Wiktionary:Votes/2024-05/Make No personal attacks an official policy

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Make No personal attacks an official policy

Voting on: Should Wiktionary:No personal attacks be labeled a policy? It's currently labeled a draft.




  1. Support An essential policy that ought to have been in place long ago. WordyAndNerdy (talk) 21:20, 1 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  2. Support Obviously Purplebackpack89 12:55, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  3. Support A lot of doublethink below that the existing draft when made official will be both toothless and draconian. In reality this change will be largely symbolic. It will send a message that personal attacks are unwelcome. Hard to be against that. —Caoimhin ceallach (talk) 11:33, 3 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    @Caoimhin ceallach In all fairness, it's not doublethink if different people oppose for different reasons. Theknightwho (talk) 13:10, 3 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    Perhaps "doublethink" means, in this context, saying there's a problem but voting oppose anyway? IMO, if you think there's a problem, it's imperative to vote support Purplebackpack89 13:42, 3 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  4. Support I see no harm in making it clear that personal attacks do not conduce to a collaborative environment. — Sgconlaw (talk) 16:42, 5 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  5. Support. I would be happy to see such a vote pass and would gladly commit to it if so as I believe it would be greatly beneficial to this project. It is unfortunate that it is unlikely to pass on this occasion since this vote is a transparent attempt by the proposer to silence the recent scrutiny of their edits. Likewise it is unfortunate that the first person to vote in favour of it engaged in a personal attack on this very page. (NB: ‘Using someone's political affiliations as an ad hominem means of dismissing or discrediting their views, such as accusing them of being left-wing or right-wing, is also forbidden.’) It is important to realize that the principle of ‘comment on content, not on the contributor’ would apply to everyone equally and that statements like ‘I feel harassed’ would be no grounds for silencing scrutiny of the content of any given edit. Not according to the policy being voted on, at any rate. Nicodene (talk) 22:42, 5 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  6. Support The votes against are genuinely confounding to me. I cannot understand how having a rule that states that personal attacks are bad is bad. —Justin (koavf)TCM 23:07, 9 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    Just because a rule says something does not mean that the rule is good. If I were to write a rule that said that you shouldn't vandalize, and also that you should give me 50 bucks if anyone edits a page I made, that rule would likely get struck down for that clause, and not because everyone's a secret vandal. CitationsFreak (talk) 09:28, 21 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  7. Support It is clear that the complaints about "wokery" and "curtailing free speech" are nothing but virtue-signaling nonsense. Being rude or mean is totally antithetical to a collaborative project, and it is mind-boggling that people disagree with this. People should not have the right to bully, harass, threaten, etc. on any online platform, and that should be the same here. PersusjCP (talk) 04:39, 25 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    It's disappointing that the first two oppose votes mention "wokery" and "curtail[ing] free speech", when the (vast) majority of opposition is down to the fact that this proposal is extremely poor and has had essentially zero input by the current community. Theknightwho (talk) 05:31, 25 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  8. Support I read most of the reasons provided with votes for and against. As I'm relatively new to English Wiktionary, I'm not sure who would be in charge of the policy's execution; however I hope it won't have to go to the extreme and that the executor(s) won't try to look for the problem where they shouldn't. I also don't see how it's even remotely related to wokery – isn't respecting other netizens just common sense? Specially that I've seen frequent editors referring to another's intellects and beliefs in a not-so-favorable way, which is, in my opinion, uncalled for, not to mention completely unnecessary. Lastly, regardless of the result of the poll, I encourage everyone to assume the so-called Good faith when it comes to edits that are not blatant vandalism. JimiYru 05:10, 25 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    It's precisely because of the fact that it's common sense that some of us oppose having a policy for it. You don't need a policy if something is common sense--you can just use common sense. Whereas having a policy encourages legalism and opens up the possibility of over-application or searching for loopholes. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 21:35, 27 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]


  1. Oppose I wrote extensive reasoning at the Beer Parlour. I can also afford one of various abridged reasons that alternatively suffice a nay. One is that the vote proposer knows not what a personal attack is. Right after the creation of this vote he escalated towards accusations of harassment and bullying. Maybe he should get treatment for paranoia. Is this a personal attack? I don’t know; this is why I don’t participate in making such bills. The wokery creates a toxic environment for less socially adept people and in consequence of this campaign our two Top 2 editors announced their retire, as Mglovesfun (talkcontribs) did ten years before, due to the same user. Thank you for your concern – Mag. iur. Fay Freak (talk) 12:33, 1 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    WF didn't leave and Equinox didn't say why they were leaving. You're making assumptions. And if they did indeed leave because someone complained that they were being nasty to them then who is being thin-skinned here? —Caoimhin ceallach (talk) 00:31, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    Humans are regularly insincere about the reasons for what they do, or specifically what they dedicate their life-years to, they are just conglomerates of cognitive biases, making assumptions about themselves, or what determines their personal lives, based on their identities, which even deprives them of maladaption insight; I don’t say “illness insight” inasmuch as even without clinical psychosocial impairment the mind turns the trick of defying reality, because there actually isn’t reason behind this life and we still have to move on somehow. If good things happened it was one’s dexterity in navigating godly laws and if bad things happen it was demonic characters, self-serving bias and fundamental attribution error. Like we know it since Hume under various formulations and degrees of detail.
    You also make the assumption that WF merely trolled, though announcing it repeatedly so the jape is barely operational, and didn’t actually prefer to leave rather than being unable of it due to behavioural addiction; the subtypes of internet use disorder are understudied, at least for social network use disorder and problematic social networking site use, which is similar to the occupation of online-lexicon editing, under the radar in population studies due to its rarety, there are prevalences higher than even any personality disorder. At least, when affording awareness, we can make a kind of Faustian bargain, to combat the Pavlovian reaction of writing out, up to the point of dysfunctionality, hating oneself and others, a new social categorization upon one’s encountering some exciting term.
    Taking advantage of the organizational responsibility diffusion and pseudonymity, we create systems of avoiding to take things personally, rather than forbidding to get personal, which owing to the subjective nature of human understanding is a maxim that cannot be consistently complied. Fay Freak (talk) 05:37, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    The above user's pronouncements concerning "wokery" ought to be viewed in light of their history of inserting Daily Stormer quotes into entries. WordyAndNerdy (talk) 03:12, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    Ever reflected about political socialization? Since roaming the unregulated internet at youth, I am titillated by political vocabulary, while at the same time I’ve done more against the radicalization from this content than you, who added fuel to the flame by building reactance. This is because, and I make an assumption again, you feel much more strongly about terms and contexts separating groups of people than even Nazis do, who ween conspiracies against their race all the time. Someone evidenced it by banning herself to avoid adding the latest idpol vocabulary tracked on userspace lists, but this was you only according to my memory, which I can’t confirm by currently extant userspace pages and block logs, and I don’t want to reinvoke traumatic memory in you here. Generally though, schoolteachers give, and have to give, their pupils politically biased content to read, of various veneer and degrees of delusion, why? Because the world looks like that, they have only a limited power to create alternative realities; there is such a thing as political education or political literacy, required for readers of texts so general as a newspaper or dictionary. Unfortunately you don’t need to make a great detour to encounter a MAGA, not to speak of their difference to Nazis new and historical. If due to some personal experiences you have flashbacks from identifying them, the recipe is exposure therapy. Fay Freak (talk) 05:37, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    @Fay Freak First off, Caoimhin ceallach is correct, blaming me for editors retiring is inaccurate. Also, if editors leave when they're not allowed to harass other editors...that's a GOOD thing.
    Furthermore, why have you gone on this long screed making assumptions about WordyAndNerdy? In opposition to a policy about personal attacks, you've made them. Purplebackpack89 13:04, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    You sure do think that a person with ~900k edits and another with ~200k edits leaving the project is beneficial. What are your plans to compensate for this loss? Inqilābī 20:44, 3 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  2. Nay, for fear of the potential misuse of the proposed draconian law which can lead to a curtailment of free speech. There is no clear definition as to what constitutes a personal attack; in the aforetime I myself got bemired in controversy thanks to my innovative usages of English which little polpotesque wights misconstrued as a scathful attack. Inqilābī 17:30, 1 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  3. Oppose per Fay Freak. It seems like the purpose of this vote is to escalate the current Beer Parlour drama rather than to actually get people to treat each other more nicely. Ioaxxere (talk) 18:23, 1 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  4. Oppose per all the above. Some people just take everything personally. We shouldn't live in constant fear of criticizing bad editors, just because they might construe our criticism as personal. I don't agree with calling people idiots (for example), but I also don't think it should be a bannable offense, especially if it's directed at someone who is in fact being an idiot. Andrew Sheedy (talk) 22:30, 1 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  5. Oppose, seconding all the above. This policy is too susceptible to abuse and would quickly be weaponized. Some users would exploit the policy by labeling even mild criticism as “personal attacks,” creating a chilling effect where individuals are afraid to express their views. The varying thresholds for what different users consider “offensive” only makes the matter worse, because it would inevitably lead to inconsistent and prejudiced enforcement. It could be used to silence dissenting voices or unfairly target editors under the pretense of preventing personal attacks. Imetsia (talk (more)) 23:05, 1 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  6. Oppose Ancient and neglected fork of w:Wikipedia:No personal attacks that has not been evaluated or formed by the community, + distrust of the nominator (c.f. Chuck Entz's statement, as well as Ioaxxere's evaluation above). —Fish bowl (talk) 04:13, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    Distrust of the nominator isn't a good reason for voting oppose... Purplebackpack89 12:57, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  7. Oppose per Fish bowl. So little effort has gone into this proposal that the nominator couldn't even be bothered to display the proposed policy on this page, unlike every other policy vote I've ever seen. Theknightwho (talk) 04:46, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    To clarify my view: I do think we need a policy on this, but it needs to have had some actual thought put into it by current members of the community first. Theknightwho (talk) 10:31, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  8. Oppose The initiator of this vote seems to be suffering from a massive persecution complex. If this becomes a policy, it'll obviously be abused by people like the OP, interpreting as personal attacks comments in which no personal attack whatsoever is to be found. -- 𝘗𝘶𝘭𝘪𝘮𝘢𝘪𝘺𝘪(𝘵𝘢𝘭𝘬) 08:29, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  9. Oppose per all of the above. PUC08:42, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  10. Oppose. Nothing I could say hasn't been said above. Vininn126 (talk) 10:22, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  11. Oppose – The proposer had a specific agenda in mind when proposing this, plus the actual policy they hastily nominated to make official had not been edited since 2012 (!), hence I have to oppose. For the record, I would definitely support an actual well-written proposal for a policy against using personal attacks; I have seen a lot of inexperienced editors get scared off due to the language/tone used by more experienced editors during interactions which is detrimental to the project. IMO we must try to be patient (not overtly!) with newcomers because they could grow up to be dedicated editors, which would thus be a net positive for the project. At least compared to my experience on Wikipedia, Wiktionary is low-key the Wild West sometimes. LunaEatsTuna (talk) 10:37, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    I would strongly urge you to reconsider your vote, @LunaEatsTuna. If you want the policy, then take your opinions about me out of it and support it. Purplebackpack89 13:10, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    They clearly outlined their issues with the current page being outdated. Vininn126 (talk) 13:13, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    Then, by that logic, you should also retract your vote because you DIDN'T clearly outline your reasons... Purplebackpack89 13:18, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    Lol, agreeing with those above is clear. Don't twist things. Vininn126 (talk) 13:42, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  12. OpposeFenakhay (حيطي · مساهماتي) 12:49, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  13. Oppose --Vahag (talk) 14:32, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  14. Oppose Thadh (talk) 18:53, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  15. Oppose The page is not good enough to be policy. The principle, "no personal attacks", has a lot to recommend it, provided enforcement is not too quick on the draw after rare violations and provided accusation of personal attacks is not taken to be sufficient evidence of a personal attack (though it should be taken seriously). I dread a legalistic system. DCDuring (talk) 19:15, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  16. Oppose Allahverdi Verdizade (talk) 21:41, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  17. Oppose What others above me have said. Megathonic (talk) 01:15, 3 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  18. Oppose Case in point: Fumiko Take has a long history of making personal attacks. She was blocked several times for such problematic behaviour (proving policy is unnecessary) and now jumps around IPs to make blocking her impossible (proving policy is toothless). MuDavid 栘𩿠 (talk) 02:06, 3 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  19. Oppose. نعم البدل (talk) 17:09, 5 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  20. Oppose Opposing current policy proposal due to the bad faith and chaos around it, would be amenable to a less blatant and more concrete implementation. Akaibu (talk) 07:51, 6 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  21. Oppose. Bad faith proposal by a bad faith user. Though the way the initiator of the vote paints themselves as a villain in such an obvious manner makes one wonder whether this whole debacle is a case of mental illness instead. Surely no one can be this lacking in the self-awareness department? In any case, wielding a vote as a weapon has never won anyone any friends here as far as I'm aware. And friends are what you should be looking for, not political allies or enemies. I hope the initiator is able to gaze inwards, realize what they've done, and get help for whatever it is they're suffering from. --Veikk0.ma (talk) 02:58, 7 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  22. Oppose, --Robbie SWE (talk) 18:28, 10 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  23. Oppose. What's next? Mandatory drab uniforms for all and a special hand salute? — Orexan (talk) 11:42, 13 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  24. Oppose. The current revision of Wiktionary:No personal attacks is not written with enough care to have this status. Some specific concerns are at Wiktionary talk:No personal attacks#Concerns in 2024. I would gladly support adopting w:Wikipedia:No personal attacks as Wiktionary policy. Daask (talk) 18:17, 17 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    Oppose --Wheatley2 (talk) 23:04, 28 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    Not eligible to voteSURJECTION / T / C / L / 06:47, 29 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]


  1. Abstain As several oppose voters have suggested, I suspect (hope) that once the community has time to discuss what kind of policy against personal attacks we should have, what would be reasonable for the policy/guideline to say and how we could mitigate/handle gaming of it (where trolls bait someone into saying something that can be construed as an attack and seek to get them banned, a tried and true tactic on Wikipedia), we can come up with something which will at least be a Guideline, if not suitable for making an 𝕺fficial 𝕻olicy. Since that time wasn't allotted before starting this vote, one editor just rushed a woefully long-unupdated text straight to a vote in what plainly looked like an effort to score points in a dispute with another editor (and only thanks to the quick action of a third editor were some of the most egregiously out-of-date parts of the text noticed and removed before voting started), it quite understandably looks like this particular ill-thought-out vote on this particular outdated version of the text will fail. Since the optics of a vote which is nominally about saying 'personal attacks are bad' failing are ¿grimly amusing?, I want to go ahead and note that if anyone responds to the vote failing by going out and making personal attacks in response (and in general, if anyone is making numerous or egregious personal attacks), they're still liable to be reprimanded or blocked; basic standards exist, lol (I've seen other admins block users for egregiously bad personal attacks, without giving any indication they knew we had a long-unupdated page about the topic, but just based on general standards, as I also have done without realizing we had a page about it). - -sche (discuss) 15:25, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    @-sche: Is this an official abstain vote? Asking for numerical/template purposes. AG202 (talk) 02:12, 4 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
    Sure, I guess I'll put the template on it. Although it's interesting to ponder the difference between casting an abstain vote and abstaining from voting by just making a comment, ha. - -sche (discuss) 02:21, 4 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  2. Abstain: There should've been more thought and effort put into this, allowing more input from the community. We do need a policy for alleviating conflicts, but not like this. AG202 (talk) 20:40, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  3. Abstain per -sche and AG202. I agree that Wiktionary needs some sort of harassment policy, but this isn't it. Binarystep (talk) 05:14, 3 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  4. Abstain per everyone. lattermint (talk) 01:02, 4 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  5. Abstain per all the above. — Vorziblix (talk · contribs) 01:57, 4 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  6. Abstain it looks like something like that needs to happen, and I'd support such a policy when done properly. Jberkel 15:17, 4 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  7. Abstain A policy would be good, but as it is it's so vague and needs to be more comprehensive. Kungming2 (talk) 21:25, 19 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  8. Abstain Needs more time in BP. CitationsFreak (talk) 09:28, 21 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  9. Abstain There isn't much wrong with a policy against personal attacks (although I think Denazz' comment about the Wikimedia Universal Code of Conduct is correct), but this vote is ill-conceived (for a number of reasons that are clear from the many abstain and oppose votes above - although "wokery" indeed isn't one of them, tiresome as the phenomenon may be). — Mnemosientje (t · c) 14:57, 26 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]


Should we copy what the current proposal says here? I feel like it would be helpful to show the policy to voters, to help them make up their minds. CitationsFreak (talk) 23:15, 25 May 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Could just mirror it using a template. There's already a link Purplebackpack89 00:02, 26 May 2024 (UTC)[reply]
  • As Vininn126 pointed out, that is indeed what I did: "For the record, I would definitely support an actual well-written proposal" – the current policy had not been edited since 2012 until the illustrious This, that and the other made an edit mid-discussion in an attempt to improve it. If we are to adopt a policy, it must be a good one that would cover the most important aspects/definitions for 'harassment' so that it cannot be abused (via loopholes or ambiguities) by any editor.. I based my decision solely on my reading of that page, for which I get the impression that it is definitely not good and IMO leaves a lot to be desired. i.e. you essentially proposed an outdated suggestion for a policy written 12-years ago. As I said twice before, we do indeed need such a policy but it must be well-written; and this is a sentiment that seems to be shared by a lot of other voters here, regardless of their opinion on you as an editor. LunaEatsTuna (talk) 16:49, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Then please read my statement again. —Fish bowl (talk) 22:29, 2 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]

It should be first thoroughly rewritten after w:Wikipedia:No personal attacks. The en.wiki one has more clear and practical definitions of personal attacks. In fact copy and paste is good enough. -- Huhu9001 (talk) 02:18, 5 June 2024 (UTC)[reply]


Failed 8-24-9 Vininn126 (talk) 08:03, 1 July 2024 (UTC)[reply]

"In short, all those whom the gentry had despised, those whom they had trodden into the dirt, people with no place in society, people with no right to speak, have now audaciously lifted up their heads. They have not only lifted up their heads but taken power into their hands." --Geographyinitiative (talk) 05:25, 7 July 2024 (UTC)[reply]