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The purpose of an article's "talk page (accessible via the talk or discussion tab) is to provide space for editors to discuss changes to its associated article or "WikiProject. Article talk pages should not be used by editors as platforms for their personal views on a subject. When talk pages in other "namespaces and "userspaces are used for discussion and communication between users, discussion should be directed solely toward the improvement of the encyclopedia.

The talk page associated with an article is named "Talk:Example", where "Example" is the name of the article. For example, the talk page for discussion of improvements to the article "Australia is named "Talk:Australia.

When writing on a talk page, certain approaches are counter-productive, whereas others facilitate good editing. The prime values of the talk page are communication, courtesy, and consideration. The following list is designed to help Wikipedians use talk pages effectively.

All guidelines here also apply to Wikipedia discussion pages, such as "articles for deletion.

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Central points[edit]

Maintain Wikipedia policy[edit]

There is reasonable allowance for speculation, suggestion, and personal knowledge on talk pages, with a view to prompting further investigation, but it is usually a misuse of a talk page to continue to argue any point that has not met "policy requirements. Pay particular attention to "Wikipedia:Biographies of living persons, which applies to talk pages as well as to articles: "Editors must take particular care adding information about living persons to any Wikipedia page."[1]

Creating talk pages[edit]

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Talk pages are generally created by clicking a red "Talk" tab and creating the page, like any other page.

Do not create an empty talk page simply so that one will exist for future use. Do not create a page solely to place the {{"Talk header}} template on it. "Template:Talk header and similar discussion warning templates should not be added to pages that do not have discussions on them. There is no need to add discussion warning templates to every talk page, or even to every talk page that contains a discussion.

How to use article talk pages[edit]

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Good practices for all talk pages used for collaboration[edit]

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Behavior that is unacceptable[edit]

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Stay in the top three sections of this pyramid.

Please note that some of the following are of sufficient importance to be official Wikipedia policy. Violations (and especially repeated violations) may lead to the offender being "blocked or "banned from editing Wikipedia.

Editing others' comments[edit]

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It is not necessary to bring talk pages to publishing standards, so there is no need to correct typing/spelling errors, grammar, etc. It may irritate the users whose comments you are correcting. The basic rule—with some specific exceptions outlined below—is that you should not edit or delete the comments of other editors without their permission.

Never edit or move someone's comment to change its meaning, even on your own talk page.

Striking text constitutes a change in meaning, and should only be done by the user who wrote it or someone acting at their explicit request.

Generally, you should not break up another editor's text by interleaving your own replies to individual points; this confuses who said what and obscures the original editor's intent. In your own posts you may wish to use the {{"Talk quotation}} or {{"Talkquote}} templates to quote others' posts.

Cautiously editing or removing another editor's comments is sometimes allowed, but normally you should stop if there is any objection. If you make anything more than minor changes it is good practice to leave a short explanatory note such as "[possible libel removed by ~~~~]". Some examples of appropriately editing others' comments:

In the past, it was standard practice to "summarize" talk page comments, but this practice has fallen out of use. On regular wikis with no "talk" tab, the summary would end up as the final page content. Wikipedia has separate tabs for article content and discussion pages. "Refactoring and "archiving are still appropriate, but should be done with courtesy and reversed on protest.

Editing own comments[edit]

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So long as no one has yet responded to your comment, it's accepted and common practice that you may continue to edit your remarks for a short while to correct mistakes, add links or otherwise improve them. If you've accidentally posted to the wrong page or section or if you've simply changed your mind, it's been only a short while and no one has yet responded, you may remove your comment entirely.

But if anyone has already replied to or quoted your original comment, changing your comment may deprive any replies of their original context, and this should be avoided. Once others have replied, or even if no one's replied but it's been more than a short while, if you wish to change or delete your comment, it is commonly best practice to indicate your changes.

Ignoring comments[edit]

Persistently formatting your comments on a talk page in a non-compliant manner, after friendly notification by other editors, is a mild form of disruption. After you have been alerted to specific aspects of these guidelines (such as indentation, sectioning, and signatures), you are expected to make a reasonable effort to follow those conventions. Other editors may simply ignore additional posts that flagrantly disregard the talk page formatting standards.

Disputes[edit]

If you have a disagreement or a problem with someone's behavior, please read "Wikipedia:Dispute resolution.

Closing discussions[edit]

Closing a discussion means summarizing the results, and identifying any consensus that has been achieved. A general rule of thumb is that discussions should be kept open at least a week before closing, although there are "some exceptions to this.

Any uninvolved editor may write a closing statement for most discussions, not just admins. However, if the discussion is particularly contentious or the results are especially unclear, then a request specifically for a closing statement from an uninvolved administrator may be preferable.

Requesting a close[edit]

Any participant in a discussion may request that an uninvolved editor or admin formally close any type of discussion (not just RFCs), if any one or more of the following criteria are true:

Please do not request a closing statement from an uninvolved editor unless one of these three criteria have been met.

You may request that an uninvolved editor formally close a discussion by placing a note at "Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Requests for closure. Please ensure that any request there seeking a close is neutrally worded, and do not use that board to continue the discussion in question. If you are requesting attention specifically from an admin, then please state that clearly in your request.

Marking a closed discussion[edit]

When an issue has been resolved without controversy, this may be marked simply by adding the {{"Resolved}} template at the top of the thread, adding a brief statement of how the issue was dealt with. If you took action yourself to resolve the issue you may instead use the {{"Done}} template in your own final comment stating what you did. Adding one of these templates will help future readers to spot more quickly those issues that remain unresolved.

When a more complex discussion has been closed, to discourage any further comments you may optionally use the {{"Archive top}} and {{"Archive bottom}} templates (although some particular types of discussion, such as those which concern whether to delete or rename a page, have their own specialized templates) — {{"Archive top}} and {{"Archive bottom}} templates should not be used by involved parties to end a discussion over the objections of other editors. For example:

{{Archive top}}
Discussion text...
{{Archive bottom}}

A closed discussion looks like this:

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.


The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Technical and format standards[edit]

Layout[edit]

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New topics and headings on talk pages[edit]

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Links, time, and page name[edit]

When to archive pages[edit]

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Large talk pages become difficult to read, strain the limits of older browsers, and load slowly over slow internet connections. As a "rule of thumb, "archive closed discussions when a talk page exceeds 75 KB or has multiple resolved or stale discussions. See "Help:Archiving a talk page for information about how to archive talk page content.

Archive—don't delete: When a talk page has become too large or a particular subject is no longer discussed, do not delete the content, even your own—archive it instead. If content is archived prematurely, such as when the discussion is still relevant to current work or discussion of a subject was not concluded, restore the content to the talk page from the archive. Do not unarchive (that is, restore) sections for the sake of reopening discussions that are effectively closed. Instead, start a new discussion and link to the archived prior discussion of the subject.

Centralized talk pages[edit]

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Often, there are a number of related pages that would benefit from one single talk page for discussions. For example, a list article may have grown too large and was split alphabetically. Or there may be a set of templates that are used together or interrelated MediaWiki interface pages.

Before implementing a centralized talk page, you might first propose and gain consensus. The main discussion would usually be on the proposed centralized talk page with notices on the pages to be redirected. Notices may be placed on related pages as needed; for example, a relevant WikiProject page or "Wikipedia:Village pump (proposals). {{"Centralize notice}} may be used to note the proposal.

If consensus is gained, then:

  1. Archive current discussions on all the talk pages to be centralized; see "Help:Archiving a talk page
  2. Check each talk page for subpages. These are usually archived discussions, but other subpages are sometimes created, such as drafts or reviews. See "Wikipedia:Subpages#Finding subpages.
  3. On the centralized talk page, list the redirected pages. {{"Central}} is useful for this.
  4. On the centralized talk page, list all of the archived talk pages. {{"Archive banner}} is useful for this.
  5. Redirect each talk page to the desired talk page; see "Wikipedia:Redirect. It is recommended that an editnotice be created for the redirected talk pages; see "Wikipedia:Editnotice. {{"Editnotice central redirected}} is useful for this.
  6. It is recommended that an editnotice be created for the centralized talk page. {{"Editnotice central}} is useful for this.
  7. Ensure that involved editors realize that they need to add the centralized talk page to their watchlist.

Examples of centralized talk pages: "Talk:List of aircraft, "Help talk:Cite errors, "Help talk:Footnotes, "MediaWiki talk:Common.css.

User talk pages[edit]

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User talk pages are subject to the general userpage guidelines on handling inappropriate content (see "User pages § Handling inappropriate content).

While the purpose of article talk pages is to discuss the content of articles, the purpose of user talk pages is to draw the attention or discuss the edits of a user. Wikipedia is not a social networking site, and all discussion should ultimately be directed solely toward the improvement of the encyclopedia. User talk pages must serve their primary purpose, which is to make communication and collaboration among editors easier. Editors who refuse to use their talk page for these purposes are violating the spirit of the talk page guidelines, and are not acting collaboratively.

Personal talk page cleanup: Although "archiving is preferred, users may freely remove comments from their own talk pages. Users may also remove some content in archiving. The removal of a warning is taken as evidence that the warning has been read by the user. This specifically includes both registered and unregistered users. (Many new users believe they can hide critical comments by deleting them. This is not true: Such comments can always be retrieved from the page history.)

There are certain types of notices that users may not remove from their own talk pages, such as declined unblock requests and speedy deletion tags (see "User pages § Removal of comments, notices, and warnings for full details).

User talk pages are "almost never deleted, although a "courtesy blanking may be requested.

Talk page search[edit]

You can use the "Special:Search box below to locate Talk pages. See "Help:Searching for more information.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ People are assumed to be living unless there is reason to believe otherwise. This policy does not apply to people "declared dead in absentia.
  2. ^ Per "WP:SIGN, continued and deliberate refusal to sign posts may result in sanctions.
  3. ^ URLs of edit histories and revision differences begin with http://en.wikipedia.org/w/, and Wikipedia's robots.txt file disallows /w/.
) ) WikipediaAudio is not affiliated with Wikipedia or the WikiMedia Foundation.