Help:Talk pages

Talk pages (also known as discussion pages) are administration pages where ors can discuss improvements to articles or other Wikipedia pages. The talk page associated with an article is named "Talk:Example", where "Example" is the name of the article. For example, the talk page for discussion of improvements to the article Australia is named Talk:Australia. The talk page associated with a page in another namespace is named by adding "talk" after the namespace label; for example, the talk page for Wikipedia:About is called Wikipedia talk:About.

When viewing an article (or any other non-talk page) on the desktop Wikipedia, a link to the corresponding talk page appears on the "Talk" tab at the top of the page. Click this tab to switch to the talk page. On the mobile Wikipedia, type "Talk:" and the article's name in the search bar. (There are plans to provide easier talk access on mobile.)

User pages also have associated talk pages (for example, User talk:Jimbo Wales for Jimbo Wales' userpage.). When other ors need to contact you, they will usually do this by leaving a message on your talk page. When someone has left you a message that way, you will either see an orange information notice the next time you log in or view a page on Wikipedia if you are ing as an IP address, or a red badge next to your username if you are logged in.

Video introduction[]

Video on how to use a talk page, 2m 30s (8 MB)
This introductory video covers:
  • What are talk pages
  • How to post a new message
  • Indentation
  • Keys to a good discussion
  • Watchlist


Where to find talk pages[]

Location of the talk page tab (here, on the page Encyclopedia)
Location of the article talk page in Wikipedia mobile (Android) app normally appears in more options or at the bottom of the article labelled "View talk page" (here, on the page Giraffe)

When viewing an article (or any other non-talk page), a link to the corresponding talk page appears on the "Talk" tab at the top of the page. (The mobile version has a button at the bottom for logged-in users, while apps may have no link.) Click this tab to switch to the talk page; you can then view the talk page and its history, and it if you want to add a question or comment.

If the "Talk" link is red, it means no talk page has been started yet. Click the red link to begin a talk page for that article and follow the instructions in Starting a new thread below. (It is also possible for a talk page to exist while the corresponding non-talk page is a red link; this often occurs in User space, when a user has received talk page messages but has not started a user page yet.)

To go back to the article page from its talk page, use the leftmost tab at the top of the page, labeled "article". For pages other than articles, this tab may say something different, like "user page" or "project page".

Identifying yourself[]

When you post a message on a talk page you should always sign and date your comment so other ors can follow the thread of the conversation. To do this easily, type four tildes (~~~~) at the end of your comment, or just click the signature button Signature icon april 2018.png on the row of buttons above the box. Once you publish the , this will be automatically converted into a user signature with a link to your user page, your user talk page, and the date and time that you save your . (You can change the form of your signature using your user preferences.)

Code Result
~~~~ Username (talk) 05:41, 28 November 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

If you choose to contribute without logging in, regardless of whether you have an account, you should still sign your posts. In this case your IP address will take the place of your username, and will link to your contributions history.

Starting a new thread[]

The "new section" tab on article talk pages (here, The weather in London) lets you start a new section.

To discuss a topic that's not already covered on the article or user talk page, start a new topic.

A new section can also be started by ing the whole page or an existing section, going to a new line and typing == Heading ==, replacing "Heading" with a suitable title, but make sure to add new discussions at the bottom of the page. A new section automatically adds the heading to the "Contents" box on pages with at least four sections.

Replying to an existing thread[]

To respond to a discussion already in progress:


Indentation is used to keep talk pages readable. Comments are indented using one or more initial colons (:), each colon representing one level of indentation. Each comment should be indented one more level than the comment it replies to, which may or may not be the preceding comment. For example:

Code Result
== Header ==

The first comment in a section has no colons before it. ~~~~

:The reply to the first comment is indented one level. ~~~~
::The reply to the second comment should be indented one more level. ~~~~
::Another reply to the second comment is also indented one more level than the comment being replied to. ~~~~
:A subsequent reply to the first comment is indented one level. ~~~~

The first comment in a section has no colons before it. Editor 1 (talk) 10:44, 21 September 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The reply to the first comment is indented one level. Editor 2 (talk) 16:40, 21 September 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The reply to the second comment should be indented one more level. Editor 1 (talk) 16:57, 23 September 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Another reply to the second comment is also indented one more level than the comment being replied to. Editor 4 (talk) 08:27, 25 September 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
A subsequent reply to the first comment is indented one level. Editor 3 (talk) 03:15, 24 September 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Some pages (deletion discussions, for example) use asterisks (*) rather than colons for indentation. Generally, colons and asterisks should not be mixed; if you see asterisks are being used in a page, use them as well. Complex discussions may mix them (and numbered lists, too); in such a case, avoid mangled list formatting with this simple rule of thumb:

Use the same indentation and list formatting as what you are replying to, plus one level at the end of the indent/list code. E.g., if you are replying to something in a complicated discussion that starts with #:::*, just copy-paste that and add a :, resulting in #:::*: in front of your reply (or use #:::** if you feel it is necessary for your reply to begin with a bullet point).

Avoid placing double line breaks between indented lines of text, since this can create problems for users of screen reader software (see Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Accessibility § Indentation).

If you practice these techniques, be sure to practice on a talk page, such as User talk:your user name/sandbox. The Cascading Style Sheets for talk pages are different from articles, and the visual appearance of list-formatted text can be different. Also, : should not be used for visual indentation in articles, as it is actually markup specifically for description lists. (See Wikipedia:Manual of Style § Indentation for how to indent single lines and blocks of text in articles; for block-quoting, see Wikipedia:Manual of Style § Block quotations.)

Additionally, to ensure clarity in a rapidly-moving or otherwise complex discussion, it is possible to use {{reply to}} to make clear to whom the comment is addressed. This also has the added feature of leaving the other or a notification that you have replied to them.

Reply tool[]

The new 'Reply tool' was turned on for all desktop users, whether logged-in or not, on 7 March 2022. A [reply] link now appears at the end of every signed comment to facilitate posting quick responses to an existing discussion. Any logged-in user can opt out by going to Preferences and deselecting "Enable quick replying" under Discussion pages.

As of August 2022, the Reply tool is not available for mobile users at the English Wikipedia.

Getting started[]

Screenshot of the visual mode
  1. At the end of each signed message, there will be a [reply] link. Click that link to reply to the message. A box will open for your response.
  2. Type your reply in the box. Your signature and the date will be added to your reply automatically.
  3. Ping ors if you need to, by typing @ or clicking on the icon to search for an or's name. No one will be pinged unless you link to a username in your comment or your summary. However, all ors who are subscribed to the thread will be notified of your comment even if you don't ping anyone.
  4. When you are ready to post your response, click the Reply button.



To get help with a specific question you have about subscribing to conversations, please post it here: Talk:Talk pages project.


Notifying other users[]

You can notify other ors in a discussion by linking to their user page in your post. To do this easily you can use the template {{Reply to|Username}}, which renders @Username: For example, to reply and notify Editor 1 you should use the following code:

Code Result

{{reply to|Editor 1}} Message text. ~~~~

@Editor 1: Message text. Username (talk) 10:44, 21 September 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Make sure to sign your post in the same in which you use this template, otherwise it won't work. Note that you cannot directly type the "@" symbol to notify a user, you must use this template or manually create a wikilink to their user page.

You have new messages[]

The message notification as it appears for registered users, in this image by The Editor's Apprentice.

You will be notified when someone else s your user talk page or notifies you with the {{Reply to}} template. Since 30 April 2013, registered users have received this notification through the Wikipedia:Notifications system (see image right); unregistered users still receive notifications with the old-style Orange Bar. Registered users wishing to add back the functionality of the Orange Bar notification may do so through this script.

For users not ing with an account (unregistered users), the alert below is automatically displayed on all pages until you view your user talk page. If you click "new messages" it will direct you to the bottom of your talk page. If you click "last change" it will show you the last made to your talk page.


Subpages and archiving[]

Sometimes particular topics generate a disproportionate amount of traffic on a talk page. It may be decided to remove discussion of those topics to a subpage of the talk page. To do this, create a page titled "Talk:Xxx/Yyy", where "Talk:Xxx" is the name of the main talk page, and "Yyy" indicates the topic of the subpage. Leave a note at the top of the main talk page linking to any subpages.

On talk pages that generate significant amounts of discussion, old discussions are often archived to keep the size of the talk page at a manageable level. This may be done either manually or with the help of a bot. An archive box with links to the discussion archives is normally placed at the top of the current talk page.

Assorted talk page boxes and graphics[]


Sometimes it is necessary to display a sentence or paragraph from the article on the talk page so that other ors can easily understand what is being discussed. An easy way to do this is to use the {{Quote frame}} or {{Quote}} templates:

Use {{Quote frame|Quoted passage from the article.}} to produce:

Quoted passage from the article.

Alternatively, use {{Quote frame |Quoted text |Author |Source}} to produce:

Quoted text
— Author , Source

The {{Quote}} template produces an indented quotation with no box; use {{Quote |Quoted text |''Source''}} to produce:

Quoted text

— Source

Alternatively, use {{Quote|Quoted text |Author |''Source'', page XX}} to add an author and page number:

Quoted text

— Author, Source, page XX

For directly quoting another user, the {{Talkquote}} template places quoted text inside a green box, as in: {{Talkquote |Quoted text |Example |ts=12:00, 01 January 2000 (UTC)}}, which produces:

Quoted text
— User:Example 12:00, 01 January 2000 (UTC)

Boxes – general[]

Plain box (can also be used in article):

Colored box (green – talk page only):

<div class="boilerplate" style="background-color:#efe; margin:2em 0 0 0; padding:0 10px 0 10px; border:1px dotted #aaa;">'''Put copied and pasted quoted text from article here.'''</div>

To keep a list of accompanying references within the container, add the {{reflist-talk}} template immediately before the closing div tag; e.g., {{reflist-talk}}</div>.

Talk page graphics and icons[]

Code Result
{{tick}} checkY
{{done}}  Done
{{yellow tick}} checkY
{{ESp|pd}} Partly done:
{{ESp|n}} Not done:
{{ESp|?}} Not done: it's not clear what changes you want to be made. Please mention the specific changes in a "change X to Y" format.
{{ESp|q}} Question:
{{Not sure| }}
{{Not sure}} Not sure
{{Not sure|Not sure what you mean.}} Not sure what you mean.
{{fixed}} Fixed
[[File:Ambox warning pn.svg|25px|alt=Warning icon]] Warning icon
{{cross}} ☒N
{{outdent}} or {{od}}

Talk page search[]

You can use the Special:Search box below to locate Talk pages. See Help:Searching for more information.

See also[]