wikiHow is a web-based and wiki-based community, consisting of an extensive database of how-to
A how-to or a how to is an informal, often short, description of how to accomplish some specific task. A how-to is usually meant to help non-experts, may leave out details that are only important to experts, and may also be greatly simplified from an overall discussion of the topic...

 guides. wikiHow's mission is to build the world's largest and highest quality how-to manual. The site started as an extension of the already existing eHow
eHow is an online how-to guide with more than 1 million articles and 170,000 videos offering step-by-step instructions. eHow articles and videos are created by freelancers and cover a wide variety of topics organized into a hierarchy of categories. Any eHow user can leave comments or responses, but...

 website, and has evolved to host over 127,000 how-to articles. In December 2009, "wikiHow had 20 million unique readers from over 200 countries or territories. These 20 million different people visited it a total of over 25 million times in the month."

All of the site's content is licensed under Creative Commons
Creative Commons
Creative Commons is a non-profit organization headquartered in Mountain View, California, United States devoted to expanding the range of creative works available for others to build upon legally and to share. The organization has released several copyright-licenses known as Creative Commons...

 (by-nc-sa); and the site uses a modified version of MediaWiki
MediaWiki is a popular free web-based wiki software application. Developed by the Wikimedia Foundation, it is used to run all of its projects, including Wikipedia, Wiktionary and Wikinews. Numerous other wikis around the world also use it to power their websites...

 1.12, which is open source
Open source
The term open source describes practices in production and development that promote access to the end product's source materials. Some consider open source a philosophy, others consider it a pragmatic methodology...



On January 15, 2005, the two owners of eHow, Jack Herrick
Jack Herrick
Jack Herrick is an American entrepreneur and wiki enthusiast. His entrepreneurial projects include wikiHow, eHow, Luminescent Technologies, and BigTray.In January 2005, Mr...

 and Josh Hannah
Josh Hannah
Josh Hannah is a webmaster of eHow and was instrumental in helping to provide the initial funding necessary for founding wikiHow by Jack Herrick. In March 2004, Hannah and Herrick bought eHow from IdeaExchange. In 15 January 2005, inspired by Wikipedia, Herrick and Hannah created wikiHow. The date...

, started wikiHow—a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest how-to manual. While eHow already contained instructions on how to do thousands of things, wikiHow allowed a community of volunteer contributors to build something even bigger and better. On 28 April 2006, eHow was sold to Demand Media
Demand Media
Demand Media, Inc. is an online media company and content farm that operates online brands such as eHow, and Cracked, and is known for creating online content through its Demand Media Studios division based on a combination of measured consumer demand and predicted ROI...

 and wikiHow was launched as an independent site on its own domain.

As of November 2011, the number of registered wikiHow users stood at 387,490. wikiHow hit 50,000 articles on January 28, 2009. On March 11, 2011, the number of how to articles hit 100,000. 101 users are administrators, and two are bureaucrats.

As of November 2011, there have been over 7,224,751 page edits, there are over 127,479 articles, 387,490 users, and 1,099,137,196 page views.

Content and article format

wikiHow is a wiki
A wiki is a website that allows the creation and editing of any number of interlinked web pages via a web browser using a simplified markup language or a WYSIWYG text editor. Wikis are typically powered by wiki software and are often used collaboratively by multiple users. Examples include...

, which is a website that anyone can edit. wikiHow operates on open source software and an open content licensing model allowing free use and community ownership of the content.

Any visitor to wikiHow can create a new page and write about how to do something. Articles posted to wikiHow follow a standard format consisting of a summary, followed by ingredients (if any), steps to complete the activity, along with tips, warnings, required items, links to related how-to articles, and a section for sources & citations. Pictures may be added to the articles to illustrate important points or concepts. Once the page is submitted, other visitors can edit, improve, or change the page. Anonymous contributors and the wikiHow user community work together to improve the quality of information provided on the site, fix or remove incorrect instructions, and revert vandalism.

Deletion policy

wikiHow's deletion policy prohibits articles on topics that are advertisements
Advertising is a form of communication used to persuade an audience to take some action with respect to products, ideas, or services. Most commonly, the desired result is to drive consumer behavior with respect to a commercial offering, although political and ideological advertising is also common...

/spams, inaccurate
Accuracy and precision
In the fields of science, engineering, industry and statistics, the accuracy of a measurement system is the degree of closeness of measurements of a quantity to that quantity's actual value. The precision of a measurement system, also called reproducibility or repeatability, is the degree to which...

, joke
A joke is a phrase or a paragraph with a humorous twist. It can be in many different forms, such as a question or short story. To achieve this end, jokes may employ irony, sarcasm, word play and other devices...

s, potty humor, sarcastic
Sarcasm is “a sharp, bitter, or cutting expression or remark; a bitter jibe or taunt.” Though irony and understatement is usually the immediate context, most authorities distinguish sarcasm from irony; however, others argue that sarcasm may or often does involve irony or employs...

, sexually
Human sexuality
Human sexuality is the awareness of gender differences, and the capacity to have erotic experiences and responses. Human sexuality can also be described as the way someone is sexually attracted to another person whether it is to opposite sexes , to the same sex , to either sexes , or not being...

 charged, hate
Hatred is a deep and emotional extreme dislike, directed against a certain object or class of objects. The objects of such hatred can vary widely, from inanimate objects to animals, oneself or other people, entire groups of people, people in general, existence, or the whole world...

Racism is the belief that inherent different traits in human racial groups justify discrimination. In the modern English language, the term "racism" is used predominantly as a pejorative epithet. It is applied especially to the practice or advocacy of racial discrimination of a pernicious nature...

-based, mean-spirited, impossible
In contract law, impossibility is an excuse for the nonperformance of duties under a contract, based on a change in circumstances , the nonoccurrence of which was an underlying assumption of the contract, that makes performance of the contract literally impossible...

 instructions, social instructions impossible for an individual to accomplish, universally illegal, copyright
Copyright is a legal concept, enacted by most governments, giving the creator of an original work exclusive rights to it, usually for a limited time...

 violations, below character
Moral character
Moral character or character is an evaluation of a particular individual's durable moral qualities. The concept of character can imply a variety of attributes including the existence or lack of virtues such as integrity, courage, fortitude, honesty, and loyalty, or of good behaviors or habits...

 article standards, focused on recreational drugs
Recreational drug use
Recreational drug use is the use of a drug, usually psychoactive, with the intention of creating or enhancing recreational experience. Such use is controversial, however, often being considered to be also drug abuse, and it is often illegal...

, political opinion
Freedom of thought
Freedom of thought is the freedom of an individual to hold or consider a fact, viewpoint, or thought, independent of others' viewpoints....

 promoting or criticizing a particular political party
Political party
A political party is a political organization that typically seeks to influence government policy, usually by nominating their own candidates and trying to seat them in political office. Parties participate in electoral campaigns, educational outreach or protest actions...

/candidate/official, vanity
In conventional parlance, vanity is the excessive belief in one's own abilities or attractiveness to others. Prior to the 14th century it did not have such narcissistic undertones, and merely meant futility. The related term vainglory is now often seen as an archaic synonym for vanity, but...

 pages, or extremely dangerous
Risk is the potential that a chosen action or activity will lead to a loss . The notion implies that a choice having an influence on the outcome exists . Potential losses themselves may also be called "risks"...

 and reckless
Recklessness (psychology)
Recklessness is disregard for or indifference to the dangers of a situation or for the consequences of one's actions....


Business model

The site's initial start-up costs were to some extent financed from Herrick's sale of eHow. It is now funded from advertising on its pages, on the grounds that "...tasteful advertising is the most unobtrusive way to fund our operations." It does not seek contributions, asserting that solicitations are annoying, and it is run as a "hybrid organization" — a "for-profit company focused on creating a global public good in accordance with our mission".


wikiHow's content is published under the Creative Commons
Creative Commons
Creative Commons is a non-profit organization headquartered in Mountain View, California, United States devoted to expanding the range of creative works available for others to build upon legally and to share. The organization has released several copyright-licenses known as Creative Commons...

 Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike (by-nc-sa) license, which means that the content can be modified and reused for non-commercial purposes as long as the original authors are attributed and the license is not substantially changed. The authors retain full copyright to their content and may publish it elsewhere under different licenses. They grant wikiHow an irrevocable license to use the material for any purpose.

Opt-out ads

wikiHow is one of only a handful of major websites to allow readers control over whether advertising appears alongside content. Readers can block ads for 24 hours by clicking the "hide ads" button. Those who are registered and logged in do not see ads, unless it is an external video provider.


Prior to adopting the Creative Commons license, wikiHow had been criticized for initial content policies that sought to make a profit from volunteer contributors. The site has also been criticized about the reliability of articles written by non-experts, such as "How to stop cutting yourself", or the relevance of articles written about such obscure subjects as "How to taste dark chocolate".

As wikiHow continued to grow, it began to attract more media
News media
The news media are those elements of the mass media that focus on delivering news to the general public or a target public.These include print media , broadcast news , and more recently the Internet .-Etymology:A medium is a carrier of something...

 attention. Columnist
A columnist is a journalist who writes for publication in a series, creating an article that usually offers commentary and opinions. Columns appear in newspapers, magazines and other publications, including blogs....

 Mark Patinkin
Mark Patinkin
Mark Patinkin is an author and nationally-syndicated columnist for the Providence Journal. He is a graduate of Middlebury College. He was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for international reporting, and he has won three New England Emmy awards for television commentaries. He is also the author of...

 from the Providence Journal
The Providence Journal
The Providence Journal, nicknamed the ProJo, is a daily newspaper serving the metropolitan area of Providence, Rhode Island and is the largest newspaper in Rhode Island. The newspaper, first published in 1829 and the oldest continuously-published daily newspaper in the United States, was purchased...

 wrote an article about wikiHow in late 2009, commenting that he found many interesting articles on a variety of different subjects. In the same article, he said [regarding some of the article topics]:

Some were too dicey, like How to Mount a Unicycle. Others had daunting titles: How to Change a Partition Size Using Easeus Partition Manager. Some were too long, like How to Be Organized. Others too obscure: How to Care for Sea Monkeys. Some too hard: How to Play a Glissando on a Wind Instrument. Others I didn’t want to know about, like How to Cook a Snake. Some simply grossed me out: How to Cure a Cat of Constipation. Others demoralized me: How to Check out a Library Book. Do people no longer know?

External links

  •עמוד-ראשי (Hebrew wikiHow)
The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.