The Real Life Superheroes Wiki is an online Wiki about Real Life Superheroes. RLSH was chosen as the subdomain of the Wiki, which is hosted on Wikia.com, to keep its URL as short as possible. RLSH is also the common acronym in use to refer to Real Life Superheroes. This page will describe the nature of the Wiki, the origins and history as well as any other information relevant to the Wiki itself.
The Wiki attempts to catalog members of the RLSH community in a directory while maintaining an independent and neutral point of view. Editorially, this means language will be as professional and neutral as possible while tendencies to self-aggrandize or promote a specific person or organization or agenda will be avoided as much as possible. This means terms used to label the RLSH will be as generic to avoid any possible connotations of a derogatory nature while simultaneously avoiding the unnecessary inflation of egos.
Since this is a Wiki compiling the information of real people, the majority of whom are currently still living, albeit under personas likely created to conceal their legal identity or protect their privacy, there are security concerns of vandalism and inaccuracy of data. However, the Wiki will try to provide vigorous oversight to avoid the worst of these issues. The role of the Wiki editor is to balance the need for accurate data as well as to respect the need for privacy and security concerns for the RLSH community.
Therefore, this Wiki aims to:
- Provide as much accurate information as possible on the RLSH.
- Allow for participation whether through direct contribution of new data or editing existing data without restriction as much as possible.
- Maintain its own strict neutrality independent of the RLSH.
This Wiki does not exist as a means for RLSH to promote themselves to the media or to raise their profile.
The RLSH Wiki was first conceived of by Kainee on February 9, 2010. An article posted on one of Kainee's favorite blogs prompted Kainee to do a web search for the term, "real life superhero," in search for more information. At that point in time, information on the RLSH community was not accessible in an easily digestible format and much of the sources of information were splintered off into various news articles and individual sites.
Many of the sites on RLSH were targeted at existing RLSH or those looking to become RLSH and were not conducive to informing and retaining an audience of a casual nature. In fact, the only website at that point in time to attempt to provide a listing of the RLSH out there was the World Superhero Registry, which had an outdated web design aesthetic and information with editorial control only accessible to the webmaster who was unavailable. The World Superhero Registry's setup made it difficult for it to be updated in a timely fashion due to the bottleneck caused by the requirement of having the webmaster edit the page in order to correct outdated information or add new profiles.
Creating entries for RLSH on Wikipedia was also not a feasible option either as other than a handful of figures in the RLSH movement and a general overview of the RLSH, more detailed information on the RLSH movement was not considered noteworthy enough to satisfy Wikipedia's notability policy due to Wikipedia's more general focus as an encyclopedia and pages created for individual RLSH would eventually get deleted as being too specific in focus for Wikipedia.
Thus, Kainee created this Wiki to serve as a specialized encyclopedia with a focus on RLSH and would be a better fit for cataloging minutiae on the RLSH, including individual members or groups. Having previous experience with website creation and administration as well as familiarity with a variety of the wikifarms available online, Kainee created the Real Life Superhero Wiki to be hosted on Wikia.com. Wikia was chosen as the hosting wikifarm due to the large number of successful wiki sites it hosts along with the connected community of users and editors, allowing for the possibility of attracting contributors from a ready pool of talent once a critical mass of articles was accumulated.
However, the Wiki was slow to grow due to the length of time needed to research and compile data from the various RLSH community sites and various media reports. There was also no growth in users as active promotion of the RLSH Wiki was avoided while the initial infrastructure of the Wiki was still being established. As a consequence, there was no support from the RLSH community due to a lack of awareness of the presence of the RLSH Wiki. This was due to a wish to mitigate the observer-expectancy effect and avoid compromising the independent point of view the RLSH Wiki was meant to have.
In the same year of the creation of the RLSH Wiki, Peter Tangen began collaborating with the RLSH community on the Real Life Superhero Project. The Project eventually was hosted on RealLifeSuperheroes.com and went live in April 2010. The site provided profiles of the RLSH photographed along with its own wiki for its forum members to build upon. RealLifeSuperheroes.com quickly became the central hub for the RLSH community. As the Real Life Superhero Project was larger in scale and was highly professional in web design quality, it served as both an entry point into the RLSH world for a general audience as well as a valuable educational tool for visitors looking to indulge their curiosity. It was then concluded with the existence of reallifesuperheroes.com and its active support by RLSH that there was no need for the RLSH wiki to expand. Thus, active editing of the RLSH Wiki by Kainee stopped in the fall of 2010 and she went into hiatus for 2 years though the Wiki never went down.
In August 2012, Kainee went out of hiatus after editing activity by a variety of editors suddenly commenced. It was then discovered that the Real Life Super Hero Project at RealLifeSuperheroes.com was no longer available due to issues with its host. With the loss of RealLifeSuperheroes.com, there was no longer a centralized repository of information on RLSH readily accessible to the average audience anymore. Thus, active editing on the RLSH Wiki by Kainee resumed. Although the Real Life Super Hero Project was soon able to resume service in September 2012, this wiki will still endeavor to act as an encyclopedia for the RLSH movement, as an alternate and independent record.
A blog by freelance writer Tea Krulos that catalogs the RLSH he personally interviews and discusses various news stories and other events in the RLSH community.
The site hosting the Real Life Super Hero Project with a professional and pleasing site design, it also serves as a promotional hub for the concept of RLSH allowing for an easy avenue for individual RLSH featured to gain publicity and press attention.
RLSH.org is a portal site for the RLSH community and is a successor to RealLifeSuperheroes.com. The Archives are a subdomain site that captures the various news stories on RLSH in the mainstream media before the content is no longer freely available online and hosts various editorials as written by RLSHs for the community.
The first site to attempt to create a registry of all the RLSH out there, there have been no signs of activity after 2010. The site owners allegedly created the Registry in order to try to make a profit off the RLSH community and gained a reputation of being a scam site for many RLSH. It is a site notable for existing as an online snapshot in time of the few RLSH out there as well as being the inspriation for this Wiki.