"Words can be changed, rethought, fiddled with, and, of course, ultimately denied. Painters don't have that luxury. If they go into a coffee shop, their paint dries into a hard mass." - Steve Martin, "Writing Is Easy"
I've been a Content Editor
for a few months now and during my time doing my editorly duty, I've noticed something that I'm sure is not a shocking surprise: there's a lot of abandonded writeups around here. Now I know that's to be expected in some cases, as we also have a lot of fled users, and their writeups pretty much gather dust unless they get nuked or C!ed. On the other hand, we also have a lot of active noders. We spend our days cranking out new nodes, eager for feedback and upvotes and C!s and friendly banter. From time to time I hit the Random Node
s to check out whatever the database fairies choose to send me. During my travels I've come across a number of writeups that have not aged very well: "upcoming" gossip for films or games released in 2001, television episode guides abandoned after six episodes worth of data, and other such content from active users.
I'll use myself as an example. During my first week as a noder I wrote a little paragraph on a then-upcoming video game called Wario World. When I wrote the little blurb all that was known about the game was that it starred Nintendo's anti-hero Wario and that the game was in development. Today I would never submit a writeup with such little information, but as a newbie to the community I didn't know any better and my little writeup was largely ignored. I moved on in my noding career and didn't think much about the Wario World writeup until the game was actually released one year later. Now, with the game in the public eye, anyone who went to the Wario World node would find my little pathetic incomplete writeup, sitting there all dated and alone and just begging for a downvote or nuking. I updated the writeup with my usual style of video game review and comments and now it's accurate, up-to-date, and probably won't change very much over time.
We're noding for the ages here, folks. I implore you to revisit your old writeups from time to time and dust them off. Check for outdated information and bring the old material up to date where applicable. Add new information to keep things current. Delete information that was, at one time, accurate but is now just plain wrong. Have your writeups that are beyond help nuked and start over from scratch. Don't start a long-term project that you don't plan to finish. Our words are always there waiting for us to return and it's important that we visit with them from time to time to make sure that they're in good shape.