Some people will appear just long enough to stir up trouble and disappear afterwards. This is referred to as "disruptive editing". Many times, it will not be necessary to take action against them.
When it does becomes necessary to block a user, use the following rules when setting the duration. Administrators should not issue a block in retaliation or as punishment, just as a means of discouraging further repetition of the poor edits. However, administrators should be aware that by the third time a person causes a problem, they are usually behaving in a deliberate manner and will need to have a much longer block set on their account or IP address.
In all situations, administrators should conduct themselves in an impartial manner, stating facts and policies, not opinions or personal feelings.
Ask that they stop
For situations where a person is being disruptive but without malicious intent behind the actions (such as a kid "playing around" or people adding fan fiction), asking them to stop may be enough to resolve the situation. Do not ask why they are making their edits. State what is not acceptable and link to the appropriate page(s).
If the user continues making poor edits, ask again that they stop. If the user still continues making poor edits, ask them a third and final time to stop and list what the consequences will be if they persist. Typically, this will be a short block.
Users that made honest mistakes or "newbie mistakes" will either stop the bad behavior or will acknowledge the admin's message. Users that do not reply to these messages are usually deliberately ignoring them.
Most of the time, a few instances on the same day should be treated as a single event. However, if this occurs more than 5 times in a single day, especially if the previous edits were removed and added back in, then they should be considered as deliberate actions on the user's part, and blocks set in place as directed for a second or third infraction.
Users that have been blocked before may continue their bad behavior after the block expires. For these repeat offenders, increase the block length according to the rules below.
Repeat offenders may also continue their actions under different IP addresses or accounts. It may be helpful to check with another administrator to see if they concur that the same person is editing under different accounts or addresses. In these situations, the block reason should be listed as "repeat offender using multiple accounts". Once it has been determined that a person is using three or more accounts or IP addresses, existing blocks may be updated to match the block on the new account or address.
The following infractions warrant an immediate block without going through the process of asking the user to stop, except as noted.
- Profanity: If the word has not been said on the show, it cannot be used on the wiki. Two week block for first offense, one month for second offense, three months for third offense. Fourth offense: consult with another admin to see if the new block should be double the previous block or if it should be longer, including a permanent block.
- Insults and harassment: warning on user's talk page for first offense, or go immediately a two week block if it is severe enough (a personal attack rather than insults). Second offense will be the next step up. (If the first offense resulted in a warning, set the block for two weeks.) Third offense: double the previous block. Fourth offense: consult with another admin to see if the new block should be double the previous block or if it should be longer.
- Racial slurs, hate speech or sexual statements: minimum of a one month block for first offense, three months for second offense, one year for third offense, permanent for fourth offense.
- Spam (advertisements, rants against third parties, political statements): one year block.
- Pornography: permanent block. Delete the pictures immediately and any links to those pictures.
- Inappropriate pictures (non-pornographic): warning on offender's talk page for first offense, or go immediately a two week block if it is severe enough. Second offense will be the next step up. (If the first offense resulted in a warning, set the block for two weeks.) Third offense: double the previous block.
- Note: if a picture depicts a racial slur, hate speech or a political statement, the above rules for those kinds of statements take priority. Delete the pictures immediately and any links to those pictures.
- Unacceptable user names: User accounts with profanity, racial slurs, hate speech, sexual statements or slang words for any of these in the name should be permanently blocked. For other unacceptable user names, leave message on their Talk page directing them to create a new account.
To set a permanent block, set the Expiry to "other" and fill in "infinite" for the Other time.
Notification on the user's Talk page
The message on the user's talk page notifying them of the block should be matter-of-fact, stating the duration of the block and what they are being blocked for. Keep personal statements or questions out of the message. Example:
- Profanity is not allowed on this wiki, as per the Simplified ruleset (or include link to this policy page). You are blocked for two weeks.
For registered users where a block of six months or longer has been enacted, select "Prevent user from sending e-mail". This will prevent them from causing further problems via e-mail.
Remove the automated greeting from any user's Talk page that has been permanently blocked.
Appealing a block
Administrators should not de-select "Allow this user to edit own talk page while blocked" when setting the block unless it is for a repeat offender that has made it clear that they will continue their actions when the block expires. Allowing the user to edit their own talk page will permit them to register an appeal if they feel the block was unjust or if they are blocked as "collateral damage" (an IP address on a public network that is shared between computers, which typically results when "Automatically block the last IP address used by this user, and any subsequent IPs they try to edit from" is selected for a registered user).
Users that have been blocked may register an appeal on their Talk page, listing why they should be unblocked. However, users should be aware that if they did not respond to any of the previous requests that they stop, they will need to present compelling reasons why the block should be lifted. "I didn't know" is not acceptable since the wiki displays a "you have new messages" pop-up on the page when the user visits the wiki again.
For more information, refer to Appealing a block on Wikipedia.
Lifting a block
The administrator that issued the block should review the appeal and make a determination whether there is sufficient reason to unblock the user. If in doubt, consult with an another administrator as to whether the reasons presented are valid and show a sincere desire to return to good editing.
Admins should not remove blocks that are placed by other administrators without first discussing the matter with them.
Administrators should be aware that blocked users may attempt to get around the block by creating a new account. This account may be created on a different wiki and will not show up on the User creation log. Brand new editors that show up, saying that they are a different person and requesting that the account be unblocked are almost always sock puppets of the blocked user.
If the block will not be removed, a statement to that fact should be placed on the user's Talk page.