Wikipedia:Wikifogging

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In articles, it can be difficult to see a subject when details are foggy or obscured.

This essay, WP:Wikifogging explains actions that obscure (or "cast a fog") when editing an article, or in discussing issues with other users. Those actions often create hazy, cloudy, or confusing results, but perhaps as being accidental results (not implying any pre-planned behavior; contrast to term: WP:Wikifinagle).

The focus is on people performing any fogging activities, such as:

  • using acronyms few might know ("text removed per WP:XYZ, ZZXXYY, DFGDG & WP:NOTHUH");
  • trying to change most anything someone inserts, not necessarily as a sinister action, but fogging a user's updates;
  • in a simple discussion, flooding the page with objections, giving many reasons, when perhaps 3 or 4 would suffice;
  • removing too many details from an article, causing the subject to seem fuzzy or hazy.

As a milder term, wikifogging could be used to describe a troublesome user's actions, without insinuating that they had devised an evil conspiracy to harass a user into abandoning an article. Already, the current policy section WP:Wikihounding can be used when there is clear evidence of focused intent against specific users. Instead, a user can be described as "wikifogging" because of fogging the discussion with excessive "cloudy" clutter and removals of text (or images) to create a hazy page. By focusing on the actions (not claiming evil "intent"), then the term could used, any time, to describe actions that obscured the obvious.

In terms of other Wikipedia policies, use of the term "wikifogging" should not be considered a personal attack (see: WP:NPA), because there is no claim of improper conduct, but rather, just that the results are often perceived as hazy, foggy or confusing to other users.

Nebel in der Region Rhön 01386.jpg
Without a clear path, it can be difficult to see what lies ahead.

Fort Point under the Golden Gate Bridge.JPG
  Some fog happens every day,
  where no one is to blame.

Foggy Two Union Square in Seattle, Washington 02-2005.jpg
If details are foggy (or removed) it can be difficult to see the whole picture.

See also[edit]

General essays: