Wikidata:Tours/Ranks

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Welcome to the Ranks Tour[edit]

Wikidata

Welcome back! In this tour, you’ll learn about adding ranks to statements.

Please note that the page in the background is only a replica of a real page—you can think of it as a sandbox for you to play in and try new things. Your changes won't appear on Wikidata so there's no need to worry while making edits in this space. Let's get started!

Ranking values[edit]

In previous tours you learned about the different ways that editors can further describe data stored about an item in a statement. Specifically, both qualifiers and references can be added to statement and allow Wikidata to store multiple values for the same property.

While all values for a statement may be valid and should therefore be retained on item pages, ranks provide a mechanism for evaluating the multiple values of a statement, and help users to easily differentiate between the multiple values of a statement.

Let’s revisit our item page for Earth now and take a closer look at our Statements section.

Changing Values[edit]

In the Qualifiers' tour, you added a population value about the planet and qualified it with a point of time to reflect the fact that the world's population is constantly in flux.

You learned how it's possible to represent a changing population, but not why you should bother doing so.

Multiple Values[edit]

You may well question the point of adding statements to Wikidata that have values which will inevitably change, just like the world's population.

But change is all around us—for example, the boundaries of countries can move, politicians can become the directors of companies after their time in public office, and legislation can be overturned.

Within a large knowledge base, it's still important to record the previous values of items. These records—in the form of statements with multiple values—help us to better understand the world, see patterns and relationships, and make connections and predictions based on what we already know.

Ranks[edit]

In order to differentiate between the multiple values of a statement, Wikidata provides a way of evaluating the currency and accuracy of a given value. These evaluations are called ranks.

There are three types of ranks in Wikidata: normal, preferred, and deprecated.

Normal ranks[edit]

A normal rank is used for a value that contains correct information but is not the most up-to-date or relevant information about an item.

For example, an item page for a politician may list all positions and titles held over the course of a political career; positions held in the past by the politician (who is currently the mayor of a city) should be given the normal rank.

The normal rank is also the default rank for all statements.

Preferred ranks[edit]

A preferred rank is used for a value with the most important and most recent information about an item.

For example, an item page for a city may list all of its mayors; the current mayor would receive the preferred rank.

Deprecated ranks[edit]

A deprecated rank is used for a value that contains information that may not be considered reliable or is known to include errors.

For example, an item of a city may feature an incorrect population figure that was published in a historic document. The statement is not wrong as the figure is accurate according to the (erroneous) historic document, however because it known to contain errors it should receive the deprecated rank.

More on ranks[edit]

Ranks are applied to statements that have more than one value per property.

It's also possible to have any number of statements with each rank, i.e. more than one value can be assigned the preferred rank.

Got it? Good. Now let's put this new understanding to use.

Ranks[edit]

Imagine it's the year 2050 and robots are everywhere!

For the first time ever, a team of international scientists have programmed hundreds of thousands of robots to count everyone on Earth for the official population census. After publishing the results, the scientists realize the robots were programmed incorrectly, resulting in all people who own a robot being counted twice!

Choose which of the following is an example of a deprecated rank for a statement about Earth's population (P1082)?

13 billion (point of time: 2050, reference: robot census)
9 billion (point of time: 2045, reference United Nations Population Fund estimate)
5 billion (point of time: 1987, reference: United Nations Population Fund estimate)

Ranks[edit]

Choose which of the following is an example of a deprecated rank for a statement about Earth's population (P1082)?

13 billion (point of time: 2050, reference: robot census)
9 billion (point of time: 2045, reference United Nations Population Fund estimate)
5 billion (point of time: 1987, reference: United Nations Population Fund estimate)

13 billion is given a deprecated rank because even though it has a source to back up the value, the source contains information that is known to include errors.

In case you're wondering, the 9 billion value for 2045 should be given a preferred rank because it's the most up to the date value for 2050. 5 billion would be given a normal rank because it was correct but at a certain point in time (1987) that is no longer relevant.

Adding a rank[edit]

Let's now add our first rank to the Earth item page!

Why don't we give our population value a preferred rank? First, Click on [edit].

Adding a rank[edit]

Now click on the ranking feature.

After clicking, you'll be provided with the three possible options for ranking. Once you've made your selection, click [save].

Congratulations[edit]

Congratulations! You've completed the Ranks Tour!
Want to keep editing? If you're ready to leave the sandbox and edit on the real site, the links below will get you started:

Edit a random item

Want to keep learning? Click here (add link) to go to the next or here to return to the tours portal.

Still have questions? Talk to someone over live chat on IRC #wikidataconnect or check out the following help pages:

Help:Statements
Help:Ranking
The Wikidata glossary
Project chat, for discussing any and all aspects of Wikidata