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When creating or editing articles, it's best to be mindful of the source of the information you are using. Different kinds of sources should be treated differently in different kinds of articles.

Canon, Official, and Credible Sources

Canon

The "canon" is the body of work which constitutes the accepted official events and items of the show's world. The term "canon" originally referred to an officially sanctioned body of church laws and scriptures, and was used to distinguish from works which were not recognized by the church, like the Gospel of Thomas. The same idea applies to the notion of "canon" in fandoms: it distinguishes information that is established as being "true" in the world of the show from information which has been reported by other sources but not confirmed.

For Heroes, the only official canon source is actual broadcast episodes. Any information that does not appear on screen is not considered part of the Heroes canon.

Near-Canon

Webisodes

The Webisodes, which are written and produced by the show's writing staff, are reliable non-canon source.

Graphic Novels

The Graphic Novels, which are also written and produced alongside each episode by the show's writing staff, are reliable non-canon source. Still, it's technically possible that the writers could at any point contradict information from the graphic novels in a broadcast episode. When using information from a graphic novel, be sure to clearly label it as coming from a graphic novel. This will make it easier for readers unfamiliar with the graphic novels to identify the source of any information.

Heroes Evolutions

Information from the Heroes Evolutions experience is similar to the graphic novels in that it supplements information from the episodes. However, some Heroes Evolutions information is contradicted by canon information from the episodes (for example, some of the information from the interactive map contradicts the aired version of the list). Additionally, the timeline of the Heroes Evolutions information doesn't match the canon timeline. Like graphic novels, it's important to label all information from Heroes Evolutions as coming from Heroes Evolutions. Information from Heroes Evolutions which contradicts canon material should be confined to notes sections and the contradiction should be noted.

Official Sources

Some non-canon information comes from the creators and broadcasters of the show. Such official sources are generally more reliable than unofficial sources, such as fans, entertainment media, and bloggers. Official sources include things like Greg Beeman's blog, the NBC.com website, comicbookresources's Behind the Eclipse series, and information from Heroes Evolutions. Other official sources include interviews with the show's creators.

Credible Sources

A credible source is a source that, while not a part of canon, is generally believed to be reliable. Credible sources are usually official sources, but not all official sources are credible. For example, the photo captions on NBC.com, while official, have been proven unreliable on several occasions. Some photos are from scenes which were not included in broadcast episodes, and one caption even mistakenly stated that D.L. was The Haitian.

Unofficial Sources

Unofficial sources include other websites, magazines, newspapers, and television programs. Although such sources often focus on unbroadcast information and thus fall more under the umbrella of "published spoilers" or "fan theories", some include information about aired episodes as well. This includes things like IMDb's cast listings for broadcast episodes. Some unofficial sources are more credible than others.

Published Spoilers and Fan Theories

Published Spoilers

Published spoilers are information about upcoming episodes or unaired details which are published by an established source, such as an entertainment media magazine or website. It also includes aired promotional spots and trailers for upcoming episodes.

It's important to label spoilers appropriately (using the {{spoiler}} or {{unairedspoiler}} templates) for a few reasons. First, it allows readers to avoid reading information about upcoming episodes that they do not wish to see by warning them, and second, it makes it clear that the information is speculative. Even the most credible spoiler from the most reliable official source can still change before the episode in question airs.

Fan Theories

Fan theories are speculation about upcoming episodes or unaired details created by fans of the show. They include such things as fan posts on message boards and forums, as well as most fan weblogs and podcasts.

Using Sources

Information from canon sources can be used anywhere within any article, so long as it doesn't contradict another canon or non-canon source. It is not necessary to cite a canon source (in other words, the episode), but you can do so if you believe it will make the information more clear or easier to find. Remember to cite canon sources either parenthetically or in a section title to maintain in-world perspective if appropriate. Information from the graphic novels can also be used freely within articles, but should always be cited as coming from the relevant graphic novel. Information from Heroes Evolutions should be confined to Heroes Evolutions-specific sections, if used in the body of an article, or labeled as coming from Heroes Evolutions with a parenthetical citation, if used in a notes section.

Parenthetical citations should always be in parentheses. The namespace should not be used in a parenthetical citation. For instance, the cite should read (Genesis) or (Monsters), not (Episode:Genesis) or (Graphic Novel:Monsters). Likewise, if citing Heroes Evolutions as a source, the cite should read (Heroes Evolutions) (not italicized). As well, iStory citations only need to mention the iStory's name, not the chapter number or title; iStory titles do not need to be italicized. An iStory cite should read (Faction Zero).

If only one source is being cited, the cite can be placed after the period at the end of the sentence or sentences. If more than one source is referenced, the citation should go before the period for each sentence. For example:

Hiro turns his clock back one second. (Genesis)
Claire jumps off an 80-foot structure and survives (Genesis). Later, she repeats her jump for Zach (Godsend).

All other information is technically speculation. All speculative information should be labeled as such and a source should be given. Credible and official sources are generally acceptable in Notes sections. All spoilers should be confined to spoiler articles, and published spoilers should be distinguished from fan-created or fan-reported spoilers.

Fan theories should be confined to Theory articles and clearly labeled as such. Since most fan theories are espoused by a wide number of people and few, if any, are truly original, there's no need to provide a citation for fan theories.

Contradictions between sources

Where a non-canon source contradicts a canon source, or multiple non-canon sources contradict one another, the standard treatment of sources is sufficient: canon and near-canon sources can be used freely throughout the article, while the conflicting non-canon information should be confined to Notes sections and clearly labeled as to its source. However, when two canon sources contradict one another, each statement would require another canon source to be wrong, meaning either statement requires speculation, and neither can legitimately be treated as a canon source without requiring an explanation of the conflict. Since such an explanation necessarily breaks the article's in-world perspective, it should be confined to the Notes section.

Real-World Articles

Articles which relate to the real-world (for example, cast and crew biographies) obviously do not need canon sources. For such articles, it's generally sufficient to use information from published, credible, or official sources.