Wiktionary:No personal attacks

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1=Policies and Guidelines
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link={{{imglink}}} This is a Wiktionary policy, guideline or common practices page. This is a draft proposal. It is unofficial, and it is unknown whether it is widely accepted by Wiktionary editors.
Policies – Entries: CFI - EL - NORM - NPOV - QUOTE - REDIR - DELETE. Languages: LT - AXX. Others: BLOCK - BOTS - VOTES.

Do not make personal attacks anywhere in Wiktionary. Comment on content, not on the contributor. Personal attacks will never help you make a point; they hurt the Wiktionary community and deter users from helping create a good dictionary.


There is no excuse for personal attacks on other contributors. Do not make them.

Editors who make extreme or repeated personal attacks may be blocked or face other consequences, such as being forbidden from interacting with particular editors.


Specific examples of personal attacks include but are not limited to the following:

  • Accusatory comments such as "Bob is a troll", or "Jane is an incompetent editor" can be considered personal attacks if said repeatedly, in bad faith, or with sufficient venom.
    • If you wish to raise a good faith concern about a particular editor, this should be presented in a level-headed manner with reference to relevant evidence. Serious accusations require serious evidence.
  • Negative personal comments and "I'm better than you" attacks, such as "You have no life."
  • Racial, sexual, homophobic, religious or ethnic epithets directed against another contributor.
  • Using someone's affiliations as a means of dismissing or discrediting their views - regardless of whether said affiliations are mainstream or extreme.
  • Profanity directed against another contributor.
  • Threats of any kind of legal action.
  • Death threats or any threat of violence.
  • Threatened or actual doxxing of another contributor.
  • Threats or actions which expose other Wiktionary editors to political, religious or other persecution by government, their employer or any others. Violations of this sort may result in a block for an extended period of time which may be applied immediately by any administrator upon discovery.


Instead, try the following:

  • Discuss the facts and how to express them, not the attributes of the other party. This does not mean that you have to agree with the other person, but just agree to disagree.
  • Never suggest a view is invalid simply because of who its proponent is.
  • Explore issues in a less public forum like e-mail if a debate threatens to become personal. is this a serious suggestion in 2024?
  • Read Wiktionary:Dispute resolution.

Remedies and consequences

Many Wiktionarians remove personal attacks on third parties on sight, and although this is not policy it is often seen as an appropriate reaction to extreme personal abuse. Users have been banned from other sister projects for repeatedly engaging in personal attacks. Abusive edit summaries are also ill-regarded.

If you are personally attacked, you should ask the attacker to stop and note this policy. If they continue, consider following Wikipedia's process for resolving disputes.

In severe and repeated cases, an attacker may be blocked. A block may be applied even for isolated personal attacks where the attack was extreme (such as a death threat or an instance of doxxing that plausibly places another user at risk of real-world harm).

As with all blocks, blocking for personal attacks should only be done for prevention, not punishment. A block may be warranted if it seems likely that the user will continue using personal attacks.

Personal attacks are also contrary to the Wikimedia Foundation's Universal Code of Conduct and the Terms of Use. Editors who have egregiously and continually violated these policies have been globally banned from all Wikimedia sites, including Wiktionary.

Community spirit

Remember to accept that we are all part of the same community as we are all Wiktionarians. Disputes on talk pages are accessible to everyone on the Internet. The way in which you conduct yourself on Wiktionary reflects on Wiktionary and on you.

It is your responsibility to foster and maintain a positive online community in Wiktionary. Personal attacks against any user - regardless of the editor's past behavior - are contrary to this spirit.