SmashWiki:Quietly deal with vandals

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Policy.png This page documents an official SmashWiki policy, a widely accepted standard that all users should follow. When editing this page, please ensure that your revision reflects consensus. If in doubt, consider discussing changes on the talk page.
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Summary[edit]

Details[edit]

Vandals, trolls, and other obviously malicious users feed on attention. Warnings and threats will not stop them. Posting anything that acknowledges their actions on their talk pages only challenges them to keep going, giving them a good time and treating it as a game, trying to bait other users into coming after them. When dealing with disruptive edits, keep in mind the following.

What to do first[edit]

  1. Remember to assume good faith when possible. If an IP/account makes a single edit that screws up an article somehow, try to imagine if someone completely new to wiki may have accidentally saved some stuff while experimenting around (or blanking a section, etc.). If so, kindly point them to the Sandbox, and explain how their edits may have been viewed as disruptive. You may also want to point them to the "Show preview" button. This is sufficient for most new users.
  2. If an edit is obviously nonsense or vandalism judging from the language used in the edit, just quietly revert it without making a fuss.

What to do afterwards[edit]

  1. If an IP/account is repeatedly making disruptive edits, keep up the reverts, and notify an administrator via the admin noticeboard.
  2. If a vandal starts a discussion in reply to a message to an admin, politely and succinctly explain why the notice is there.

What not to do[edit]

  1. Do not troll the talk pages of vandals under any circumstances, even if you yourself were a target for vandalism. This only provokes them and brings you down to their level.
  2. Do not dignify those who are trolling with a response at all, even if it is on your own talk page - that is exactly what they wish for. Don't play into their hands.
  3. In regards to suspected sockpuppetry - In all but the most obvious cases, treat each IP/account as a unique person. We cannot actually know if they are the same people. Some vandals might simply claim to be the same as a previous vandal just for fun and for the sake of building up a reputation (i.e. fame). By treating each IP/account on a case-by-case basis, we rob them of that fun.
  4. Do not get into lengthy discussions over whether vandals and trolls can or cannot be banned. If they have a problem, they can contact an admin directly and discuss it.
  5. If you come across a page that is clearly and without any doubt vandalism, spam, or a joke page, immediately tag it with {{d}} and move along. Do not create a talk page for it unless the deletion is at all contested, as this may just spur the page's creator to respond aggressively against their page's deletion, and will simply be another page that an admin has to delete.
  6. Do not get into a debate with other users over any technicality, interpretation, accusation, or any other aspect of a block - it only serves to create unnecessary drama and give attention to the accused. The admins made the block; it is best to leave any discussion of it to them.
    1. Corollary: If you disagree with a block on someone else, clearly and concisely explain the situation and your point of view in a single post at the admin noticeboard, and optionally leave a note on the blocking admin's talk page pointing to your post. If necessary, you may also contact other admins who are online.

Notes[edit]

  • When reminding other users about this policy, please do so on their own talk page, instead of the (potential) vandal's talk page.

See also[edit]