User:Bibliomaniac15/Butcher's rules

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Everybody makes mistakes. Almost everybody concedes that they have made some sort of error. Occasionally, it becomes necessary that another person must bring such an error to the person's attention. Here are the butcher's laws, which may help you as a Wikipedian to point out possible errors in a constructive manner.

Law #1: A cleaver with a fine edge cuts better than a blunt one.[edit]

Be sure to keep your cleaver sharp and shiny.

Besides an obvious cooking connection, we may apply this when we warn somebody of something they may be doing wrong. Interpreted into a Wikipedian sense, we should not be unnecessarily blunt. It is imperative that you remain civil when you ask. If you point it out in a harsh manner...

  • ...the user will become defensive and is less likely to take it constructively.
  • may be dismissed as a troll.
  • may be used against you as a personal attack.
  • ...if the user has recently joined, it may be classified as a bite.

In short, being blunt and rude does not further your own case, but rather lessens it, as well as the user's respect for you.

Law #2: Make direct cuts.[edit]

When you slice meat, you don't make unnecessary cuts and hope it turns out right. Similarly, when you alert the user, be quick and to the point. Address the issue in a professional manner, and it will stand a better chance of being accepted.

See also[edit]