Wikipedia:Disruptive editing"WP:DIS" redirects here. For information about disambiguation pages on Wikipedia, see WP:D. This page documents an English Wikipedia behavioral guideline. It is a generally accepted standard that editors should follow, though it should be treated with common senseand the occasional exception. When editing this page, please ensure that your revision reflects consensus. When in doubt, discuss first on the talk page. Shortcuts:
WP:DIS This page in a nutshell: Disruptive editors may be blockedindefinitely by admins, or bannedby ArbCom / a consensus of Wikipedians. Show the door to trolls, vandals, and wiki-anarchists, who, if permitted, would waste your time and create a poisonous atmosphere here.
Larry Sangeron Wikipedia:Etiquette
- 1 Summary
- 2 Definition of disruptive editing and editors
- 3 Distinguished from productive editing
- 4 Dealing with disruptive editors
- 5 Wikilove
- 6 See also
Wikipedia owes much of its success to its openness. However, that very openness sometimes attracts people who seek to exploit the site as a mouthpiece for viewpoints that constitute original research. While notable minority opinions are welcome when verifiable through reliable sources, and constructive editors occasionally make mistakes, sometimes a Wikipedia editor creates long-term problems by persistently editing a page with information which is not verifiable through reliable sources or insisting on giving undue weight to a minority view.
Disruptive editing already violates site policy, yet certain editors have succeeded in disrupting articles and evading disciplinary action for extended periods because their actions remain limited to a small number of pages and they do not commit gross violations of Wikipedia:Civility. Collectively, disruptive editors harm Wikipedia by degrading its reliability as a reference source and by exhausting the patience of productive editors who may quit the project in frustration when a disruptive editor continues with impunity.
Disruptive editors may seek to disguise their behavior as productive editing, yet distinctive traits separate them from productive editors. When discussion fails to resolve the problem and when an impartial consensus of editors from outside a disputed page agree (through requests for comment or similar means), further disruption should be liable to blocking at the administrators' noticeboard and may lead to more serious disciplinary action through the dispute resolution process. In extreme cases this could include a site ban, either though the arbitration committee or by a consensus.
Wikipedia:Three revert rule, if observed, shall not be construed as a defense against action taken to enforce this policy. As stated in that policy:
- This does not imply that reverting three times or fewer is acceptable. In excessive cases, people can be blocked for edit warring or disruption even if they do not revert more than three times per day.
Definition of disruptive editing and editors
This guideline concerns gross, obvious and repeated violations of fundamental policies, not subtle questions about which reasonable people may disagree. A disruptive editor is an editor who:
- Is tendentious: continues editing an article or group of articles in pursuit of a certain point for an extended time despite opposition from one or more other editors.
- Cannot satisfy Wikipedia:Verifiability; fails to cite sources, cites unencyclopedic sources, misrepresents reliable sources, or manufactures original research.
- Rejects community input: resists moderation and/or requests for comment, continuing to edit in pursuit of a certain point despite an opposing consensus from impartial editors and/or administrators.
In addition, such editors may:
- Campaign to drive away productive contributors: act in spite of policies and guidelines such as Wikipedia:Civility,Wikipedia:No personal attacks, Wikipedia:Ownership of articles, engage in sockpuppetry/meatpuppetry, etc. on a low level that might not exhaust the general community's patience, but that operates toward an end of exhausting the patience of productive rules-abiding editors on certain articles.
Distinguished from productive editing
Editors often post minority views to articles. This fits within Wikipedia's mission so long as the contributions are verifiable and do not give undue weight. The burden of evidence rests with the editor who initially provides the information or wishes the information to remain.
- NPOV says that the article should fairly represent all significant viewpoints that have been published by a verifiable source, and should do so in proportion to the prominence of each. Now an important qualification: Articles that compare views need not give minority views as much or as detailed a description as more popular views, and may not include tiny-minority views at all.
Verifiable and noteworthy viewpoints include protoscience as published through reputable peer-reviewed journals. Editors may reasonably present active public disputes or controversies which are documented by reliable sources. This exemption does not apply to settled disputes; for example, insertion of claims that the Sun revolves around the Earth would not be appropriate today; even though this issue was active controversy in the time of Galileo.
Sometimes well-meaning editors may be misled by fringe publications or make honest mistakes when representing a citation. Such people may reasonably defend their positions for a short time, then concede the issue when they encounter better evidence or impartial feedback. Articles are acceptable which document widely discredited hypotheses (and/or their advocates) which have an organized following, such as the Flat Earth Society. However, claims that the Earth is flat would be inappropriate in articles such as Earth or geography, even if presented as a minority opinion.
In order to protect against frivolous accusations and other potential exploitation, no editor shall be eligible for a disruptive editor block until after a consensus of neutral parties has agreed that an editor has behaved in a disruptive manner. This consensus can be achieved through requests for comment, third opinion, wikiquette alert, or similar means. This does not include editors whose edits constitute violations of probation or other edit restrictions, who may be blocked for such edits independent of this guideline.
Dealing with disruptive editors
Following is a model for remedies, though these steps do not necessarily have to be done in this sequence. In some extreme circumstances a rapid report to WP:ANI may be the best first step, in others, a fast track to a community ban may be in order. But in general, most situations can benefit from a gradual escalation, with hope that each step may help resolve the problem, such that further steps are not needed:
- First unencyclopedic entry by what appears to be a disruptive editor.
- Assume good faith. Do not attack the author who you suspect is disruptive. However, revert uncited or unencyclopedic material. Use an edit summary which describes the problem in non-inflammatory terms. Stay very civil. Post to talk page asking for discussion and/or sources. Consult Do not bite the newcomers, and be aware that you may be dealing with someone who is new and confused, rather than a problem editor.
- If editor unreverts:
- Revert again if they haven't responded at the talkpage. Ensure that a clear explanation for the difference in opinion is posted by you at the article talkpage. Refer to this thread in your edit summary. If possible, suggest compromises at the talkpage.
- If the reverting continues, and they are inserting unsourced information:
- Revert, and request an administrator via Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents (ANI). Provide diffs of the multiple reverts by the tendentious editor. Keep your post short (no more than 250-500 words), well-diffed (multiple diffs showing evidence), and focus on user conduct issues (the tendentious editor is not engaging in discussion / is inserting unsourced information / is ignoring talkpage consensus). Try to avoid going into detailed article content issues at ANI, as it may reduce the likelihood that an admin will understand the complaint. Note: To be most successful at ANI, your own history must be clean. At all times, stay civil, and avoid engaging in multiple reverts yourself.
- If the tendentious editor is using sources, but if the sources are bad or
- Do not go to ANI yet.
- Review Wikipedia:Dispute resolution.
- File a report at the Reliable Sources noticeboard, if appropriate.
- Continue attempts to engage new editor in dialogue. Refer to policies and guidelines as appropriate.
- Suggest Mediation.
- If mediation is rejected, unsuccessful, and/or the problems continue:
- Notify the editor you find disruptive, on their user talkpage.
Include diffs of the problematic behavior. Use a section name and/or edit summary to clearly indicate that you view their behavior as disruptive, but avoid being unnecessarily provocative. Remember, you're still trying to de-escalate the situation. If other editors are involved, they should post their own comments too, to make it clear that the community disapproves of the tendentious behavior.
- Notify the editor you find disruptive, on their user talkpage.
- Tendentious editor continues reverting.
- Assuming that it's one editor against many at this point, continue reverting the tendentious editor. If s/he exceeds three reverts in a 24-hour period, file a report at WP:3RR (but be careful you don't do excessive reverts yourself!). However, one tendentious editor cannot maintain problematic content in the face of multiple other editors reverting his/her edits.
- If the tendentious editor is not violating 3RR, or there aren't enough
editors involved to enforce Wikipedia policies:
- File another ANI report.
- If for some reason administrators do not respond:
- File a Wikipedia:Requests for comment/User conduct, but only if you have multiple diffs to show that you have tried to address the problem via other means, and you have at least one other editor who has attempted to resolve the problem, and will help certify the RfC.
- Editor continues to ignore consensus of the RfC.
- Again request assistance at Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents for administrator intervention, point to consensus from the User Conduct RfC. An admin should issue a warning or temporary block as appropriate.
- If blocks fail to solve the problem, or you are still unable to obtain
attention via ANI, and all other avenues have been tried:
- File a case for the Arbitration Committee to review. Base it strictly on user conduct, and not on article content.
It is important to be as patient and kind as possible. Techniques such as reverting need to be combined with sincere efforts to turn the user toward productive work. Only when editors show themselves unwilling or unable to set issues aside and work harmoniously with others, for the benefit of the project, should they be regarded as irredeemable, and politely but firmly removed.
See alsoCategories: Wikipedia behavioral guidelines | Wikipedia dispute resolution
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