant {{copy edit}} tags in the article.
  5. Copy edit the article.
  6. Record your completed work on your subsection of the drive page by changing {{Working}} to {{Completed}}.
    • You may manually update your total articles and total words.
    • Check using the "Show preview" button then save. Articles not logged or improperly logged will not be credited.

Dos and Don'ts[edit]

  • Don't "rubber-stamp" articles. Be thorough and complete in your copy edits, working to the end of the article. The prose in copy edited articles should comply with the Manual of Style and be free of grammatical, punctuation, and spelling errors. Rejected work will not count towards your total and you may be penalized for it.
  • Don't create extra work; don't copy edit any articles to which you have recently added a {{copy edit}} tag.
  • Don't count what you haven't copy edited. Sometimes articles or sections are unsuitable for copy editing or may not need any work. Don't count words in articles or sections that you have not copy edited.
    • If, after examining an article, you find that copy editing is inappropriate or cannot be completed due to other issues, you may consider removing extant {{copyedit}} tags and taking extra actions—like placing {{GOCEreviewed}} on the talk page, deleting inappropriate material, reporting suspected copyright violation and so on.
  • Do have fun; we're here to help bring these articles to their fullest potential and improve the overall quality of the encyclopedia. If you don't enjoy doing that, there is no motivation to improve these articles and the encyclopedia as a whole.

Useful tags[edit]

While we do our best to copy edit articles, this is not always achievable. Articles may be unstable, have confusing text or need attention from experts in that subject area. In these instances we can use a tag to attract such help for the article. Some useful tags are:

{{off-topic}} ~ {{Expert-verify}} ~ {{Expert-subject}} ~ {{contradict}} ~ {{confusing}} ~ {{refimprove}} ~ {{nofootnotes}} ~ {{notability}} ~ {{original research}} ~ {{crystal}} ~ {{POV}} ~ {{unreferenced}}

See WP:TC for a full list of cleanup template messages.

Word counting script[edit]

Here are the instructions for installing and using the word counting script:

To add the script that calculates page size:[Credit 1]

  1. If you have JavaScript enabled, go here to access your skin's .js file.
    • If you do not have JavaScript enabled and either do not wish to or cannot, go to Special:Preferences and click on the Appearance tab. In the very first section, Skin, click on Custom JavaScript next to the name of the selected skin.
  2. Click Edit on the page that is opened.
  3. Add the following code to the page and save it: {{subst:js|User:Dr pda/prosesize.js}}[Credit 2]
  4. Reload the cache:
    • If you are using Internet Explorer, press Ctrl-F5
    • If you are using Firefox/Safari for Windows, hold down Shift while clicking Reload (or press Ctrl-Shift-R); for Mac, press Command-R.
    • If you are using Opera/Konqueror, press F5.
  5. To test the script, go to a random article, look under the Toolbox menu on the far left of the screen and find the link for Page size. The backlog elimination drive uses the number of words listed under Prose size (text only).
  6. Go copy edit!

Finding articles[edit]

The following information depends on the theme—be sure to check that first! If the theme is requests, see the requests page! Some copy editors enjoy taking a random dip in Category:All articles needing copy edit and learning about something completely new along the way. Others prefer editing articles in a field they already know about. Such articles can be found using categories:[Credit 3]

  1. Go to the PetScan tool.
  2. Set the Depth to 5.
  3. Write or paste Wikipedia articles needing copy edit in the box labelled "Categories".
  4. Write the name of a category you're interested in on a separate line in the same box, for example; Books.
  5. Scroll down and click the button labelled "Do it!"
  6. Be patient; large categories might take a little while to search.

This example will find articles tagged with {{copy edit}} in Category:Books, as well as its sub-categories, sub-sub-categories, and so on down to sub-sub-sub-sub-sub-categories.

  1. ^ All credit for these instructions go to TheTito Discuss
  2. ^ All credit for the script goes to User:Dr pda at User talk:Dr pda/prosesize.js
  3. ^ Basically ripped from here; original tip from #Jubileeclipman

Rollover words [edit]

Rollover words are words from your blitz total that did not count towards an award. These are carried forward—or "rolled over"—to the next blitz. For example, if Example copy edits 12,718 words, they will receive the Tireless Contributor Barnstar (10,000 words). Their remaining 2,718 words are rolled over until the next blitz, at the conclusion of which they are added to the total word count. Thus, if Example copy edits 1,400 words in the following blitz, they will receive the Working Wikipedian's Barnstar (4,000 words) and 118 rollover words (2,718 plus 1,400, minus 4,000).

Rollover words are only valid until the next blitz. If Example earned 14,000 rollover words in a February blitz and did not participate in the April blitz, they cannot use them in the June blitz; their rollover count will return to zero. Blitz rollover words and drive rollover words are not interchangeable; they can only be used for the next blitz or drive (respectively).


The following awards are given out at the conclusion of the blitz.

Total word count awards[edit]

Minor Barnstar.png At least one copy edit
The Minor Barnstar
CopyeditorStar7.PNG At least 15,000 words
The (old school) League of Copy Editors Barnstar
Modest Barnstar.png At least 2,000 words
The Modest Barnstar
Copyedit Barnstar Hires.png At least 20,000 words
The (modern) Guild of Copy Editors Barnstar
Working Man's Barnstar.png At least 4,000 words
The Working Wikipedian's Barnstar
Barnstar of Diligence.png At least 30,000 words
The Barnstar of Diligence
CleanupBarnstar.PNG At least 6,000 words
The Cleanup Barnstar
SuperiorContentReviewScribe.png At least 40,000 words
The Order of the Superior Scribe of Wikipedia
Tireless Contributor Barnstar.gif At least 10,000 words
The Tireless Contributor Barnstar
Most Excellent Order of Star Scribes.png At least 50,000 words
A special, VERY exclusive award created just for the few, the happy few: the Most Excellent Order of the Caretaker's Star

10k award[edit]


Anyone who copy edits at least one individual article of more than 10,000 words will receive The 10k Copy Edit Barnstar.


Participants can place a drive userbox on their userpage using {{User Copyedit Blitzes|X}}. Replace X with the number of blitzes you have participated in. It displays as follows:

Writing Magnifying.PNGThis user has participated in X Copy Editing Project Blitzes with the Guild of Copy Editors.

Instructions for coordinators[edit]