Constructed Worlds:Comparison of Miraheze and Fandom
This is an essay.
It contains the advice or opinions of one or more Constructed Worlds Wiki contributors. This page is not an encyclopedia article, nor is it one of Constructed Worlds' policies or guidelines, as it has not been thoroughly vetted by the community. Some essays represent widespread norms; others only represent minority viewpoints.
The following table compares general information between the wiki hosting services of Miraheze and Fandom. It also compares the Constructed Worlds Wiki on Miraheze and the Constructed Worlds Wiki on Fandom, both of which are considered part of one unified community.
Comparison of wiki farms
|Accounts||Miraheze uses CentralAuth as its login system. All Miraheze accounts are global and shared across all wikis. Anyone can see a user's global contributions through Special:CentralAuth.||FANDOM uses its own custom login system. All accounts on FANDOM are shared across all wikis. Users can see which wikis they've contributed to at Community Central.|
|Core principles||Miraheze is a free wiki hosting service with no advertisements. Miraheze allows all types of wikis to be hosted on its platform, provided that they abide by the Content Policy. Miraheze is operated by Miraheze, Ltd., a non-profit.||FANDOM (formerly known as Wikia) is a wiki hosting service which offers free wiki hosting with advertisements. FANDOM allows all types of wikis to be created on their platform but mainly focuses towards entertainment wikis. FANDOM is operated by FANDOM, Inc., a for-profit business.||The absence of any advertising on Miraheze allows users on the Constructed Worlds Wiki to enjoy the wiki without any obtrusive ad interface and without the need to install an adblock plugin on their browser.|
|Editing||Miraheze offers three editors: VisualEditor, the Source Editor, and the 2010 WikiEditor.||Fandom offers three editors: VisualEditor, a source editor, and the 2010 WikiEditor.|
|Extensions||Miraheze offers 51 extensions by default, and around 220 extensions that can be enabled via ManageWiki. Extensions may be requested and must be reviewed by Site Reliability Engineering first before installation. Extensions are installed after a thorough security review has been conducted on the extension and it is confirmed that the extension is compatible with our setup.||Fandom offers 27 extensions by default, and around 11 extensions upon request. Extensions may be requested and must be reviewed by FANDOM's Engineering Team who estimates it may take months for a review to finish. FANDOM rejects most extension requests due to the fact that many extensions must be rewritten to accommodate their large setup.||The number of extensions offered by Miraheze as well as the flexibility it allows local wiki administration to add or remove extensions has allowed the Constructed Worlds Wiki to add features not otherwise available on Fandom.|
|Namespaces||Miraheze offers the standard 16 namespaces and the wiki-style forum namespaces, and allows for custom namespaces to be created using ManageWiki. There is no limit to the number of custom namespaces that can be created.||Fandom offers the standard 16 editable namespaces that ship with MediaWiki by default, along with the "Forum" and "Forum talk" namespace for wiki-style forums. Custom namespaces can be requested and are usually limited to a maximum of three.|
|Skins||Miraheze offers 6 default skins but allows local administrators to enable more on their wikis. Local wiki administrators may customize their wiki's appearance freely.||Fandom offers one skin for desktop, FandomDesktop, and one for mobile, called FandomMobile. Local wiki administrators may customize their wiki's appearance with the skin in accordance with FANDOM's Customization policy.||Miraheze includes Vector (the skin used by Wikipedia) and Cosmos (a skin very similar to Fandom's default skin)|
|SEO||Miraheze does not have any dedicated SEO team. Miraheze applies a few techniques and offers users tools to help in their SEO endeavors, including access to the Google Search Console, but does not officially offer any dedicated SEO support. Some community members may step in to assist.||FANDOM has a team that is dedicated to SEO and as a result, generally fares well on search engines. FANDOM applies specific SEO techniques on all their wikis to ensure they have a good search engine ranking, including specific tweaks to skins and page formats.||On Miraheze, it is more difficult to perform well on search engine ranking. As a result, it may be harder for similarly titled articles on the Constructed Worlds Wiki Miraheze to appear in comparison to those hosted on Fandom.|
|Software||Miraheze uses MediaWiki 1.37.2 (9834e31) and has committed itself to updating to the latest MediaWiki version as soon as possible following software testing. Miraheze offers many extensions, all of which are open-sourced extensions.||FANDOM uses MediaWiki 1.33.3 and has said that they intend on continuing to upgrade their MediaWiki version when possible. However, in the coming weeks, FANDOM will be updating the MediaWiki software to 1.37. FANDOM uses the Long-term support (LTS) branch of MediaWiki and deploys new versions of MediaWiki LTS once testing of new versions concludes. FANDOM has many proprietary extensions and features, many of which are currently closed-source. FANDOM employs these extensions to curate a uniformed look across all wikis, allowing local wiki administrators to tweak their wikis within their predefined mold.||Since Miraheze uses the latest MediaWiki version, it is generally easy to copy-and-paste templates and modules from Wikipedia, which allows for backwards compatibility and access to a wider range of templates that will not code-break.|
|System messages||Miraheze allows wiki administrators to edit the MediaWiki namespace freely by default. No change has to be reviewed by Miraheze Stewards or Site Reliability Engineering.||Fandom allows wiki administrators the editing of a select number of MediaWiki namespace pages. Changes to any other system message must be reviewed by FANDOM Staff.|
|Staff||Miraheze does not employ any full-time staff and instead is run by volunteers. Some of these volunteers focus on the technical, behind-the-scenes operations of the wiki farm and generally do not involve themselves in on-wiki issues. Stewards generally fulfill many of the roles that the Fandom Community Team takes on; they are also unpaid and are elected by the community. Because Miraheze is a non-profit, Miraheze allows wikis to migrate away from the platform and will close a wiki if that is the consensus of the community.||Fandom employs full-time paid staff that are not elected by the Fandom community. Officially, staff only intervene with local wiki communities in certain circumstances, such as ToU violations, but are known to take actions outside of that scope, including forcibly enabling extensions without community input, changing URLs for SEO purposes without notification, and removing local wiki administrators that object to forced changes. Wiki communities do not hold all the power over their wikis; if they migrate, cannot close their old wiki and may only link to the fork for 2 weeks before having to revert everything back to how it was. Fandom Staff may appoint new administrators after removing old ones if a wiki community migrates.|
|View permission||Miraheze offers a private wiki option and allows for a "page whitelist" which allows certain pages to be public in a private wiki, while the other pages are still private.||Fandom doesn't allow for private wikis, all wikis must be public.|
|InstantCommons?||No||Yes||With InstantCommons, any file which exists on Wikimedia Commons is automatically available for use (under the same filename) on Miraheze. On Fandom, only files which exist on a local wiki are available, while all other files, including those on Wikimedia Commons, must be uploaded manually.|