Help:Deleting a page

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Page deletions are rare on a wiki. If deletion is nevertheless required, this article describes how to mark a page for deletion.

A page will get removed from the wiki by an administrator some time after a deletion request template is placed on a page. If there is any reason to not delete a page, please open a discussion on that page's talk page - this should defer any deletion until after the discussion is resolved.

When not to delete a page

Typically a page would be deleted only if the contents are entirely inappropriate and do not match the purposes of the wiki, such as vandalism or material with an inappropriate license.

In other situations, take a less extreme course of action, for example:

  • The page should have a different title -- See Help:Moving a page
  • The contents should have been placed on a different page -- Add the contents to the other page, and then supply a redirect. See Help:Redirects.
  • The contents are already on a different page -- Delete the duplicate content and leave a redirect. That way, the page title, which made sense to somebody, will helpfully redirect to the information. See Help:Redirects
  • The page is out-of-date -- Re-word sentences to be in the past tense, to make the page an historical record. Alternatively, label the information as out-of-date, with a warning notice.

An actual delete is generally necessary only if the title of the page is inappropriate. In most other situations, a merge and redirect is more appropriate.

For user pages it is usually more appropriate to simply "blank" the page (edit the page, delete all content, and save).

Look at the page history when considering asking for a page to be deleted, it may have once contained useful information and the history may provide insight into why the page exists. Also consider a page in relation to the rest of the wiki, the "What links here" feature (from the "Tools" menu) might show how a page could be useful for other parts of the wiki.
Deciding on appropriate content/page titles can be a difficult aspect of Wiki organization, and one which can often provoke debates. If a merge or deletion might cause discord, propose the change first: leave a note stating arguments for deletion on the talk page.

Only after careful consideration of all these parameters should a page delete request be made, as laid out in the next section.

How to have a page deleted

For editors

Normal wiki users (aka editors) cannot permanently delete a Wiki page. This is a deliberate design feature, and is an important part of why wikis work. Every kind of editing operation can be reverted by any other user, and that includes resurrecting deleted content (which will never take up significant server storage space).

An article may be blanked by editing the page, deleting the page contents, and saving. However to completely remove a page along with its history, a request must be made to the administrators.

Before requesting deletion of a page, see the previous section on why pages are usually restructured rather than deleted.

To request removal of a page from the wiki, nominate it for deletion by placing a {{Delete}} template at the top of the page, including justification for the proposed deletion.

To apply a delete request to a page, add the template along with the reason for the request, along the following lines:

{{Delete|This page should be deleted because it has never been used.}}

This will display a request for deletion at the top of the page that will look like this:

This page has been nominated for deletion

The given reason is: This page should be deleted because it has never been used.

If there is any reason not to delete this page, do not remove this notice, but please open a discussion on the associated talk page (this should delay deletion until the discussion is resolved).

  Note to admins
Please remember to check if anything links here and the page history before deleting.

This notice should remain for a minimum of 1 month after it was placed on the page. If discussion is still ongoing it should remain until a consensus is reached (check the talk page), at which time the page may be deleted or this notice may be removed.

If the page has only been edited by the user who nominated it for deletion and/or is in the nominator's user space, then more flexibility in the decision may be allowed.

Check the help page on deleting for more information.

There will usually be a period allowing for other editors to comment on the request. Once this period has passed, if no one objects to the page being removed, an administrator may delete the page if they agree with the deletion request.

If a more rapid deletion of a page might be desired for some reason, get in touch with a wiki administrator.

For admins

Administrators (users listed on the right at Project:Wiki) are able to delete a page "semi-permanently" (no longer visible on the wiki). Typically, administrators will follow the category that the {{Delete}} template adds pages to (Category:Deletion candidate), and actually delete a page if:

  • there are no ongoing discussions about the page deletion request (check the talk page)
  • enough time has passed to allow other users to start a discussion about the page deletion (at least one month)
  • the administrator agrees with the reason for requesting the deletion
  • the page has been properly checked to be of no use to the wiki (check page history, what links to the page, etc.)
Always use the "What links here" feature (from the "Tools" menu) to check where a page is used across the wiki before proceeding with deletion. Any pages that link to a page that will be deleted will need to be edited to fix the links that will be broken by the deletion.

A page may be deleted by an administrator from the "Delete" entry in the "more" menu.

See also