Wikipedia:Just drop it

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If you do not hold this thorn apple in your hand, it cannot hurt you

"Just drop it" is a sentiment sometimes voiced during heated or protracted disputes on Wikipedia. It may also be used when one party is advocating a position unpopular with a number of other respondents.

While some users do behave in a tendentious manner, others may be voicing heartfelt concerns. "Just drop it" is not a very useful response in either case.

Responding sensibly[edit]

To win, just walk away.

Some users thrive on arguments, and an admonition to stop arguing just gives them a new thing to argue against ("You can't silence me!") The simplest approach toward these users is "do not feed the trolls". Such users are playing a game, and telling them to "just drop it" is just hitting the ball back to them. Instead of trying to get in the last word, ignore them and walk off the court.

If other responders choose not to walk away, and instead continue responding, either in agreement or disagreement, that is their right. Unless the conversation is expressly disruptive and turning into a flame war, let the conversation continue unabated, and find somewhere else to focus your energy.

When it is appropriate to say "Please stop that"[edit]

Forum shopping[edit]

If a user is dissatisfied with the answers he or she receives in one forum, the user might decide to take their concerns to another forum. For example, if a user makes an ANI report and finds the users there unwilling or unable to address their concerns, they might choose to post the same concern on a policy talk page, an admin's talk page, Jimbo's talk page, or in several such locations. This constitutes forum shopping and is discouraged. In cases like this, the user should be contacted on his or her talk page and given an explanation as to why such behavior is considered disruptive. Adding a note to each "shopped" post explaining where prior discussion of the issue took place helps to keep redundant discussion to a minimum.

Incivility[edit]

A user who finds himself in a minority position may resort to personal attacks or some other form of incivility. When an editor makes targeted personal attacks against another user, that editor should be asked politely but sternly to discontinue making personal attacks (any editor may do so, including the one being attacked). If the editor persists in being uncivil, the blocking policy may have to be applied. However, good faith should still be assumed, if possible; people in minority positions may have a valid point that is masked by their frustration. This is especially true when responding to new users, who have yet to learn Wikipedia's standards of contribution and conduct.

See also[edit]