Wikipedia:No terms of endearment

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Don't do it[edit]

Do not express terms of endearment anywhere in Wikipedia. Comment on content, not on the contributor. Terms of endearment damage the community and deter users. Nobody likes affection on the Internet. Totally embarrassing!

Consequences[edit]

Many Wikipedians remove terms of endearment on sight, and although this is not policy, it is often seen as an appropriate reaction to extreme personal affection. Users have been unilaterally blocked for using terms of endearment. Affectionate edit summaries are particularly ill-regarded. Comment on content, not on the contributor.

Ramifications[edit]

Remember that disputes on talk pages are accessible to everyone on the Internet. The way in which you conduct yourself on Wikipedia reflects on Wikipedia and on you. Take cold showers if necessary. Comment on content, not on the contributor.

Being reasonable[edit]

Different contributors may agree on an article, even to the point where they feel they are "truly thinking as one mind" or that the other contributors "understand them more deeply than anyone ever has." Members of communities of affection reasonably wish to express similar views. Subjecting these views to rigorous examination, even if the contributor is a total dreamboat, creates a better, more beige article for everyone. Remember to accept that, while we are all part of the same community as we are all Wikipedians, there's such a thing as being too much part of the same community. Comment on content, not on the contributor.

So, don't do it![edit]

There is no excuse for expressing terms of endearment towards other contributors. Do not use them.

Examples[edit]

Specific examples of terms of endearment include but are not limited to:

  • Affectionate personal comments and "will you be mine" inquiries, such as "Will you be my valentine?"
  • Specific terms of endearment, such as calling someone your beau.
  • Sexually suggestive in any way, homoerotic, explicit or suggestive comments directed at another contributor.
  • Asking another user if they want to "go steady".
  • Double entendres made toward another contributor.
  • Marriage proposals.
  • Anything else I, or anybody for that matter, find offensive.
  • Comments or actions which expose other Wikipedia editors to persecution by their spouse(s). Violations of this sort may result in a block for an extended period of time which may be applied immediately by any sysop upon discovery. Sysops applying such sanctions should confidentially notify the members of the Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee and Jimbo Wales of what they have done and why do you want to know?
  • Comment on content, not on the contributor.

Alternatives[edit]

Instead, try:

  • Discuss the facts and how to express them without expression, a little diff will do it. Do not discuss the positive attributes of the other party. This does not mean that you have to disagree with the other person, but just agree to disagree.
  • Never suggest a view is valid simply because of who its proponent is.
  • Stick to the content. Do not say I love you; say I love your edit.
  • Explore issues in a less public forum such as an e-mail, valentine, mash note, or love letter if a discussion threatens to become personal.
  • If you know the editor, you may display affection to him/her in person on your spare time, but not on Wikipedia.
  • Comment on content, not on the contributor.

Getting personal while editing[edit]

Remedies[edit]

If you are a victim of a term of endearment, you may remove the term of endearment or may follow the dispute resolution process or both. In extreme cases, the giver may be blocked, though this practice is almost always controversial. Comment on content, not on the contributor. What's the diff?

A misguided notion: "Kissing them while they are down"[edit]

Note: There are certain Wikipedia users who are popular, perhaps because of endearing or attractive behavior in the past. Such users may have been subject to disciplinary actions by the Arbitration Committee. It is only human to imagine that such users might be fair game as recipients of love and affection. This notion is utterly misguided.

Love puppets[edit]

Some editors may become so besotted that they become virtual prisoners of love. In this case, administrators may place a warning on their user page:

Nuvola apps important.svg It is believed that this user may be a Love Puppet of the First Water.
   If this user asks you what you are wearing, refer him to WP:TOE.

Community spirit[edit]

It is your responsibility to foster and maintain a positive online community in Wikipedia. Conveying terms of endearment toward any user — regardless of his/her past behavior — is contrary to this spirit. Comment not on the contributor, rather on the content. Don't do it!