Wikipedia:Make protection requests sparingly

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How do you feel when you cannot enter a place where you want to go, and only a limited number of people can?
Isn't it nicer when the gate can be left open, allowing people to pass through more freely?

Protection of a Wikipedia page is the placement of a limitation on who can edit that page. It is mostly used for pages that are vandalized frequently, are the center of edit wars, or are otherwise frequently misused.

Protection should not be standard practice. It should only be done as a last resort, when failure to do so would stand in the way of the page's purpose to readers.

Protecting or semi-protecting a page limits the number of people who can edit the page, and therefore can hinder good-faith and possibly valuable contributions from being made.

When to request protection[edit]

  • If a page is vandalized more than once daily
  • If a page is involved in an edit war with a lot of people
  • If a page's purpose is seriously misunderstood. For example, the project page Your First Article must have semi-protection because it is mistakenly used a lot as a place to write a first article.

Templates[edit]

There are many templates that should be protected or semi-protected. Since templates are used on multiple pages (which is their primary purpose), vandalism to a template will disrupt the appearance of multiple pages, which in some cases, could be hundreds or thousands.

If it appears a template has reached the point it is pretty much in stone and shall need little or no editing from that day on, full protection can be requested. If there is a good chance it will need more editing in the future, please request semi-protection only. This way, it'll be easier to perform those edits.

Navigational templates should not be protected at all if possible, and if they are, should be semi-protected at the most. With rare exceptions, they should not be fully protected. This is because articles are frequently added to and removed from them or otherwise modified, and they frequently require editing, often from new users or IP editors.

When NOT to request protection[edit]

The following are NOT valid reasons alone for having a page protected:

  • The subject is part of a current event
  • The subject is of a controversial nature
  • The subject is of interest to a seemingly immature crowd
  • The page has recently received one or more valuable contributions from IP or new accounts
  • You do not want the page (other than your own userspace) changed from "your" version (see ownership of articles)