Google strategy

As I've talked about endlessly, I'm working on building up our Google rank. The redirect thing is working well so far, and I'm looking for some more juice.

Right now, when you search for "the muppets" on Google, this page comes up above the main page. Ideally, we'd like the main page to come up -- we want people to know that when you're looking for Muppets, you go to Muppet Wiki.

I'd like to move this content to a different page, and make "Muppet" and "The Muppets" into redirects to the main page. I think that would give us all kinds of good Google love.

Is there somewhere else we can put this content? It's good stuff, but I don't think it's good enough to take such valuable real estate. What do folks think? -- Danny (talk) 00:17, 29 July 2008 (UTC)

Maybe parts of this could be spliced into Jim's article, or into the article about Muppets Inc., and the various later names for the company. -- Ken (talk) 03:36, 29 July 2008 (UTC)
I think we need a page about what "The Muppets" are... even if the information could be tucked into other articles. In theory I could see making this "Jim Henson's Muppets", but as a visitor I think I'd be pretty frustrated if I searched for "The Muppets" and got taken back to the front page of the wiki.... I've had this happen on some other wikis (I search for the subject and end up on the main page) and it drives me crazy. The only compromise I can think of is a prominent link back from the main page to this information, and it's not a great one. I'm all for google-juicing but not at the expense of user experience. Do you have any sort of stats on what people search for? -- Wendy (talk) 04:13, 29 July 2008 (UTC)
Yup, I have stats on that. In the last three months, there hasn't been a single search for the word "muppet" or "muppets". There's been thousands of searches - the most common is "Sesame Street episodes", followed by a bunch of popular characters -- Elmo, Kermit, Beaker, Animal, Grover. Nobody searches for "muppets".
One option is to move the content on this page to the bottom of the main page. That would actually help with Google juice, too -- it would be nice to have all the TV show and company names on the main page. Would that work? -- Danny (talk) 06:39, 29 July 2008 (UTC)
That might be interesting to try. I was thinking getting rid of the page all together might cause problems, but that suggestion would be an interesting thing to experiment with.
How often doea the "Muppets" page get viewed? --Justin 16:10, 29 July 2008 (UTC)
On Special:Mostpopulararticles, "The Muppets" is #343 -- which is pretty pathetic, considering that Special:Mostlinked says that it's the #33 most-linked article. It's highly linked, but seldom-clicked and never searched. -- Danny (talk) 17:55, 29 July 2008 (UTC)
I'd like to make this change... Can I get an amen or a stop sign? -- Danny (talk) 07:14, 30 July 2008 (UTC)
This has never been a favorite page of mine anyway. I like the idea of moving it all to the main page, though I don't know how the extra text would fit. There's also the images, not the most fascinating, but might be worth sticking them in a gallery somewhere (or for that matter, moving them to "Marionette and Puppet," which is the real article on how the Muppet name supposedly was chosen. Moving to the main page, one also has no need for the see alsos, since all the navigation tools are right there and there's no confusion. I'd kind of like to see a test first or something, but in theory, I'm in favor of it. As the earlier discussion showed, the page has been overlinked, but isn't generally visited or the most useful (having it on the main page would in fact increase usefulness and visibility, even if one has to scroll down; I'm just a little concerned about what the layout would look like and if it would make the main page too text heavy and even off-putting). -- Andrew Leal (talk) 07:22, 30 July 2008 (UTC)
Okay, cool. I'll do the redirects, and then create a sandbox page so we can make sure the main page looks okay before we make the change live. -- Danny (talk) 15:14, 30 July 2008 (UTC)

Linking the Muppets

This is a minor issue, but something that's niggled at me for awhile. I think we've had a tendency to overlink to The Muppets. The article itself is pretty slim, just discussing the origin of the name and the corporate ownership; it's not a detailed species/pattern article like Anything Muppets, Fraggles, Doozers, or Whatnots. So it makes sense to link when discussing it in those kinds of contexts ("Jim Henson created the Muppets; "The Muppets are currently owned by...") or when discussing variety shows and other guest appearances where the collective term was used ("The Muppets appeared on Dick Cavett's"), or when dealing with relevant Muppet Mentions, and so on. But I don't think we need to link the phrase every time it occurs, and frankly, it's at the point where the blue link is annoying me. I'm thinking of sentences like this: "A crowd of background Muppets mill near the theater," "A Muppet dog appears," "Fozzie joins the other Muppets on the bus," and so on. I'd like to just take it out in all situations like that. What do others think? -- Andrew Leal (talk) 22:16, 13 February 2008 (UTC)

I agree, I have the same niggles. -- Danny (talk) 00:49, 14 February 2008 (UTC)
I was also thinking about this the other day when I was working on some record articles. Can we come up with a guideline for when to link it, and when not to, building on what was already mentioned above? -- Ken (talk) 02:27, 14 February 2008 (UTC)
If nothing else, we should keep the links on anything that might be deemed a basic, common topic. Anything that is likely to be read "drive-by visitors", people who find a particular page on Google, but don't stick around too long after that. Much of the traffic to the site is to these very basic, common knowledge topics, and so if we don't make it easy for them to click around, they're unlikely to stick around too long. -- Zanimum 19:34, 14 February 2008 (UTC)
I confess, I don't know what you're talking about, Nick. It's easy for people to click around, and being more conservative in our linking in this instance isn't going to drive anyone away. I still don't see a reason to link to it every time the word "Muppet" occurs (saving it for occasions where it's relevant and useful to link to the article, as I mentioned above). This is a Muppet Wiki, so the phrase occurs a lot. I've reached a point where I've tried replacing the term with "characters" in articles where that's all it's used for (see "Night Life" or "Rowlf's Poetry Corner"), since I find the blue link randomly inserted in a sentence where the phrase is just there as an adjective or in sentences like "Kermit, Fozzie, and the other Muppets go to a party" to be immensely distracting. Typing in "Muppets" automatically redirects there, making it easy for anyone to find the page, so I'm not buying your argument in the least. Oh, and "The Muppets" isn't anywhere in that list you linked to, so clearly the abundance of links isn't increasing clicks to that page. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 19:56, 14 February 2008 (UTC)
I think an important consideration is whether that's an informative click or not. The article on The Muppets is pretty short, and it's all about the word itself -- who uses it, and how it's used.
So to use the "Night Life" article as an example, the sentence is: "Night Life is performed by Dr. Teeth and The Electric Mayhem on top of the Happiness Hotel bus as the Muppets travel to the Dubonnet Club in The Great Muppet Caper."
In that instance, I'm not sure that a reader clicking on the word "Muppets" would expect to see a discussion of how the word is used. The word in that sentence refers to the specific group of characters traveling to the Dubonnet Club -- Kermit, Piggy, etc. Personally, I don't think that's an informative click. -- Danny (talk) 20:08, 14 February 2008 (UTC)
I wonder if there could be a way to add more to the article that isn't just about the word "Muppets" without being reduntant compared to other articles (like The Muppet Show, Muppets vs Creatures, maybe Jim Henson, The Jim Henson Company, and The Walt Disney Company, etc.). --Minor muppetz 02:49, 21 February 2008 (UTC)
Yeah. There's probably a way to make it slightly more interesting, but again, we're a Muppet Wiki, so the Wiki as a whole defines and discusses the Muppets as characters, franchise, and so on. The Wikipedia article lists some major characters and history and so on, but we have Category:Muppet Characters, Category:Muppet Movies, and so on, so we don't really need an additional list, and even then, I don't think it would justify linking to it for sentences like those discussed, i.e. "The other Muppets join Kermit on a cruise" and so on. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 02:55, 21 February 2008 (UTC)

Here's a possible guideline for how to link to the Muppets, using examples where it's currently being linked.

It's appropriate to link from sentences that talk about "the Muppets" as a whole, or sentences that use "the Muppets" to refer to both Sesame Street and Muppet Show characters.

  • Muppet Wiki: "Muppet Wiki is a collaborative encyclopedia for everything related to Jim Henson and the Muppets."
  • Jim Henson: "Jim Henson was the creator of the Muppets."
  • Lily Tomlin: "Tomlin has appeared with the Muppets frequently."

We shouldn't use it when we're referring to an individual Muppet or a small group of Muppets.

  • Uncle Deadly: "One by one, the Muppets tell Kermit that they have seen a phantom."
  • Dr. Bunsen Honeydew: "In Muppets From Space, Bunsen invents a number of devices for the Muppets to use when they rescue Gonzo."
  • Something For Everyone: "Something For Everyone" is a song performed by Kermit the Frog, Marlo Thomas and the Muppets."

We shouldn't use it when "Muppet" is used as an adjective.

  • Muppet keys: "A series of four Muppet keys was released in 2007."
  • Vicki: "She greatly admires Kermit's leadership skills and the Muppet legacy."

Would that work? -- Danny (talk) 16:36, 21 February 2008 (UTC)

That all makes sense to me. In cases where Muppet is used as an adjective in describing the work of crew members, "So and so worked on several Muppet projects," I'm fine with it, though I don't think we need to necessarily link it if we find a page where it isn't. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 17:19, 21 February 2008 (UTC)
What about cases where a track listing on an album page mentions "The Muppets" as the singers of songs? --Minor muppetz 01:41, 23 February 2008 (UTC)
I would say no to that one, because it's referring to a specific group of Muppets. -- Danny (talk) 02:34, 23 February 2008 (UTC)

Jim Henson's Sesame Street Muppets

Do any of us know when the "Jim Henson's Sesame Street Muppets" credit began being used on Sesame Street or related merchandise? I think it might be interesting to note this on this page, but I don't know when it started. According to the credit crawls on Old School Volume 1, the first season credits read "Puppets by the Muppets", and starting in the second season, the credits read "Puppets by Jim Henson's Muppets". The credits for Christmas Eve on Sesame Street also refer to them solely as "Jim Henson's Muppets", rather than "Jim Henson's Sesame Street Muppets". I know that the "Jim Henson's Sesame Street Muppets" credit started being used by the mid-1980s, if not earlier. I'm not too sure whetehr this credit was used in books or albums before it was used on the show, but it would be interesting to figure out and list when they were first credited as "Jim Henson's Sesame Street Muppets", especially since Sesame Street is the only television sereis where The Muppets are credited with their series title alongside the word "Muppets" (Fraggle Rock never had a "Starring Jim Hensons Fraggle Rock Muppets" credit, for example). --Minor muppetz 01:10, 9 November 2006 (UTC)

Does it matter? I enjoy credits as much as the next person, but I don't really see what this demonstrates. It indicates a distinction drawn between Sesame Street Muppets and Muppet Show Muppets, but little else, and I don't see how pinpointing a specific year would help in anyway. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 01:13, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
Well, it could add an additional note to the individual season page where that credit was added, but then that should be noted on the page for that season more than here. Here, the date could be listed for historical sake. --Minor muppetz 01:21, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
I seem to recall that they were called just Jim Henson’s Muppets on Sesame Street 1969–1990, but I have to check my various books. I have another question, though. Since the word “Muppet,” etc., was sold to Disney, I don’t ever seeing that word in association with Sesame Street since then, with the exception of the added legal information on the end of the episodes on the Old School DVDs, which say “Muppet™ is a trademark of Muppets Holding Company LLC.” Can anyone corroborate this? Peace —MuzikJunky 05:42, 12 January 2008 (UTC)
Sesame Street still retains the right to use the term for the Sesame Street Muppets. See the end credits of any Sesame production over the past few years for this. —Scott (talk) 05:48, 12 January 2008 (UTC)
I looked at my copy of Cookie Monster and the Cookie Tree (1977), and it does indeed say Featuring Jim Henson's Muppets on the cover and copyright for the Muppets attributed to Muppets Inc. Peace. —MuzikJunky 02:56, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

Shows with Muppet credits

I've been thinking, do any of you think that it might be a good idea to make a list of Henson productions that aren't connected to The Muppet Show that feature a credit for "Jim Henson's Muppets"? For example, list Sesame Street, Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas, Fraggle Rock, and others that referred to it's characters as Muppets in the credits, but weren't sequels or follow-ups to The Muppet Show (not counting the fact that Kermit the Frog or another Muppet Show character made an appearance)? A general note could be made for television shows like Sesame Street, which had many specials and merchandise that featured a "Jim Henson's Muppets" (or, in the case of Sesame Street, "Jim Henson's Sesame Street Muppets")credit. --Minor muppetz 14:05, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

I'm really not following you. Are you trying to emphasize shows that used "Jim Henson's" as an adjective or the Muppet term in general? Since every series under Category:Muppet TV Shows (save Mother Goose Stories and The Ghost of Faffner Hall) used either "Jim Henson's Muppets," "Muppet Performers," and/or "The Muppet Workshop," and the same goes for Category:Muppet Specials. Even Big Bag uses "Jim Henson's Muppets." What would such a list prove or demonstrate? How would it prove useful to researchers? This isn't to sound discouraging, but I'm unclear what you're trying to accomplish. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 15:33, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
I am talking about shows that used the term "Muppets" in the credits, as in "Starring Jim Henson's Muppets", but were not directly related to The Muppet Show (like how The Muppet Movie and A Muppet Family Christmas are, for example), aside from the fact that Kermit or another Muppet Show Muppet might have made an appearance, perhaps as a cameo or a narrarator. I'm not really talking about what productions used terms like "Muppet Performers" or "Muppet Workshop". Of course, when thinking about this, I do feel unsure about whether to include variety shows that used this credit when the Muppets made guest appearances. Oddly enough, the shows that are follow-ups to The Muppet Show (the MuppeTelevision segments of The Jim Henson Hour, Muppet Babies, and Muppets Tonight), as well as the movies and most specials, did not have a "Starring Jim Henson's Muppets" credit. --Minor muppetz 19:19, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
I still don't get the point. What does it prove that Big Bag mentions "Jim Henson's Muppets" and Dog City doesn't? I'm just not seeing the usefulness. Andrew Leal (talk) 19:56, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
I think I get it. It's begging the question, When do we introduce the characters as "Muppets" and when don't we? It helps to think of the article as if it's talking about the word, "Muppet", rather than a physical group of furry creatures.
I could see this as maybe a seperate article, but I'm not sure it belongs in The Muppets article. That's not what new people would be looking to know if they came here. -- Joe (talk) 20:18, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
But that's not the only criteria for if a character is a "Muppet." Leaving out our own Muppets vs Creatures debate, if "Muppet Workshop," "Muppet Performers," or in official material, Henson called the character's Muppets, that's just as significant as whether or not a title card happened to use the term "Starring Jim Henson's Muppets" (which is what Michael wants to focus solely on). The fact that the term was used less than consistently both within Henson's lifetime and afterwards seems to me to show it's unreliability. It's interesting as a trivia note, sure. Although I guess maybe at this point, we'd need to see how Michael would set up such a list before debating further. -- Andrew Leal (talk) 20:41, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Right, I'm not debating the definition of "Muppet." But I agree that it couldn't hurt to have some purely trivial articles like this on the wiki. Kinda like a "Hey, didja know that so-and-so movie said this, but so-and-so TV show didn't?" But yeah, it all comes down to how Michael wants to organize something like that, because I sure don't know how. -- Joe (talk) 21:02, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
I was thinking of having a list of productions listed. It may be too much to list products, but at least television series and specials that had the Muppets listed in the credits in the way that an actor or music group might be listed in a list. For series that had a "Starring Jim Henson's Muppets"-type credit, perhaps a note that this credit was use din related merchandise might be good. I have debated over whetehr to use every Sesame Street special and movie that had a credit saying "Starring Jim Henson's Sesame Street Muppets" or "Featuring the Muppets of Sesame Street" or something like that. --Minor muppetz 22:35, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
I vote no. This idea seems more obsessive and weird than I'm comfortable with. Michael, I think you're striking out on this one. Try something else. -- Danny (talk) 22:58, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Okay, I'll take out the talk box, and we can all just forget about this. --Minor muppetz 02:23, 10 August 2006 (UTC)
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