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The Wiki Rule
There's a wiki for that.

There is no area of interest, no matter how narrowly defined, where a person cannot put up a wiki for it and attract at least a few editors with similar interests. Increasingly, in fact, there is a chance that someone already has put up a wiki for it. For example, here's one for cacti. The plants.

In the early days of the Internet, there was a similar phenomenon, the "everything has its own home page" rule. Anyone with enough HTML savvy and a powerful enough interest in one particular subject could and often would create a site dedicated to it. This was largely how the early Web was forged, in fact. All the stuff we know and love today — e-commerce, social networking — that came later. Except porn. Porn was there from the beginning.

With the advent of Wikipedia, the playing field changed. Rather than rely on a collection of sites each written by one person with questionable expertise, users could find most of the information they needed in an article written, edited, and fact-checked by an entire userbase of people with questionable expertise, but all on one easy-to-remember site. The interest in hand-crafted "fan sites" waned.

However, a number of factors kept Wikipedia from being a perfect replacement for the old system. A desire for greater detail on the topic than Wikipedia is willing to allow, for one. Schisms or differing schools of thought on the topic was another. Fan-made wikis sprang up to bring back the world of homemade sites with the added benefits of the wiki model.

The "wiki-sphere" is becoming a vast depository of information at all levels of detail. The encyclopedic wikis are collecting a great breadth of topics at an increasingly shallow level of detail, and the topic-intensive wikis are gathering all the details.

Not all Wikis are on the major search engines, though. Corporations use wikis behind firewalls, the American CIA uses one to collate data among agents and analysts, and even publishers of dead-tree books use them to coordinate edits among authors, editors and copy editors.

Fan-made wikis are usually made on wiki farms, such as Wikia, or else are hosted on a preexisting fansite. Recently, organisations such as NIWA (Nintendo Independent Wiki Alliance) have spoken out against the commercialization that takes place on wiki farms, and have encouraged fans to set up their own websites.

Wikis can reach truly huge sizes. To put them up as candidate for a Doorstopper is an understatement. See the list of largest wikis. Note: If you're looking for TV Tropes, we're in the "List of largest other wikis", which is at the bottom of the page. The first list only has MediaWiki wikis.

We aren't the only ones to notice that there's a wiki for everything. Cracked, as usual, has also noticed, and produced this list of some of the more extreme examples.

The "dead tree" equivalent of this is The Magazine Rule.

Examples

    open/close all folders 

    General 

    Anime & Manga 

    Comic Books 

    Films — Animated 

    Films - Live-Action 

    Gamebooks 

    Literature 

    Live-Action TV 

    Music 

    Newspaper Comics 

    Tabletop Games 

    Theme Parks 

    Toys 

    Video Games 

    Webcomics 

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 

    Real Life 

Wiki MagicWiki TropesWiki Schizophrenia
Why Fandom Can't Have Nice ThingsTriviaWord of Dante
What Measure Is a Non-Human?Laws and FormulasYour Magic's No Good Here

alternative title(s): Wiki Rule; Rule78; Rule Seventy Eight
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