Stewart wrote Wikipatterns in 2008 to share practical, proven advice for guiding adoption of new technology. The book is based on his experience guiding product development of Atlassian’s popular Confluence collaboration platform, and advising the company’s customers, including Airbus, Bank of America, Fidelity Investments, HSBC, MBF Insurance, Pixar, and Thales Group on wiki adoption for collaboration and customer communities. He also increased the company’s connections with customer and developer communities by speaking at industry events, helped start the Atlassian Blog, and published 94 articles over 18 months to help build the voice of the brand.


Dedication, Preface, and Acknowledgements
1. Grassroots is Best
2. Your Wiki Isn’t (Necessarily) Wikipedia
3. What’s Five Minutes Really Worth?
4. 11 Steps to a Successful Pilot
5. Large-Scale Adoption
6. Prevent (or Minimize) Obstacles
7. Inspirational Bull****
Questions & Answers

Patterns & Anti-Patterns

Drawing from A Pattern Language, the architecture and urban design book by Christopher Alexander, Sara Ishikawa, and Murray Silverstein, the patterns and anti-patterns in Wikipatterns enable you to build an enduring, useful space for collaboration, whether your team is in the same room or spread around the world.

  • 90-9-1 – Online participation generally follows a 90-9-1 ratio of readers to contributors
  • Acknowledge – Empower peer recognition and encourage its use
  • Ambassador – Person who helps adoption through their endorsement and consistent promotion
  • BarnRaising – Designated time to build structure, seed content, and set norms
  • BlankPage – Seed new pages with structure or content to guide others
  • Bully – Someone who goes too far in pushing people to use the wiki
  • Champion – Provides guidance, reduces obstacles, and is essential to the success of adoption
  • Charter – Guidelines for collaboration should be created at the start of technology adoption
  • Confluence is content collaboration software that changes how modern teams work

    Looking for a great collaboration platform? I recommend Confluence, by Atlassian

  • FAQ – Scaffold that enables a group to build information and share answers
  • Gnome – Performs small edits on a wiki to continually improve its overall quality
  • IntentionalError – Make some mistakes for others to find and fix, thus getting them used to editing
  • Invitation – Good way to encourage non-early adopters to get involved
  • Magnet – Entice people to visit the wiki by exclusively posting essential information
  • Patron – Leader who confers legitimacy that can increase the likelihood of success
  • Sandbox – “Practice” page that may inadvertently hinder adoption
  • Scaffold – Give people a place to start by “framing” the content that should be added to a new page
  • Spectator – Someone who consumes wiki content but does not contribute to it
  • Troll – Provokes the community instead of focusing criticism on specific procedural or functional issues
  • Viral – Use spreads as people encourage colleagues to use the wiki

I love it when this happens, a blog I’ve read for ages (devoured some would say) gets published in book format. Needless to say my copy is already ordered.” – Gordon McLean