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Comment Please note, this is not the place to post notices of vandalism.
Persistent vandals may be listed at Wikipedia:Administrator intervention against vandalism

Bysen:Policy Bysen:Nutshell


Æfwyrdla (n.eng. Vandalism) is ǣnig ēaca, ofānimung, oþþe wendung innunge, þe man in geeahtodum onginne macode, tō forbrecenne þā onwealhnesse Wicipǣdian. Þā gemǣnostan æfwyrdlancynn sind ætēaca bismerworda oþþe ceorlisces gliges, trametāþīerrung, oþþe insettung gedofes in þā gewritu.

Any good-faith effort to improve the encyclopedia, even if misguided or ill-considered, is not vandalism. Even harmful edits that are not explicitly made in bad faith are not considered vandalism. For example, adding a personal opinion to an article once is not vandalism — it's just not helpful, and should be removed or restated. Not all vandalism is obvious, nor are all massive or controversial changes vandalism. Careful attention needs to be given to whether changes made are beneficial, detrimental but well intended, or outright vandalism.

Committing blatant vandalism violates Wikipedia policy. If you find that another user has vandalized Wikipedia, you should revert the changes and warn the user (see below for specific instructions). Users who vandalize Wikipedia repeatedly, despite warnings to stop, should be reported to Wikipedia:Administrator intervention against vandalism, and administrators may block them.

How to respond to vandalism[adiht fruman]

If you see vandalism, please do the following:

  1. Check the article's page history to identify all vandalism edits. Usually, if the most recent edit by a particular user is vandalism, then all recent edits by that user are also vandalism. It is then necessary to revert to the last version before that user started editing. It is also prudent to compare a substantially earlier (unvandalized) version with the current, as editors may have missed a substantial deletion (a whole paragraph or section) followed by a rude remark. A novice editor may have then simply edited the remark out without checking the history. A reversion to that point followed by re-insertion of non-trivial edits may be appropriate or the missing section may be moved via cut-and-paste operations within your browser.
    1. For a new article, if all versions of the article are pure vandalism, mark it for speedy deletion by tagging it with {{ db-vandalism}}.
    2. Otherwise, revert the edits. If you are viewing the diff between the current version and the preceding version, you can click "undo" to undo the edit automatically. Otherwise, please explain in the edit summary that you have reverted vandalism.
    3. To make vandalism reverts easier, you can ask for the rollback feature to be enabled for your registered Wikipedia account. Intended strictly for use to revert vandalism only, this will enable you to revert recent edits with a single click. See Wikipedia:Requests for rollback (WP:RFR).
  2. Leave a warning message on the user's talk page For a trivial "test" edit issue a {{test1}} template. For nonsense and rude remarks remarks issue a {{test2}} template. Higher levels than test2 are appropriate for use by admins with blocking power.
  3. Check the vandal's other contributions (click "User contributions" on the left sidebar of the screen).
  4. If the vandal continues to cause disruption after being warned, please report him or her at Wikipedia:Administrator intervention against vandalism. An administrator will decide whether to block the vandal.

For repeated vandalism by an anonymous IP address, it is helpful to take the following additional steps:

  1. Trace the IP address (cf. and add {{whois|Name of owner}} to the user talk page of the address. If it appears to be a Shared IP address, add {{SharedIP|Name of owner}} or {{SharedIPEDU|Name of owner}}
  2. For repetitive anonymous vandalism, particularly where registered to a school or other kind of responsive ISP, consider listing it on Wikipedia:Abuse reports.

How not to respond to vandalism[adiht fruman]

  1. Do not feed the trolls
  2. Do not nominate an article for deletion because it is being vandalized. That's like throwing the baby out with the bathwater, and simply empowers vandals further.

Warnings[adiht fruman]

Warnunge bisena
PageName is þīnes āgenan dōmes
  • {{subst:uw-vandalism1|PageName}} ~~~~ (unintentional vandalism/test)
  • {{subst:uw-delete1|PageName}} ~~~~ (ætnimung þǣre innunge būtan ingehygdnesse)
  • {{subst:uw-vandalism2|PageName}} ~~~~ (suitable for nonsense)
  • {{subst:uw-delete2|PageName}} ~~~~ (variant for removal of content)
  • {{subst:uw-vandalism3|PageName}} ~~~~ (please stop)
  • {{subst:uw-delete3|PageName}} ~~~~ (please stop removing content)
  • {{subst:uw-vandalism4|PageName}} ~~~~ (endemeste warnung)
  • {{subst:uw-delete4|PageName}} ~~~~ (endemeste warnung ymbe ætnimunge innunge)

See additional templates and examples of output

Note: Do not use these templates in content disputes; instead, write a clear message explaining your disagreement.

There are several templates used to warn vandals. They are listed at right according to the nature and severity of the vandalism. Though some people vandalizing are incorrigible returning vandals and may be blocked quickly, vandals can be stopped by a simple warning and go on to become productive contributors. If you are not certain that an edit is vandalism, always start with Bysen:Tls. Conversely, if you are confident that a user is aware of the disruption he is causing, you may start with a stronger warning such as Bysen:Tls or Bysen:Tls.

For a full list of user warning templates, see Wikipedia:Template messages/User talk namespace.

Tracing IP addresses[adiht fruman]

The owners of IP addresses can be found using:

If an address is not in one registry, it will probably be in another.

Types of vandalism[adiht fruman]

Wikipedia vandalism may fall into one or more of the following categorizations:

Type Description
Blanking Removing all or significant parts of pages' content without any reason, or replacing entire pages with nonsense. Sometimes important verifiable references are deleted with no valid reason(s) given in the summary. However, significant content removals are usually not considered to be vandalism where the reason for the removal of the content is readily apparent by examination of the content itself, or where a non-frivolous explanation for the removal of apparently legitimate content is provided, linked to, or referenced in an edit summary.

An example of blanking edits that could be legitimate would be edits that blank all or part of a biography of a living person. Wikipedia is especially concerned about providing accurate and non-biased information on the living, and this may be an effort to remove inaccurate or biased material. Due to the possibility of unexplained good-faith content removal, {{uw-test1}} or {{uw-delete1}}, as appropriate, should normally be used as initial warnings for ordinary content removals not involving any circumstances that would merit stronger warnings.

Page lengthening Adding very large (measured by the number of bytes) amounts of content to a page so as to make the page's load time abnormally long or even make the page impossible to load on some computers.
Spam Continuing to add external links to non-notable or irrelevant sites (e.g. to advertise one's website) to pages after having been warned is vandalism.


A script or "robot" that attempts to vandalize or spam massive numbers of articles (hundreds or thousands).
Silly vandalism Adding profanity, graffiti, random characters, or other nonsense to pages; creating nonsensical and obviously non-encyclopedic pages, etc. Please note that the addition of random characters to pages is a common way that new users test edit and may not be intentionally malicious.
Sneaky vandalism Vandalism that is harder to spot. This can include adding plausible misinformation to articles, (e.g. minor alteration of dates), hiding vandalism (e.g. by making two bad edits and only reverting one), or reverting legitimate edits with the intent of hindering the improvement of pages. Some vandals even use edit summaries such as "rv vandalism" to mask their changes.
Userspace vandalism Adding insults, profanity, etc. to user pages or user talk pages (see also Wikipedia:No personal attacks).
Image vandalism Uploading shock images, inappropriately placing explicit images on pages, or simply using any image in a way that is disruptive. Please note though that Wikipedia is not censored for the protection of minors and that explicit images may be uploaded and/or placed on pages for legitimate reasons.
Abuse of tags Bad-faith placing of {{afd}}, {{delete}}, {{sprotected}}, or other tags on pages that do not meet such criteria. This includes removal of long-standing {{policy}} and related tags without forming consensus on such a change first.
Page-move vandalism Changing the names of pages (referred to as "page-moving") to disruptive or otherwise inappropriate terms. Wikipedia now only allows registered users active for at least four days to move pages.
Link vandalism Modifying internal or external links within a page so that they appear the same but link to a page/site that they are not intended to (e.g an explicit image; a shock site).
Avoidant vandalism Removing {{afd}}, {{copyvio}} and other related tags in order to conceal deletion candidates or avert deletion of such content. Note that this is often mistakenly done by new users who are unfamiliar with AfD procedures and such users should be given the benefit of the doubt and pointed to the proper page to discuss the issue.
Modifying users' comments Editing other users' comments to substantially change their meaning (e.g. turning someone's vote around), except when removing a personal attack (which is somewhat controversial in and of itself). Signifying that a comment is unsigned is an exception. Please also note that correcting other users' typos is discouraged.
Discussion page vandalism Blanking the posts of other users from talk pages other than your own, Wikipedia space, and other discussions, aside from removing internal spam, vandalism, etc., is generally considered vandalism. An obvious exception is moving posts to a proper place (e.g. protection requests to WP:RFPP). Removing personal attacks is often considered legitimate, and it is considered acceptable to archive an overly long talk page by creating an archive page and moving the text from the main talk page there. Note: The above rules do not apply to a user's own talk page. Editors are granted considerable latitude over editing their own userspace pages (including talk pages), and blanking one's own user talk page is specifically not prohibited. A policy of prohibiting users from removing warnings from their own talk pages was considered and rejected on the grounds that it would create more issues than it would solve.
Repeated uploading of copyrighted material Uploading or using material on Wikipedia in ways which violate Wikipedia's copyright policies after having been warned is vandalism. Because users may be unaware that the information is copyrighted, or of Wikipedia policies on how such material may and may not be used, such action only becomes vandalism if it continues after the copyrighted nature of the material and relevant policy restricting its use have been communicated to the user.
Malicious account creation Creating accounts with usernames that contain deliberately offensive or disruptive terms is considered vandalism, whether the account is used or not. For Wikipedia's policy on what is considered inappropriate for a username, see Wikipedia:Username policy. See also Wikipedia:Sock puppet.
Edit summary vandalism Making offensive edit summaries in an attempt to leave a mark that cannot be easily expunged from the record (edit summaries cannot simply be "reverted" and remain visible when viewing a page's history). Often combined with malicious account creation.
Hidden vandalism Any form of vandalism that makes use of embedded text, which is not visible to the final rendering of the article but visible during editing.

What vandalism is not[adiht fruman]

อิ ๐ Although at times incorrectly referred to as such, the following things are not considered "vandalism" and are therefore treated differently:

Type Description
Tests by experimenting users New users who discover the "edit this page" button sometimes want to experience editing a page and may add something unhelpful to a page (e.g., a few random characters) as a test. Such edits are not done in bad faith and are therefore not vandalism. Rather than be warned for vandalism, these users should be warmly greeted, and given a reference to the sandbox (e.g., using the test template message) where they can continue to make test edits without being unintentionally disruptive. If a user has made a test edit and then reverted it, consider placing the message {{uw-selfrevert}} on their talk page. Registered users can create their own sandbox as well.
Using incorrect wiki markup and manual of style Inexperienced users often are unfamiliar with Wikipedia's formatting and grammatical standards (e.g. how to create internal and/or external links, when certain words should be bolded or italicized, etc.) Rather than label such users as vandals, just explain to them what our standard style is on the issue at hand—perhaps pointing them towards our documentation at Wikipedia:How to edit a page, and the like.
NPOV violations The neutral point of view is a difficult policy for many of us to understand, and even Wikipedia veterans occasionally accidentally introduce material which is non-ideal from an NPOV perspective. Indeed, we are all affected by our beliefs to a greater or lesser extent. Though inappropriate, this is not vandalism in itself.
Making bold edits Wikipedians often make sweeping changes to pages in order to improve them—most of us aim to be bold when updating articles. While having large chunks of text you've written removed or substantially rewritten can be frustrating, simply making edits that noticeably alter the text or content of a pages should not be immediately labeled vandalism.
Unintentional misinformation Sometimes a user will add content to an article that is factually inaccurate, but in the belief that it is accurate. By doing so in good faith, they are trying to contribute to the encyclopedia and improve it rather than vandalize. If you believe inaccurate information has been added to an article in good faith, ensure that it is, and/or discuss its factuality with the user who has submitted it.
Unintentional nonsense While intentionally adding nonsense to pages is a form of vandalism, sometimes honest editors may not have expressed themselves correctly (there may be an error in the syntax, particularly for Wikipedians who use English as a second language). Also, sometimes connection errors or edit conflict unintentionally produce the appearance of nonsense or malicious edits. In either case, assume good faith.
Stubbornness Some users cannot come to agreement with others who are willing to talk to them about an editing issue, and repeatedly make changes opposed by everyone else. This is regrettable—you may wish to see our dispute resolution pages to get help. Repeated deletion or addition of material may violate the three-revert rule, but this is not "vandalism" and should not be dealt with as such.
Harassment or personal attacks We have a clear policy on Wikipedia of no personal attacks, and harassing other contributors is not allowed. While some forms of harassment are also clear cases of vandalism, such as user page vandalism, or inserting a personal attack into an article, harassment in itself is not considered "vandalism" and should be handled differently.
Policy/guideline/essay/other project namespace page alteration Editors are encouraged to be bold. Making edits to Wikipedia policy pages (such as this one), guideline pages, etc. does require some knowledge of the consensus on that issue. If people misjudge consensus, this is not vandalism. Rather, it's an opportunity to discuss with those people, and get them to understand the consensus.

If a user treats situations which are not clear vandalism as such, then it is he or she who is actually harming the encyclopedia by alienating or driving away potential editors.

How to spot vandalism[adiht fruman]

The best way to detect vandalism is through recent changes patrolling, using the recent changes link to spot articles with edits that had come from IP addresses, or keeping an eye on your watchlist. The what links here pages for Insert text, Link title, Headline text, Bold text, Image:Example.jpg and Image:Example.ogg are also good places to find many test edits and/or vandalism. Any vandalism found should be reverted to an earlier version of the page; remember to include any good edits that have happened since then! The auto-summary feature can help users detect vandalism.

See also[adiht fruman]

Essays and guidelines

ang:Wikipedia:Bealu Bysen:Pp-semi