Wikipedia:WikiProject User Rehab

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User rehab.svg

What is WikiProject User Rehab? The User Rehab project was created on 2009-05-17 as a way to help editors who have serious behavioral issues, and who may even have been banned, so that they might rehabilitate and gradually be allowed to resume editing. More experienced editors can sign up below to help assist with this project. The goal is to improve the project by allowing editors who show promise in the quality of some of their contributions, but who have had trouble in other areas, to resume editing in a constructive manner.

Project links

Important Update[edit]

It seems no one has made any progress on this WikiProject since September of last year, and it's beginning to become inactive. That would be a massive shame, seeing as it's such a good idea. If no one else is willing to, I've decided to take over this project myself. If you're further up in the hierarchy of this project, please feel free to tell me to get lost, but if no one else is interested in running this genius idea, I will.


We need a system of rehabilitation for potentially good editors who have serious behavioral issues, and who have gotten into serious trouble. We occasionally have a few editors who can make good contributions to the project, but who let their feelings get away with them, and who thus become a liability to the project. They have good potential, but those problems get in the way. Currently some editors are lost to Wikipedia and we need a systematic approach to helping them learn to follow policies and guidelines and edit collaboratively, and to carefully controlling their return to the project. If they can go into "rehabilitation" and be rescued, that would be great. This project is an attempt to develop such a system, using community input to make important consensus decisions in each case. Let's put the project first.

Project development[edit]

Please add your suggestions here.

A few ideas[edit]

  1. The group will only involve itself with editors who have specifically requested its assistance.
  2. The group will have a discussion among its members regarding any request for assistance from the group before accepting any editors to assist.
  3. The group will, after discussion, be able to remove any individuals from the assisted editors group.
  4. Administrator members of the group will not use their administrative tools, including specifically unblocking, reversion of vandalism, page protection, etc., for the benefit of individuals the group is assisting except when such activities are a routine part of regular administrative function. Wherever possible, requests for such assistance will be posted to the appropriate noticeboard or other location instead.
  5. The group will develop specific guidelines for how to deal with situations in which one of the editors it is assisting acts in ways which cause that editor to be blocked, unblocked, banned, topic banned, etc. John Carter (talk) 15:19, 23 May 2009 (UTC)

Steps in rehab process[edit]

These steps are current suggestions and are subject to change. Please add or tweak as needed.

  1. A blocked user applies for help from this project. (So far you can nominate a user here
  2. A subpage is created for the case. (All further work with that candidate for rehab will occur there. Short announcements and notices of progress may be included on the main project page right under the listing of the subpage.)
  3. A mentor(s) is sought (by public invitation from the mentor pool) who is willing to be assigned to this candidate. They will be interviewed on the subpage for their ideas regarding how they intend to deal with the case. If they shows signs of favoritism for the candidate, care should be taken. We don't need mentors who will act as advocates for blocked friends.
  4. The blocking admin(s) and any other interested parties who were involved in the original blocking are contacted. If it is the ArbCom, they will be contacted and involved.
  5. A limited unblock will be sought allowing the candidate to edit their user talk page, which will then be transcluded into the subpage so the editor can take part in the discussion.
  6. The candidate will be interviewed by project members and anyone else from the community as to their reasons why they think they should have their editing privileges restored. They should shows signs of repentance and understanding for the justice of their block. If they are still in denial and are combative, their candidacy may well end at this point. If they shows a willingness to learn and cooperate, then the rehab process may proceed.
  7. The rehab process may involve lengthy discussions with the candidate. Some are between the candidate and their mentor(s), and some are between the candidate and members of the project, or anyone else who cares to participate. A key feature of this project should be openness and involvement of the community.
  8. When the project's members, mentor(s), blocking admin(s), etc. are satisfied that the candidate is ready for provisional restoration of limited editing privileges, then such restoration is sought from the blocking admin(s) and whoever else should be involved in that decision.
  9. Limited editing is allowed under strict supervision. Any problems are immediately reported by the mentor(s) and anyone else who notices them. A reblock or indef ban may be reinstated at any time by the mentor(s) if things aren't working out. If it's only a minor difference of opinion, a limitation of editing to only include the subpage may be reinstated and the rehab process continue there.
  10. Full restoration of editing privileges will only be restored after a special RfC/U, and even then it will be of a probationary nature for a stated length of time, for example six months. The privileges can be removed at any point if the conditions of probation are violated. Such violations will be viewed very negatively and may result in indef bans without possibility of reinstatement using the Rehab Project. This project will not allow itself to be gamed and the community's trust in this process must not be jeopardized.
  11. Ideas please! Let's keep brainstorming. These are uncharted waters and we need creative thinking.

Conditions for getting help from this project[edit]

Banned or blocked editors must meet certain conditions before we can help them. The community or ArbCom has sanctioned them for bad behavior and they must be considered trustworthy before readmission to Wikipedia. We are not interested in wasting our time or helping banned editors game the system. Here are a few conditions:

  1. Must be capable of understanding our policies and guidelines.
  2. Must be willing to collaborate with editors who hold opposing POV.
  3. Must be favorable to the concept of writing for the enemy.
  4. Must understand the (tongue-in-cheek) goals of the Rouge admins, and be willing to help them uphold our policies and guidelines.
  5. Must be willing to submit themselves to mentorship from experienced editors. They are in a learning school designed to help them see the error of their ways.
  6. Must have good potential, demonstrated by editing histories.
  7. Their personal POV is immaterial. We help editors of all POV.
  8. Any individuals who seek help from this group must first receive the consent of the membership of the group.
  9. The group will itself have no responsibility for the independent actions of the editor receiving assistance from it, nor will the members of the group necessarily feel any obligation to the assisted editor in terms of unblocking them, defending them from reasonable questions regarding their conduct, etc.

Feel free to develop this.

Thoughts on potential candidates and mentorship[edit]

This project will hopefully be so strict such that users wouldn't pass the muster without radical reform. This is designed only for banned editors who really wish to return, AND who have seen the error of their ways and are willing to radically reform. Too many jerks have been given second, third, fourth, and fifth chances, and this isn't what this project is about. This has nothing to do with such misunderstood kindness. Only experienced users will be mentors, preferably with mentoring experience, so the existing mentorship process will continue, except that the mentors who choose to help here will be dealing with banned editors, while the current mentorship system usually deals with anyone who voluntarily wishes advice, or on whom mentorship has been imposed as an alternative to being banned. Nothing is set in stone here, and we might change this at some future date, but these are the starting conditions of the project.

Candidates for rehabilitation[edit]

Each candidate will be assigned their own subpage, which will be listed below. Everything about their case will be conducted and discussed on that subpage.


Case:User Greg park avenue[edit]

  • Under discussion:
  • Currently waiting for a response from Greg park avenue. -- Brangifer (talk) 05:24, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Announcements and developments in case.
  • News regarding progress of case.
  • Appeals for help with case.

Case:User BlaBlaBla[edit]

This is a sample template and link to use for new cases. Just use the real username.

  • Under discussion
  • Announcements and developments in case.
  • News regarding progress of case.
  • Appeals for help with case.

Project supporters and mentors[edit]

Please add your name if you are willing to support this project. When filling out the table below, please be brief. Signing here in no way obligates you to do anything more than show your support for the idea. There will be a need for help in various forms, and when those needs become apparent it will be convenient to have a list of supporters we can contact. If you believe you have skills or experience that will be beneficial, please let us know. Your advice, visions, and constructive criticisms are welcome on the talk page. Please help this project become a force for good, and help to ensure that it avoids the pitfalls which some failed projects may have had.

The role of administrators as mentors has been discussed here. The roles of non-admin supporters of the project will become more clear as various needs arise. Members here will determine this and welcome advice on the subject.

Potential mentors should keep in mind that the candidates for rehabilitation aren't editors who need ordinary mentoring and advice, but editors who have been blocked or banned, IOW they have already gotten into serious trouble for behavioral issues. They don't need mentors who become advocates to plead their cause, but advisers who place respect for our policies and the good of Wikipedia above the desires of the candidate, since it is the job of the candidate to adapt to Wikipedia, not to demand that Wikipedia accommodate them as they are. The mentors represent Wikipedia, not the candidate. Their job is to teach and advise the candidate, not to coddle them.


You are encouraged to place the project's userbox on your userpage. If you wish to do so, just copy this template code:

{{Wikipedia:Wikiproject User Rehab/Icon}}
National Mentoring Month Logo
This user is a participant of the WikiProject User Rehab

Recruitment invitation[edit]

Here is an invitation that can be copied and used on user talk pages or other places. (This can be tweaked and adapted as you wish. Be creative!):

== [[Wikipedia:WikiProject User Rehab|WikiProject User Rehab]] ==
Would you be interested in joining this project? We need more editors who share a burden for rescuing promising editors who have gotten into serious trouble because of behavioral issues. '''IF''' (a fundamental condition!) they are interested in reforming and adapting to our standards of conduct, and are also willing to abide by our policies and guidelines and cooperate with others, we can offer to help them return to Wikipedia as constructive editors. We should offer them a proper way to return. If you think this is a good idea, please join us. ~~~~

List of project supporters[edit]

User name Talk page Why you're here Special skills Additional comments Admin? (yes/no) Are you willing to help mentor? (yes/no)
Brangifer Talk Development of this project Let's brainstorm! No
Abce2 Talk To help make old vandals constructive editors Welcoming and fighting vandalism I really hope this works! No, and I may be busy Yes
Jojhutton Talk To help in rehab efforts Looks like a promising project. No
T'Shael talk To help as much as I can Looks to be a promising project. No
7 Talk I have limited time, but always willing to help out. I think this is an interesting idea, and am cautiously optimistic that we can create the success that Xeno has seen. No
PMDrive1061 Talk A marvelous idea and long overdue. I've had a hand in helping reform problematic users and I'd appreciate the opportunity to help again. Given the sheer numbers coming onto this site who are blown away at the notion of being able to actually change the content, perhaps this is the proactive approach necessary to bring promising indiviuals down off the "gee, what fun this software is" and onto a more positive tack. Yes
Juliancolton Talk Same as everybody else, I suppose. Yes
ZooFari Talk I love counseling. I might also redesign things around here :)
I Seek To Help & Repair! Talk I love to help people, and improve the Wikipedia No
Sceptre Talk I'm annoyed at bans of users precluding the improvement of the encyclopedia. No.
Justmeherenow talk Viva constructive chaos! (Believers in the "truth" of whatever contentious topic' dominant strain of opinion generally hold nonbelievers as "trolls." Whereas I believe either pole is usually "false" in comparison to the dynamic tension between both poles, which itself produces the very testing necessary to work toward better approximations of actual truth....) (Whenever sincere sowers of doubt have been railroaded off WPædia merely for engaging in either side of whatever issue's polemics, I'm all for helping these folks reintegrate into the community.) That is, I'm willing to put in my 2¢ whenever/wherever I can! No
Verbal Talk I believe in the redemption of the individual (quoting Miss Marple, quoting the bible...) No
Crohnie Talk I think this project can be an asset to the project. No
Lychosis Talk I just think that near everyone deserves a second chance, with a little guidance. No
Coppertwig Talk To help make Wikipedia welcoming, straighten out misunderstandings, help people collaborate and expand the number of people productively contributing All users with editing privileges are welcome to post questions on my talk page about how to edit Wikipedia, how to resolve disputes with other users, etc. I can also be contacted via the Wikipedia email function. I may be away, for example on wikibreak Monday to Thursday every week for several weeks. No
Jeff G. talk To help as much as I can Looks to be a promising project. No
John Carter Talk There clearly are editors who could use a bit of help, officially or unofficially. I might be one of them. However, at times, there may be no specific individual who may be able to offer the kind of support such individuals need. Having a group of such editors available to offer assistance as required might be the best option for such individuals. Yes Not right now, some might argue I have a tendency to overstretch myself as is. They're probably right.
RatónBat Talk I don't want vandals, i want editors, we should change them of side!. Welcoming Maybe vandals will ignor us, but we have to try! No
SmokeyJoe Talk Development of this project. Development of an underlying knowledge base Some real life study and experience in related areas Responding to difficult but good faith contributors is one of Wikipedia's weaker points. No

McDoobAU93 Talk Support the project by helping potentially good editors get back on good graces and learn how to work with others to make the Wikipedia Project the best resource it can be. Patience; I don't bite. I prefer to be constructive, instead. On US east coast, frequently online editing/monitoring. No Yes
Netalarm Talk I'd like to help out with problem users. (Also active at WP:Abuse and Mediation Cabal. Organization, communication, patience, and willing to understand their viewpoint. Liking this idea! No Yes
PCHS-NJROTC talk Something to do other than vandal patrol. Effort to demonstrate more WP:WikiLove and less WP:WikiHate. Two years experience at WP Probably won't be very active for a while, planning a semi-wikibreak due to issues in real life No Not now, probably later
ZooPro Talk I seem to come across alot of troubled editors who need a little bit of guidence. I am a WikiProject Coordinator so have some experience in conflict resolution Will be semi active, if you are in need of help let me know No Yes
Tommy2010 Talk Being involved fighting vandalism constantly, it only makes sense to help users who may have screwed up in the past. I believe by helping these users, it only helps WP grow. Vandal fighter/Huggle. none No Yes- send a message on my talk page.
RDN1F Talk Vandals are so annoying and there is so much potential in this idea I would love to be involved Fighting vandalism/getting to know vandals and be friendly I would love to get involved!! No Yes
Deathlaser Talk To help as much as I possibly can! Stiki user, Rollbacker  :) No Yes, of course I am!

Username Talk Why you're here. Special skills Additional comments Admin? (yes/no) Are you willing to help mentor? (yes/no)

Appeal from Wikiproject User Rehab[edit]

(Copy of appeal at Admins Noticeboard)

"Men wanted for hazardous journey. Low wages, bitter cold, long hours of complete darkness. Safe return doubtful. Honour and recognition in event of success." Ernest Shackleton

Well, okay, it's not quite that bad ;-)

Current needs:

  • Mentors who are experienced at dealing with difficult cases.
  • Admins who are willing to give advice and help.
  • ArbCom members.....ditto

We would very much appreciate the participation of more mentors, admins, and ArbCom members, especially since this project intends to be dealing with banned editors. This may often require extra careful forms of mentoring. We aren't interested in being gamed, as has been attempted by some banned users and socks. So far it's been relatively easy stuff to deal with, but we could risk that sneaky banned users will attempt to get back into Wikipedia through this process. We would like to AGF with everyone, but we know that AGF can only be stretched so far, and that editors with these types of serious problems may include those who will pretend anything in order to "get back in". Are you interested in getting involved, even just as observers who can give occasional advice, in a new project that is working in uncharted territory? Your help, experience and wisdom will be appreciated.

List of potential mentors[edit]

These are users who have adopted other users, and some of them may be willing to function as mentors:

The only way to find out is ask them.


How about a few templates? I (user:7) would be willing to take a first crack at creating a template for simplifying actions on this page, (e.g. proposing users to be rehabbed, (a la WP:COIN), assigning users to their mentors, closing cases, etc...) Probably also need another template for notification on a users talk page or perhaps notifications to be placed at the top of their user page / talk page.
Something like:

  • {{rehab|username}} for proposing new users
  • {{rehab|ack}} - acknowledged proposal — project team is investigating
  • {{rehab|assigned}} - assigned to a mentor
  • {{rehab|reformed}} - user has been reformed
  • {{rehab|closed}} - issue closed
  • {{uw-rehab}} - warning template for them to signup for rehab
  • {{User in rehab}} - at the top of their talk page and user page to notify others of their status


  • Each subpage (and any other project pages) will need a Project Rehab template at the top with important project links. The template needs to be developed.

Please begin to create some templates. They can be tweaked as the need arises.

Draft Templates

Feel free to improve them!

See also[edit]