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Maintenance departments

As well as adding content, many people at Wikipedia are involved in maintenance tasks. Most of these tasks can be done by any user. Maintenance work is a vital part of keeping Wikipedia running optimally. Be careful to avoid creating more maintenance work through instruction creep. Organize when you can, but always keep the big picture in sight: we are here to create an encyclopedia. Tasks of the most pressing importance can be found at Wikipedia:Backlog.

If you are a newbie or if you just want a list of jobs and tasks to be completed that is easy to understand, please see the Job Center.

Things to watch

Category tracker

Centralized discussion
Proposals: policy other Discussions Ideas

For a listing of ongoing discussions, see the dashboard.

Immediate requests

Category Entries
Wikipedians looking for help 0
Requests for unblock 37
Candidates for speedy deletion as attack pages 0
Candidates for speedy deletion as copyright violations 2
Candidates for speedy deletion 39
Wikipedia fully-protected edit requests 0


Category Entries
Articles for deletion 922
Templates for deletion 73
Categories for deletion 134
Wikipedia files for discussion 212
All redirects for discussion 295
Miscellaneous pages for deletion 82
Possible copyright violations 83
All articles proposed for deletion 487
All books proposed for deletion 105
Unsorted AfD debates 12
All files with the same name on Commons 10

Image copyright problems

Category Entries
Orphaned fair use 792
Unknown copyright status 148
Unknown source 17
No fair use rationale 15
Replaceable fair use images 16
Disputed fair use images 17

Page protection

Category Entries
Protected 251
Semi-protected user and user talk pages 685
Protected user and user talk pages 293
Protected against vandalism 3
Protected talk pages of blocked users 39
Semi-protected 1,578
Arbitration 500/30 restricted 520


General cleanup

Category Entries Percentage
All pages needing cleanup 21,027 0.39
All articles needing rewrite 4,123 0.08
All articles needing expert attention 6,942 0.13
All Wikipedia articles in need of updating 16,231 0.3

Reference problems

Category Entries Percentage
All pages needing factual verification 4,258 0.08
All articles with unsourced statements 316,095 5.92
All articles lacking sources 207,207 3.88
All unreferenced BLPs 2,982 0.37
All articles needing additional references 301,909 5.65
All articles needing references cleanup 4,750 0.09
All articles lacking in-text citations 86,809 1.63
All articles with dead external links 147,481 2.76

Image cleanup problems

Category Entries Percentage
Files for cleanup 118 -
Wikipedia files lacking a description 21 -
Wikipedia files with unknown source 576 -

Other problems

Category Entries Percentage
All articles to be merged 7,950 0.15
All articles to be split 781 0.01
Unsorted Stubs 22 -
Stub categories 14,359 -
All uncategorized pages 412 0.01
All orphaned articles 143,596 2.69
All articles needing copy edit 1,665 0.03
All articles needing style editing 15,898 0.3
All Wikipedia articles needing context 3,732 0.07
All articles that may contain original research 15,356 0.29


Category Entries
Requested moves 153
All NPOV disputes 6,872
All accuracy disputes 7,274
Articles with invalid ISBNs 1
All articles to be expanded 125,506

Possible copyright violations

Wikipedia:Copyright problems lists articles which will be deleted if it can not be proven that we have permission to use them under the terms of the GFDL. For pages listed there, you could replace the infringing article's text with new (re-written) content of your own. This must be done on a temp page, so that the original "copyvio version" may be deleted by a sysop. Temp versions should be written at a page like: [[Talk:PAGE NAME/temp]]. If the original turns out not to be a copyvio, these two can be merged. Alternatively, you can write to the copyright owner and check whether they gave permission. You can also ask for permission using the boilerplate request for permission. If someone claims to have permission, but this has not been verified, you can send the confirmation of permission letter to check. If images have been listed, you may want to consider whether these constitute fair use and write the appropriate disclaimers on the image description page. See Wikipedia:Image description page#Fair use rationale for guidance on this.

Maintaining portals

See Wikipedia:Portal for a list of existing portals and associated projects and maintainers.

Foreign language pages

For pages listed on Wikipedia:Pages needing translation into English, the Wikipedia:Embassy member of the Wikipedia that relates to the language the article is in should be contacted and invited to move the page to their own Wikipedia or to help translate it. There is also a list of translators at Wikipedia:translation. If you don't know what language the article is in you could use Language recognition chart and if that fails some language recognition web site to find out. If a page remains untranslated after two weeks, or if someone who speaks the language it is written in states that it is not worth translating, then article should be moved from pages needing translation to articles for deletion. The boilerplate text on the article should be changed from {{notenglish}} to {{subst:afd}}.

Welcoming newcomers

Welcome people using one of the standard user greetings or make up your own. Use {{Opentask}} to leave an automatically updated task list on a new user's page. New users can be found by looking for red talk page links on recent changes or by querying the database. Efforts to co-ordinate the activities of welcomers are being made at Wikipedia:Welcoming committee. The {{Opentask}} message gives newcomers some ideas of articles to work on. The tasks listed in this template can be changed at Template:Opentask.

Main page

The Main Page needs regular updating. Only sysops can edit the page itself. See Wikipedia:Editing the main page for links to the relevant templates and further guidance.


Anyone can revert vandalism. See Wikipedia:revert for instructions. If you see any recurrent vandalism, you can list it at Wikipedia:Administrator intervention against vandalism. You can also check other listings on that page and follow them up by seeing if the users listed there have made any further vandalism since the listing. Do this by typing the url followed by the username or by clicking the contribs link in the page history. Unreverted edits will still have (current) next to them. Sysops may choose to block recurrent vandals, following a warning on the user's talk page using Special:Blockip, or for unlogged-in users clicking the block link next to their IP on recent changes.

The pages linked to from the main page often see the most vandalism, so checking those pages via the links on Editing the Main Page can be a good place to look if you feel like vandal spotting.

See also: Wikipedia:How to spot vandalism

Current events

Not maintenance as such, but Portal:Current events is a page that needs to be updated daily. Please read Wikipedia:How the Current events page works before working on this.

Request and maintenance queues

You can help improve the articles listed below! This list updates frequently, so check back here for more tasks to try.

Fix spelling and grammar

More...Learn how
Fix wikilinks

More...Learn how
Update with new information

More...Learn how
Expand short articles

More...Learn how
Check and add references

More...Learn how
Fix original research issues

More...Learn how
Improve lead sections

More...Learn how
Add an image

More...Learn how
Translate and clean up

More...Learn how

For each queue listed below, editors are needed to:

  • Rotate individual articles and projects onto Template:Opentasks (shown above) as they are fixed or become stale.
  • Publicize neglected lists or consolidate them with active pages
  • Remove articles from the listings as they are fixed.
  • Actually fix the individual articles that are listed.

Instructions are given on each page.

Category Description Relevant page Wikipedia custom message
Cleanup Articles to cleanup Wikipedia:Cleanup {{clean}}
Controversial issues Articles that need watching for bias Wikipedia:List of controversial issues {{controversial}}
Copyright infringement Articles with possible copyright infringements Wikipedia:Copyright problems {{copyvio|url=<place URL of allegedly copied material here>}}
Deletion Articles that should be deleted Wikipedia:Articles for deletion See Wikipedia:Articles for deletion for instructions.
Disputed accuracy Articles of Accuracy dispute Wikipedia:Accuracy dispute {{Disputed}}
Disputed neutrality Articles of NPOV dispute Wikipedia:NPOV dispute {{NPOV}} or {{disputed}}
Duplicated articles Articles on the same subject which need to be merged Wikipedia:Duplicate articles  
Foreign language Articles not in English Wikipedia:Pages needing translation {{notenglish}}
New pages Newly created articles Special:Newpages  
Open tasks Wikipedia's open tasks Template:Opentask {{opentask}}
Pages needing attention Articles that have good information, but need work for some reason Wikipedia:Pages needing attention  
Requested images Pages that need images Wikipedia:Requested images  
Requested peer review Articles that need peer editing Wikipedia:Peer review  
Stubs Stub articles Wikipedia:Find or fix a stub See Wikipedia:WikiProject Stub sorting for a list of subject-specific stub templates.
Too short Subjects that deserve a longer article Wikipedia:Requests for expansion  
Too long Articles which strain browsers Special:Longpages  


There are many pages in Category:Wikipedia dispute resolution which could use help in resolving various kinds of disputes. Some disputes are easy to resolve - someone needs to propose or implement a compromise (check out the appropriate talk page), or the dispute is over and someone just needs to declare the problem solved. Many disputes between parties can be resolved after uninvolved strangers wander in, read the article in question and the debate so far, and just give common-sense opinions. In rare cases, delicate negotiating skills are needed to bring warring parties to a satisfactory agreement, or administrative powers are needed to ban vandals or uncooperative editors.

The main page to list disputes is Wikipedia:Requests for comment. Current requests for comment can be found at WP:RFC/A. There is also a static request board that needs volunteers to move requests to the appropriate talk page.[under discussion]

There are lists of articles in dispute in:

Initial categorization efforts

See also: Wikipedia:Categorization projects (current)

Images with missing articles

Several pages on the web offer their public domain images in a long list. To avoid checking these lists again and again for matching Wikipedia articles, Wikipedia:Images with missing articles has a list of specific images with missing articles. If you see that one of these articles exists, please add the image from the external link, and remove it from the list.

Peer review

Wikipedia:Peer review is designed to solicit comments on articles that have had major work by a single author, or which are going to be submitted to Wikipedia:Featured article candidates. Articles that don't successfully become featured are often referred back to this step.

Editors are needed to:

  • Comment on articles listed
  • Remove old requests (instructions are on the page itself)

Make a donation

Wikipedia is in constant need of more server capacity, bandwidth and other technical services to keep it running and keep it fast enough to be useful. Financial contributions to our non-profit parent, the Wikimedia Foundation, are greatly appreciated. Please see

Publicize Wikipedia

See Category:Wikipedia publicity.

Help other users

Even new users can help answer factual questions on the Wikipedia:Reference desk, which serves the same purpose as a reference desk you might find in your local library. (You might also think of it as the Wikipedia version of Yahoo Answers or Windows Live QnA.) You do not have to be an expert on Wikipedia because:

  • You can help people find answers in existing Wikipedia articles.
  • If you know the answer to a question not answered by Wikipedia, you can assist the questioner and at the same time, add that information to Wikipedia for the benefit of future readers.
  • If you do not know the answer to an interesting question, you can research it in non-Wikipedia sources, and then improve Wikipedia for the benefit of the questioner and future readers.

If you already have some experience, your assistance in one of the many Wikipedia help forums, including Wikipedia:Help desk, would be a valuable contribution. You can help Wikipedia grow by helping other people share what they know.

Programmers wanted

Programming skills are especially valuable, to help write useful standalone scripts, or to improve the software that runs Wikipedia.

See also

Language Wikipedia svg logo-en.svg WiktionaryEn.svg Wikiversity-logo.svg Wikibooks-logo-en.svg Wikisource-logo-fr.svg WikiNews-Logo-en.svg Wikiquote-logo-en.svg Commons-logo-en.svg
English Maintenance Things to do Maintenance Administrative Assistance Community Portal The Newsroom Maintenance Community Portal
French Maintenance What to do ? Maintenance Contributors requests How to contribute Newsroom Maintenance Community Portal