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Wikipedia:Follow all rules

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If the rules prevent you from improving or maintaining Wikipedia's quality, then for crying out loud, read them again. They're rules, you know, and you have to follow them. If they seem to be steering you wrong, you're just not applying enough of them. The rules are never wrong. If they still seem to give you trouble, then frankly, it's time to leave the project.

If people tell you that you have done the wrong thing, and you have followed all the rules, they must be wrong. Go through their recent contributions and search for a rule they've broken. There's bound to be one or two, which are surely the source of all their confusion. Pointing this out will help steer them back on the right path. If this does not help, post the infraction to the administrators' noticeboard with a heading like "rule violation by $ADMIN", and don't forget to suggest a punishment, immediate desysopping, or demotion.[b]

Nothing can be done without process. I mean, you wouldn't drink milk without having it processed, would you?[c] Then why on earth would you run an encyclopedia without it?

And go editing the rules to suit you.

Be helpful to other editors[edit]

In addition, you should remind others of the rules, and train newcomers. Always. Everyone appreciates being taught to be a better editor by learning about a rule put in twenty years ago by five editors, none of whom are active anymore and two are actually dead.

This is also is best done by shouting at the other person in large capital letters. You need to avoid this sort of thing:

 INCORRECT:I think that this would improve the article, so let's do it.

Good grief. Not a single rule is shouted about. Why would anyone pay attention to you if you behave like that, acting as if the person you are addressing is a normal functioning human being with the sense that God gave sheep rather than an encyclopedia editor. Here's how you do it:

 CORRECT:I WP:THINK that this would WP:IMPROVE the article, so let's WP:DO it.

See? It's not just your considered intelligent opinion; you've got rules backing you up! The links don't need to point anywhere, nobody actually reads them. Of course, this can be improved on... sorry, WP:IMPROVED on, even further:


Now this is obviously a strong argument! So many shouted links! You know how effective it is in real life when you put your face close up to somebody and shout loud and fast about things that nobody understands or cares about.[d] Same principle here!

For extra credit, append links to additional rules:


The more shouted links you can shoehorn in, the better. After all, an editor must follow all the rules at all times. There's really no need to call out particular rule, the editor has to follow them all. Unfortunately, because some people are stick-in-the-muds, we are not allowed to use

 UNFORTUNATELY NOT ALLOWED: We need to do this per WP:ALLTHERULES. I'm sure there's some rule somewhere that we'd be breaking if we don't do it.

If necessary, use sweeping arm motions and bang on the table. The other editor won't be able to see this, but at least you'll be alerting your housemates/family/dogs/goldfish/refrigerator that somebody somewhere isn't following the rules.


  1. ^ no, really.
  2. ^ Be sure to use lots of bold text and CAPITAL LETTERS TO EMPHASIZE ITS EXCEPTIONAL IMPORTANCE.
  3. ^ Maybe you would, but work with me here.
  4. ^ We hope! If not, put in a ticket and we can have Larry come over and demonstrate.

See also[edit]