- 1 Introduction: How to play Wikipedia
- 2 Always follow NPOV
- 3 Diversions
- 4 Be nice
- 5 Blocking
- 6 Page protection
- 7 Don't own up to your philosophy
- 8 Pick examples with care
- 9 Rename deleted articles
- 10 Attract your enemy with a diversion
- 11 Delete whatever offends you quickly
Introduction: How to play Wikipedia
If you believe that collaborative editing is the best way to improve Wikipedia, then I suggest you do not read this article.
Always follow NPOV
Don't let people suppress the information you have to share. It doesn't matter what you have to say, as long as you say it right.
Edit articles that are missing your information
The best choices are articles that are not edited very frequently. Republicans are always hanging out at the George W. Bush article so it will take a lot of bickering, detailed knowledge and time to improve that article. Start somewhere else that is equally lacking in your perspective.
Get someone else to trigger the 3RR
Don't revert NPOV changes made by other people. Instead, make your own changes that other people will want to revert. Then, you can report them for violating 1RR or, even better, 3RR.
Phrase statements in a neutral manner to be NPOV
Use "some argue". Note the difference between the following two statements:
- POV: George W. Bush is a terrorist.
- NPOV: Some argue that George W. Bush is a terrorist.
The first statement is clearly POV and should be immediately deleted. But, the second is a paragon of impartiality and a neutral point of view. When "some argue" doesn't feel right, try using "many critics". "Concerns about" also works quite well. Make up your own once you get better at it. Here are some examples:
- Past NPOV phrasing using "some argue"
- Past NPOV phrasing using "many critics"
- Past NPOV phrasing using "concerns about"
Google is the best way to cite
Cite your sources. For example, I wanted to cite the sentence below (which was already NPOV, but let's say someone disputed that anyone had said that). Well, Google proves them "wrong":
- Some argue that George W. Bush is a terrorist. <ref>[http://www.nogw.com/ "George W. Bush - Terrorist in the White House"]</ref> See using Help:Footnotes.
It's important to divert attention from any edit you make so partisans won't be able to suppress your information. One good way to do this is to make a series of edits, especially mixing in some grammar and spelling fixes. Putting a minor edit on top can't hurt, so do that too. A lot of people just check the top edit.
Always be painfully nice to anyone who disagrees with you. Remember, like any game, the point is to let the other team foul more often than you foul. If you have conviction and belief in your edits, someone who doesn't will probably get angry at you because they failed to suppress your information. And someone who is angry is much less likely to get in your way. Why? Because emotional people can't be bothered to follow the rules and they always get in trouble.
It's always important to bring in a neutral third party, ideally a friend, to block anyone the moment they violate a rule. Once they've been blocked, it will be very hard for them to suppress your information.
If you have gotten the article just right in an edit war, it's a good idea to stop anyone from making further changes that will change it from being NPOV to POV. Quickly hop on IRC (#wikipedia on irc.freenode.net) and ask a neutral third-party to protect the page, ideally someone who hasn't been following the edit war so you can get them to protect the right version.
Don't own up to your philosophy
Whoever you voted for, whatever you believe, don't put it into your User page. All it's going to do is encourage someone from the other side to stand overlord over your pages. Seriously, what will it buy you? It's better to hide the real you, whatever it is. This place is not about being honest about who you are.
[8:57pm] <ambi2> these userboxen are informative. [8:57pm] <ambi2> i just found that *another* user i previously respected is a right-wing asshole.
Pick examples with care
Let's say you are writing an article that includes some amount of criticism. Yes, you could use negative examples from both sides, but it would make your point better to use related examples many times. It's only more confusing to switch around and use examples from "both sides". Likewise, so-called counterbalancing points will only obscure matters.
Rename deleted articles
If you create a new article, and someone attempts to get it deleted, then they will probably quote a policy to censor you. Do not let censors get in the way of your new article. It is not your fault that people are unable to get the point of what you are trying to say. If they succeed, you can always recreate the article. The key is to name it something else. If you name it the same thing, then someone is more likely to notice. It isn't your fault that people are unable to follow your advanced thinking.
Attract your enemy with a diversion
If you are an advanced user, it is often appropriate to create articles that are intended to attract censors (such as Santorum (sexual slang)). This is similar to the George Bush strategy of invading Iraq to attract terrorists. Yes, censors are like terrorists, except that they don't blow things up or kill people. They only kill ideas. Anyhow, make sure it will be hard to delete your offensive article by basing on some external web thing that you and your friends created. Then, it will be NPOV and the censors will only waste their time.
Delete whatever offends you quickly
The key is to delete articles that offend you quickly. The longer you wait, the more people will be editing the article and the higher the chance you will lose. You will also look more like a censor if there is a lot of information in the article at the time you delete it. If you want to win, delete quickly. Ideally, employ the speedy deletion policy.