This page contains material which is considered humorous. It may also contain advice.

Wikipedia:Don't delete the main page

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One admin was discussing the deletion of the main page in IRC and asked if the technical ability to delete pages with over 5,000 revisions, like the main page, had ever been re-enabled. Another admin (jokingly) commented that he had tested it and found that the main page still couldn't be deleted. The first admin thought he would test it for himself. The main page got deleted.[1][a]

You might think you are having a laugh, but sometimes, the joke is missed. If you find yourself having to say "jokes do not come across well here", you are best off having avoided the joke in the first place.

In other words, do not even joke about causing disruption – someone may miss that it was meant in humor or sarcasm and act on it.

Historical context[edit]

As honored in the village stocks, this succeeds the admin who locked the servers for half an hour by deleting the Sandbox, necessitating the restriction of deletions for articles with over 5,000 edits. It is followed by the editor who used a bot to add 1,200 useless edits to the Main Page, hoping to bring it up to the 5000-edit level where it would not be deletable. Fortunately, the Main Page now enjoys a sui generis immunity to deletion in the software.[2]

See also[edit]

Following this incident, the vulnerability was addressed. If a person tries now, they should receive a message that says "you can't delete or move the main page". This is not an excuse to try to delete the Main Page. It might work! (We mean the deletion might work—​​not the excuse.)


  1. ^ This was not, by a long stretch, the first time the Main Page was deleted. See its deletion log entry Some resulted from the involved administrators' accounts being compromised. For example, the deletion as of 05:08, December 8, 2007 – which resulted in a desysopping – was apparently the account being used by a relative after the admin failed to log off, and the incident as of May 7, 2007 was the result of a password hack.


  1. ^ "I deleted the Main Page". Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/IncidentArchive363. Retrieved 21 February 2010.
  2. ^ Fwd: Re: Deletion of large pages Tim Starling, WikiEN-l Mailing List, February 4, 2008.