Wikipedia:Write good edit summaries

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A good edit summary consists of many elements, each and every one being extremely essential.

Good Edit Summaries[edit]

Length[edit]

One of the frequent mistakes done by editors in Wikipedia is providing extremely long edit summaries. This should be avoided at all costs. Edit summaries are what the name implies: summaries, not essays, and thus, short and clear. If an edit you made is quite significant, report it on the Talk Page thoroughly and simply give a brief description of what you did in the edit summary.

Context[edit]

Should be as brief as possible, whilst maintaining clarity. Removal of auxiliary verbs is a way to acieve this. Also, avoid expressing extreme feelings in edit summary, as they are extremely unhelpful.

Content & Formatting[edit]

A good edit summary is never written in all caps. If one should express disdain for a specific edit, they should probably include it in the talk page, and not the edit summary.

Good Edit Summaries[edit]

  • Fixed link -for fixing broken links or bad markup.
  • Removed (extreme) POV -for removing (extremely) biased statements.
  • Added prod/db/wikify... template -for adding templates of different kinds.
  • rvv -for reverting vandalism.
  • Removed (inappropriate) link -for inappropriate external links.
  • Added information/details/trivia... -for adding encyclopedic content.
  • Fixed grammar -for improving grammar.
  • Typo -for fixing typos.
  • Tone -for improving the tone of text.
  • Rewrote section/article -for rewriting when texts reads like an essay/advert/blurb...
  • Formatting/Wikifying -when wikifying.
  • WP is not a dictionary/a crystal ball/censored etc. -when removing inappropriate content.
  • Added image/sound file -when providing media file links.
  • Stub sorting -when sorting an article according to stub type.
  • Categorising -when categorising.
  • Provided link(s)/reference(s) -for adding external links.
  • Added internal link -for adding internal links.
  • Posted message -when posting a message to another user.
  • Question -when posting questions on other user's pages or to the reference desk/village pump.
  • Reply -when replying to questions.
  • User page edit -when editing your user page.
  • Warning user -when warning vandals.
  • Wrote essay -when writing essays.
  • Markup -when correcting markup.
  • Factual error -for fixing obvious factual errors.
  • Added content -when making major addittons.
  • ... and misc -for other kinds of edits.

When not to give edit summaries[edit]

Generally, when you create or upload something, an edit summary will be filled for you, so don't bother writing one. Also, when using anti-vandal tools, such as VandalProof, edit summaries are already filled in.