I grew up in a small suburb of Rochester, New York called Brighton.  Brighton is a tightly knit community with a lot of hometown pride and yet when I looked at its Wikipedia page, I found it pretty thin.  Almost everyone I know who lives or has lived there loves the people, the history and the landscape but that was not really reflected in the Wikipedia page.   For that reason, I chose to evaluate the Brighton page and suggest some improvements.

For starters, the page is just not very comprehensive.  There is an outline of what Brighton is all about, but very little detail under any of the sub-headers with the exception of Demographics.  Though it’s good to have a thorough Demographics section, listing a lot of statistics without giving them a context that describes what the place is actually like doesn’t offer much insight.  The Demographics section should remain as is but the other sections should be supplemented.

Upstate New York has a lot of history to it and the current Wikipedia page does not expound upon that enough.  For example, Brighton’s first settlers were Native American; they belonged to the Seneca tribe, which is part of the Iroquois confederacy.  Brighton also houses Monroe County’s oldest landmark, the Stone Tolan House, built in 1792.  Originally specializing in grain farming, Brighton shifted to fruit, dairy and seeds in the mid-nineteenth century.  These are just a few parts of Brighton’s history that aren’t really laid out in the current Wikipedia page.

Brighton only has one school system and one high school so it’s a huge part of the town’s identity.  The school has long had the reputation of being one of the best public options in the country but its rankings have fluctuated over the years.  The page mentions this, and cites some dated rankings from when it was placed higher on Newsweek’s list.  But it doesn’t focus on the other aspects of the high school that are big parts of the town specifically sports.  Brighton has always had one of the best girl’s lacrosse teams in the country and it regularly sends its players to top lacrosse universities after graduation.  Other sports fluctuate more regularly but would still be worth mentioning; with only one high school, the sports teams are a big part of the town’s identity.  Interestingly, the Wikipedia page on Brighton High School is much more comprehensive than the one on the town itself.  Some of the information there should definitely be added to this page.

There is no section on the industry and commerce of Brighton.  Not so long ago, Rochester was home to Kodak, Xerox and Bausch & Lomb (Xerox has moved its headquarters) so many Brighton residents work for one of these three companies.  There is also a big medical community affiliated with the University of Rochester and many residents are practice in that field.  A section on industry and commerce is definitely necessary for any area’s Wikipedia page.

Sourcing for this page is good but thin, though there are not that many reputable sources to choose from.  The page gets its information from reliable sources but it should include greater detail (which some of the sources provide, it just hasn’t been added to the Wikipedia page).  The page is notably missing anything from the Democrat & Chronicle, Rochester’s local newspaper, a very reputable publication and a big part of the town of Brighton.

The article is largely written from a neutral point of view with one glaring exception, the education section.  Brighton Central School District’s ranking among the nation’s public schools, particularly in Newsweek’s annual poll has long been a source of pride especially because it has historically beaten its rival and neighbor Pittsford.  However, over the past decade or so, its ranking has slipped and the article talks about the old rankings without mentioning the more recent ones.

Readability is good; the information given is interesting and well written there just isn’t enough of it.  The one exception is the Demographics section, which is just a list of statistics that goes on too long.  But, more importantly, expanding on the other sections, which might give those statistics some context, is what this page really needs.

Formatting is standard Wikipedia and works well but the page could definitely use more illustrations.  Pictures of the town’s center, the landscape, a better picture of the high school or some of the historic landmarks are just a few suggestions.

I would recommend adding information from the following sources:

http://www.historicbrighton.org/

http://education.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-high-schools

http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/features/2011/americas-best-high-schools.html

http://www.bcsd.org

http://democratandchronicle.com

More illustrations can be added from here:

http://www.historicbrighton.org/architecture/

http://www.townofbrighton.org/DocumentView.aspx?DID=894

All of the sources already cited on the page should be drawn from in greater detail.

Here is my Wikipedia user page. 

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