How Wikipedia Works/Appendix D

Appendix D. Glossary

Wikipedia's glossary, which contains many terms not found here, can be found at

A Wikipedia administrator; administrators are users with extra technical privileges to delete and restore articles and block accounts and IP numbers
Articles for Deletion; an open forum for discussing article deletion on a case-by-case basis
Assume Good Faith; a guideline requesting civility and mutual trust among editors
The Administrators' noticeboard for incidents, where Wikipedia administrators discuss and can be alerted to current problems with vandalism, edit wars, or other issues that require administrator attention
An anonymous or IP user who is not logged in when editing
The Arbitration committee; a body that resolves on-site disputes
The top-level, formal, and lengthy dispute resolution procedure performed by the ArbCom
The wikilinks that link to a page, displayed by clicking What Links Here on the left-hand sidebar
Short for the slogan, "Be bold in updating articles," which means if you see an article that needs work, don't hesitate to improve it
An automated editing program operating on the site
An administrator with power to promote other editors to administrator status
Conflict of interest, which occurs when the editor of an article is somehow personally invested in the topic
See Wikimedia Commons
The list of contributions, or edits, made by an editor
Short for copyright violation, such as an article or image that contains copyrighted material from another source
Criteria for speedy deletion; the policy detailing when articles may be deleted without going through a review process. See also speedy
disambiguation page
A page that links to alternate articles with similar titles. For example, the Boston disambiguation page lists at least 20 places named Boston, as well as the rock band and WWII-era aircraft
dead-end page
A Wikipedia page with no outbound wikilinks. See also orphan article
The display showing the differences between two versions of a wiki page
Deletion review; the appeals system for deleted articles
Any saved change made to a wiki page
edit conflict
A conflict that occurs when two editors try to save versions of a page at the same time
edit count
The total number of edits made by a user's account
edit war
An extended dispute between two or more editors over article content; during an edit war, changes to an article are reverted multiple times and no consensus emerges about the article's content
external link
A hyperlink leading to a site outside Wikipedia
featured article
An esteemed category of peer-reviewed Wikipedia articles; each day a different featured article is spotlighted on the main page
Featured Content
A category of Wikipedia content including featured articles, images, lists, and portals
(verb) To split a wiki into two editing communities, with the intent to develop the existing content in different ways; (noun) the end product of such a split
The GNU Free Documentation License under which Wikipedia content is released
Ignore All Rules; a traditional slogan suggesting Wikipedians should rise above formalities in unusual situations
internal link
A hyperlink on a wiki leading to another location on the same wiki; an internal link is implemented in wikitext using special syntax rather than a URL
To link different wikis by extending internal link syntax; on Wikipedia, to link corresponding articles in different language versions of Wikipedia
lead section
The introductory section of an article, which appears before the first heading
main namespace
The main or article namespace is the namespace that articles appear in; this namespace does not have a prefix
Manual of Style
The collection of Wikipedia writing guidelines (WP:MOS)
An account operated by someone who is acting for the benefit of another partisan editor. See also sockpuppet
A dispute resolution procedure, where a member of the mediation committee attempts to resolve a dispute between two or more editors through formal negotiation to reach consensus (WP:M)
The open-source, free software used to run the Wikipedia sites and many others
Meta, Meta-Wiki
The site at, for coordinating Wikimedia Foundation projects
mirror site
A website posting content from Wikipedia (legitimately, if GFDL conditions are fulfilled)
The default skin or template on Wikipedia; this is how pages appear to anyone who has not logged in and changed his or her user preferences. See also skin
A virtual container for different types of content on the wiki; namespaces are defined by different prefixes, such as talk: or Wikipedia:, which appear before page names; articles are in the main namespace
The criteria that article topics should be notable to an outside observer, as determined through outside sources
Neutral Point of View; the Wikipedia policy that article content should be presented in an objective, neutral, and substantiated manner
orphan article
An article that has no incoming wikilinks from other articles
A shortcut for Wikipedia's policy on no ownership of articles (WP:OWN); in conversation, the term OWN may serve as a warning not to take control of an article's content
page history
The list of edits that have been made to a wiki page, displaying in reverse chronological order and viewable from the History tab
A link to a specific version of a Wikipedia page
A project page that collects articles, images, and facts about a particular topic
Proposed deletion; the deletion process for article deletions expected to be uncontroversial

redirect:(noun) A page serving solely to send a reader to an article with another title; (verb) to redirect from one page to another

To return an article to a previous version; often abbreviated as rvv or rv in edit summaries
Request for Comment; a part of the dispute resolution procedure in which editors can discuss issues such as the conduct of other users
The sandbox is a page set aside for test edits Wikipedia:Sandbox
sister project
A Wikipedia sister project (for example, Wiktionary) is a multilingual collection of wikis set up by the Wikimedia Foundation to pursue a generally reference-related goal
The appearance of Wikipedia pages; logged-in users can select how Wikipedia pages appear in their user preferences
A second account operated covertly by an editor with an existing account. See also meatpuppet
A speedy page deletion by an administrator, in line with the criteria for the speedy deletion policy and criteria for speedy deletion
An administrator who can change any user's status on any Wikimedia project
A page constructed with a forward slash (/), as in User:Abelard/Letter to Heloise; subpages are not allowed in the main article namespace
Short for system operator; a synonym for administrator
Three-Revert Rule (3RR)
The prohibition on reverting an article more than three times in 24 hours, except for reverting vandalism
To include content stored on one page within another page, for example, by adding a template to a page
To move an article to another wiki (usually deleting the original article)
user page
A registered user's personal page, usually containing information about the editor and his or her interests
To move an article into the User namespace as a subpage
A personal list of articles that can be maintained by any logged-in user that lists all recent edits to the articles on the list
An online database of freely editable web pages, forming an evolving hypertext; Wikipedia is just one example of a wiki
wiki engine
The software underlying a wiki. See also MediaWiki
wiki markup language
The special simplified syntax for wiki page editing and formatting; also called wiki syntax
To add appropriate internal links to existing text and to impose standard format and other house style
A pedantic, over-literal interpreter of Wikipedia policy and custom
A synonym for an internal link. See also internal link
Commons A project of the Wikimedia Foundation to collect free media (images and video); Wikipedia articles can contain links to files on Commons
Foundation (WMF) The nonprofit organization that has overall responsibility for running the Wikipedia sites and sister projects
The text of a wiki page visible when editing (as opposed to what readers see)