This page offers some principles of etiquette, also referred to as "Wikiquette", on how to work with others on Wikipedia.

Wikipedia's contributors come from many different countries and cultures. We have many different views, perspectives, opinions, and backgrounds, sometimes varying widely. Treating others with respect is key to collaborating effectively in building an international online encyclopedia.

Principles of Wikipedia etiquette[]

Avoid indirect criticism[]

Avoid use of unexplained scare quotes and other means of implying criticism or making indirect criticism when you are writing in comments and talk pages. Write clearly, plainly and concisely in a way that enables other ors to easily respond to you.

Keep in mind that sarcasm cannot easily be conveyed in writing and may be misinterpreted. Insinuation, double entendre should be avoided when expressing constructive criticism. This also helps the or receiving criticism to correctly understand you and respond to your concerns and may particularly help ors for whom English is not a first language or who have trouble understanding written English.

When this style of communication is necessary in the interest of being concise or illustrative, it is best to explain the intended meaning of your use of scare quotes or other indirection immediately afterward.

Of course criticism communicated in any manner and concerning any subject must be civil, should assume good faith as described in the relevant guideline, should not constitute biting of newcomers, and should comply with other Wikipedia policies and guidelines. If directed generally towards an or's behavior or other aspects of talk page commentary, criticism must not constitute a personal attack as described in the "no personal attacks" policy. See also the essay "Avoid personal remarks" for a viewpoint on the latter form of criticism.

How to avoid abuse of talk pages[]

Working towards a neutral point of view[]

When dealing with suspected violations of Wikipedia:Neutral point of view:

  1. Inquire politely on the article's talk page about aspects of the article you consider non-NPOV (unless they are really egregious), and suggest replacements.
  2. If no reply comes, make the substitutions. (Use your watchlist to keep track of what you want to do.)
  3. If a reply comes, try to agree about the wording to be used. That way, when an agreement is reached, an war is very unlikely. This has the disadvantage that the article stays in an unsatisfying state for a longer period, but an article that changes frequently does not create a good impression with other Wikipedians or of the project as a whole.

A few things to bear in mind[]

Other words of advice[]

Parting words of advice from Larry Sanger:[1]

For more advice of a similar nature, see User:Kingturtle/WikiPrinciples.

See also[]

Policies and guidelines
Other related pages


  1. ^ Posted by Larry Sanger on his user page on February 14, 2003