Wikipedia:Update/1/Enforcement policy changes, December 2008 to June 2009

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June 2009
  • Wikipedia:Administrators
    • In WP:ADMIN#No big deal, removed "A modern clarification of this statement as of 2009 would be to say that while the correct use of the tools and appropriate conduct is considered very important, being an administrator should not be considered a big deal."


  • Wikipedia:Appealing a block
    • In WP:APPEAL#Appeal to the Arbitration Committee, changed "... they should contact a member of the committee or an Arbitration clerk by email and ask that a request be filed on their behalf. Generally speaking, the banned user will make the request on his or her talk page, which will be copied to WP:RFAR by a clerk. In some cases, a banned user may be unblocked for the sole purpose of filing an appeal. In such cases, editing of other pages is grounds for immediate re-blocking." to "... they should contact the Ban Appeals Subcommittee via email at {{NoSpamEmail|arbcom-l|lists.wikimedia.org}} to have their case reviewed. Banned users may also contact an Arbitration Clerk via email for assistance with this process."





  • Wikipedia:Protection policy
    • In the lead section, changed [Changes to a protected page should be ... carried out] "once there is consensus to do so." to "if they are uncontroversial or if there is consensus for them."
    • Added to WP:PROT#Full protection: "The edit tab for a protected page is replaced by a "view source" tab, where users can view and copy, but not edit, the wikitext of that page." Also added, in line with the change in the lead section, "or if the change is uncontroversial".
    • Added to WP:PROT#Content disputes: "Since protecting the most current version sometimes rewards edit warring by establishing a contentious revision," [administrators may also revert to an old version of the page predating the edit war if such a clear point exists.] Also, changed "changes unrelated to the dispute" to "changes which are uncontroversial".
    • Added to WP:PROT#Semi-protection: "Such [non-autoconfirmed] users can request edits to a semi-protected page by proposing them on its talk page, using the {{editsemiprotected}} template if necessary to gain attention."
    • Shortened WP:PROT#User pages, and converted it to a level-two heading
May 2009


  • Wikipedia:Banning policy
    • Changed [indefinitely site-banned users] "are not permitted" to "may be restricted" [from editing their user talk page or using e-mail if they are disruptive.]
    • Added: [Indefinitely site-banned users] "may" [lose the right to edit any page].
    • Added to See also: Wikipedia:Editing restrictions




  • Wikipedia:Policies and guidelines
    • Added some waffling to lead section: "... policies should be generally, but not always, followed before guidelines, and guidelines before processes."
    • Added: [Policies and guidelines] "apply to all editors."
    • Added to WP:POL#Policy and guideline pages: [If a guideline appears to conflict with a policy, then the policy should] "in most cases" [take precedence over the guideline.] "However, this does not mean that it is appropriate to ignore guidelines simply because they are guidelines; like the policies, they exist for good reasons."
    • In WP:POL#Changes to guideline and policy pages, changed "Policies and guidelines are supposed to state what most Wikipedians agree upon, and should be phrased to reflect the present consensus on a subject." to "Policies and guidelines state what most Wikipedians agree upon, and should reflect the present consensus on a subject."
    • In WP:POL#How are policies enforced?, added: "Although all editors therefore have an equal say over the content of our articles ..."


  • Wikipedia:Protection policy
    • Moved up "Semi-protection should not be used as a pre-emptive measure against vandalism that has not yet occurred, nor should it be used solely to prevent editing by anonymous and newly registered users."
    • Added link to Wikipedia:Rough guide to semi-protection.
    • Removed "The essay Wikipedia:Rough guide to semi-protection contains further information."
    • Added subsection, WP:PROT#Deceased users: "In the event of the confirmed death of a user then their user page, but not their talk page, should be fully protected as detailed at Wikipedia:Deceased Wikipedians/Guidelines."
    • In WP:PROT#Permanent protection, added "usually permanently protected" to the examples [main page, etc.]
    • In WP:PROT#Creation protection, changed "Non-existent pages may be protected, for limited periods of time, if they are repeatedly re-created after deletion in line with the deletion policy. Administrators may apply protection to non-existent pages with the same procedure as with all other pages. ... Administrators should not use creation protection as a pre-emptive measure, but only in response to actual events." to: "Administrators can also prevent the creation of a page through the protection dialog. This is useful for articles that have been deleted but repeatedly recreated by an editor. ... Administrators should avoid using creation protection as a pre-emptive measure, as it is intended to be a response to actual events."
April 2009
  • Wikipedia:Banning policy
    • Added to WP:BAN#User pages: "indefinitely site- [banned users are not permitted to edit their user and user talk pages.]"
    • Added to WP:BAN#Site bans: "An indefinitely site- [banned user loses the right to edit any page of the project, including their talkpage]."





  • Wikipedia:Protection policy
    • Added to WP:PROTECT#User pages: "Users whose talk page are semi-protected for lengthy or indefinite periods of time should have an unprotected user talk subpage linked conspicuously from their main talk page to allow good faith comments from non-autoconfirmed users."
    • Removed from WP:PROTECT#Move protection: "If a protected page is moved by an administrator, the page will be protected at the new location, but the redirect remaining at the original location will not be protected."
    • Added to WP:PROTECT#Cascading protection: "[This includes images and other media] that are hosted on English Wikipedia. Files stored on Commons will not be protected by cascading protection, and need to be temporarily uploaded to English Wikipedia or protected at Commons." Also, "Cascading protection is not instantaneous, and can take hours to kick in. See Bugzilla:18483 for more information."
March 2009


  • Wikipedia:Banning policy
    • Changed: "[If the banned editor is the only contributor to the page or its talk page, speedy deletion is] invariably correct" to "probably correct".





  • Wikipedia:Policies and guidelines
    • Changed "Policies and guidelines express standards that have community consensus. Both need to be approached with common sense: adhere to the spirit rather than the letter of the rules, and be prepared to ignore the rules on the rare occasions when they conflict with the goal of improving the encyclopedia. Those who edit in good faith, are civil, seek consensus, and work towards the goal of creating a great encyclopedia should find a welcoming environment." to:
"... our processes are routine methods to serve the above policies and guidelines. Policies and guidelines describe standards that have community consensus, and indeed consensus is itself a core policy and philosophy. Those who adhere to neutral point of view, are civil to and assume good faith in others, seek consensus in discussions, and work towards the goal of creating an increasingly better written and more comprehensive encyclopedia should find a very welcoming environment. Policies need to be approached with common sense; adhere to the spirit rather than the letter of the rules, and be prepared to "ignore all rules" on the rare occasions when they conflict with the goal of improving the encyclopedia."


February 2009



  • Wikipedia:Blocking policy
    • Added to WP:BLOCK#Block reviews: "If a user claims they wish to contribute constructively but there are doubts as to their sincerity, the {{2nd chance}} template can be used to allow them to demonstrate how they will contribute to the encyclopedia should their unblock request be granted."




  • Wikipedia:Protection policy
    • Added to "User talk pages are usually not semi-protected": "except in response to severe or continued vandalism"
    • Added after "protection should not be considered an endorsement of the current name": "An obvious exception to this rule is when pages are protected due to page move vandalism."
January 2009




"Consensus" among a small number of editors can never override the community consensus that is presented in Wikipedia's policies and guidelines; instead, consensus is the main tool for enforcing these standards. The focus of every dispute should be determining how best to comply with the relevant policies and guidelines. Editors have reached consensus when they agree that they have appropriately applied Wikipedia's policies and guidelines, not when they personally like the outcome.
    • Added to WP:CON#Reasonable consensus-building: "To ensure transparency, consensus cannot be formed except on Wikipedia discussion pages. "Off-wiki" discussions, such as those taking place on other websites, on web forums or on IRC, are not taken into account when determining consensus."
    • In WP:CON#Consensus can change, changed "changes are sometimes reasonable" to "one must realize that such changes are often reasonable."
    • Added: "But in all these cases, nothing is permanently fixed. The world changes, and the wiki must change with it. It is reasonable and indeed often desirable to make further changes to things at a later date, even if the last change was years ago."


  • Wikipedia:Policies and guidelines
    • Added to WP:POL#Making a proposal: "[Add the {{Proposed}} template to the top of your page] or {{Promote}} if the page has already existed."
    • WP:POL#Proposing demotion of guidelines or policies changed to WP:POL#Proposing change to guideline or policy status, with corresponding changes throughout the section
    • In WP:POL#Changes to guideline and policy pages, changed: "Minor edits to existing pages, such as formatting changes, grammatical improvement and uncontentious clarification, may be made by any editor at any time. However, changes that would alter the substance of policy or guidelines should normally be announced on the appropriate talk page first. The change may be implemented if no objection is made to it or if discussion shows that there is consensus for the change." to "Policies and guidelines are supposed to state what most Wikipedians agree upon, and should be phrased to reflect the present consensus on a subject. Minor edits to existing pages, such as formatting changes, grammatical improvement and uncontentious clarification, may be made by any editor at any time. However, changes that would alter the substance of policy or guidelines should normally be announced on the appropriate talk page first. The change may be implemented if no objection is made to it or if discussion shows that there is consensus for the change. If there is no consensus for a given text, old or new, it should not be asserted as though it were consensus; possibilities include silence on the issue and acknowledgement that editors disagree on the point."
    • Removed "Overuse of these tags, particularly {{disputedtag}}, is considered disruptive. They may not be used as badges of shame or expressions of personal dislike, and they should be removed when active discussion ends or when it appears unlikely that any substantial change will be accepted. It is unlikely to be appropriate to place a {{disputedtag}} on a long-established page or section, since silence is considered to indicate consensus, whatever procedures may have been followed when the original change was made. The stability of major policies and guidelines is important to editors involved in the Wikipedia:Featured articles process and other areas of editing. Edit warring is particularly deprecated in this area."
    • Added: "Like all editing tools, these can be overused, and be disruptive; please be sure that these are marking a real dispute."


  • Wikipedia:Protection policy
    • In WP:PROT#Semi-protection, added: "[... administrators may apply temporary semi-protection on pages that are:] Subject to edit-warring where all parties involved are anonymous or new editors (i.e. in cases in which full-protection would otherwise be applied). This does not apply when autoconfirmed users are involved."
    • Sentence fragment added: "Although administrators may also choose to change the block settings to block the user from editing their talk page instead, since there is no need to synchronize the block period with the page protection time period with this method."
    • In WP:PROT#User pages, added "and subpages" and "not fully protected".
December 2008
In November 2008, the Arbitration Committee passed a motion which stated that administrators are prohibited from reversing or overturning (explicitly or in substance) any action taken by another administrator pursuant to the terms of an active arbitration remedy, and explicitly noted as being taken to enforce said remedy, except:
(a) with the written authorization of the Committee, or
(b) following a clear, substantial, and active community consensus to do so.


  • WP:Blocking policy
    • New section, WP:Blocking policy#Dealing with off-wiki block requests: "... except where there is an urgent situation and no reasonable administrator could disagree with an immediate block (e.g. ongoing vandalism or serious BLP violations), the appropriate response for an administrator asked on IRC to block an editor is to refer the requester to the appropriate on-wiki noticeboard."