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PathfinderWiki:Deletion policy

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This page is an official policy on the PathfinderWiki.
It has wide acceptance among editors and is considered a standard that all users should follow.

In accordance with policy, this page has been protected. You can suggest changes by following the revision procedure or discussing it on the talk page.

When content on PathfinderWiki is obviously spam, or has been fully superseded by a new article and has no need to be redirected, or for some other reason should be removed from the wiki, a chronicler can mark it for deletion.

Be careful

PathfinderWiki is more than 10 years old. Its content was built over hundreds of thousands of contributions by more than 1,000 registered users. Every piece of content on the wiki was provided by volunteers—some who are active now and some who are not, some who are new and some who have contributed across its history.

Assume that all of those chroniclers care about the setting and wanted to contribute. While we advise boldness when updating the wiki, please use discretion and be respectful when removing content. Assume that the work you want to remove was carefully and intentionally added by your colleagues here, and consider how that removal might make them feel.

Aggressively deleting other editors' contributions, especially with little or no explanation or context, is a direct violation of the spirit of a wiki, if not its policyit destroys the atmosphere of trust and collaboration.

Reasons for removing content

Reasons for removing content include:

Proposing the deletion of an article

If you still think it is best for the article to be removed, then there are several steps you must take:

  1. Place the {{Deletion}} template at the top of the article, with your reasoning. For example: {{Deletion|it is a duplicate of...}}.
    • This places a large banner on the page notifying visitors that it is a candidate for deletion, and that their discussion on the talk page is appreciated.
    • This also places the article in Category:Articles marked for deletion.
  2. Save the article.
  3. Add a section with a heading to the article's Discussion page that provides context for the proposed deletion and explains why it should be accepted.
  4. Save the Discussion page.
  5. You are done! Ask for participation in the forums, on Discord, and elsewhere.

Accepting the proposal

In simple requests that have little impact to the wiki (sometimes referred to as "Housekeeping"), or to resolve a clear mistake, an administrator might agree with the proposal and quickly delete the article with little or no discussion.

In most cases, a proposal should have a consensus of other editors behind it on the Discussion page before requesting administrative action, and be patient. An article containing valid canon content should not be deleted without a substantial consensus and clear rationale, and expedited deletions of content that does not violate a policy are rarely justifiable.

Excessive or abusive proposals

Excessive unwarranted deletion proposals might be interpreted as vandalism. Avoid making frivolous deletion requests.

Avoid decreasing the quality of the article flagged for deletion or removing links pointing to it, except in pages that are clearly spam. If you must do so, do not use those actions as arguments to justify the deletion.

Deleting content from an article

If, in your considered judgment, a page needs to be rewritten or substantially condensed, go ahead and do that. However:

Even if you delete something that's clearly false to you, odds are that it was added to PathfinderWiki because another chronicler believed it was true, or it was true at that point in the canon timeline, or an apparent inconsistency reflects a potential canon conflict. Not every chronicler has, or can be assumed to be capable of acquiring, every book, Paizo staff forum post, blog post, podcast, livestream, audio drama, card game product, polite and assume the content was added in good faith.

Alternatives to removing content

  • Rephrasing
  • Providing an accurate intro or summary while keeping the content
  • Moving text within an article, perhaps to a section clarifying its controversial nature
  • Moving text to another article (existing or new)
  • Adding more of what you think is important to make an article more balanced
  • Adding sources or {{Source}} templates to unsourced content

Deleting real-world content

In real-world articles, as opposed to canon content, Administrators have the discretion to quickly remove unverifiable content. They might also request that such content either be discussed before being added to an article, or documented in a more appropriate venue, such as Wikipedia.

Handling canon conflicts

Do not delete conflicting content. Move or note the conflict on a Conflict page instead, and use the {{Conflict}} template to document and link to canon conflicts, and preserve the rationale for removing non-conflicting content on the Discussion page to help other chroniclers understand what was removed and why.

Deleting citations

Avoid deleting valid citations of canon works, even if newer works supersede some of the content of those older works. The Pathfinder campaign setting is a dynamic work of fiction and can change rapidly with each product release. If a canon conflict necessitates removing a citation from an article, move it to a Conflict page. Otherwise, move it to the Discussion page with context for its removal.

Deleting vandalism

Note that you of course do not need to write brilliant prose to remove vandalism. Just remove it, and write "removed vandalism" in the edit summary.

Explaining deletions

Avoid starting or responding to discussions in edit summaries—take it to the article's Discussion page or chronicler's User talk page. Edit summaries are valuable to the history of an article, but are not a substitute for providing persistent context and opening discussion by noting the reasons for deleting content on an article's Discussion page.

Deleting files or other content

Files follow the same process as articles for deletion, and must be deleted by an Administrator. Files that violate copyright policy might be quickly deleted with little or no discussion.

Templates and other content, such as Did You Know and Featured excerpts, follow the same processes as removing content from within an article.

Redirect duplicate content

If an article has had useful content but has been moved somewhere else (for instance, after a merge, name correction, or canon change), it is almost always best to convert the page to a redirect instead of deleting it. Outside sources (including search engines) keep old links into PathfinderWiki, and it is in our best interest to keep them working!

Avoid excessive deletion requests

Excessive deletion proposals might be interpreted as vandalism. Avoid making frivolous or repetitive deletion requests. If your proposed deletion was rejected, avoid proposing its deletion again unless you acquire additional relevant information.

Avoid edit wars

Avoid starting an edit war, consisting of repeated deletions and restorations, that requires administrative intervention. When in doubt, raise the issue on the article's Discussion page or the chronicler's User talk page before modifying content.

If your content is deleted...

It's OK for content on the wiki to be deleted. Wikis are collaborative tools, and content added to them has the fundamental expectation of being ephemeral. If your content was deleted, it doesn't necessarily mean the content was wrong or unwanted. It might be related to setting updates or canon clarifications, or to maintain consistency.

However, if you disagree with a deletion, don't understand the rationale, or need more context for the deletion, raise the issue on the article's Discussion page or the deleting chronicler's User talk page before restoring the content.

If your deletion was reverted...

It's OK for deletions on the wiki to be reverted. Reverting a deletion doesn't necessarily mean the entire change was unwarranted. The reversion might be related to the method or speed of deletion, or the need to coordinate changes to related content in order to maintain consistency across the wiki.

If you disagree with a reversion, don't understand the rationale, or need more context, raise the issue on the article's Discussion page or the reverting chronicler's User talk page before attempting to delete the content again.

This policy is adapted from Wowpedia's deletion and editing policies, which are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-SA 3.0) license, as is this modified version.