Last modified: 2011-03-13 18:06:28 UTC
We should have a prompt which comes up if a user attempts to blank an article, similar to the
prompt for blank edit summaries. It could link to the applicable guideline on page blanking,
vandalism, inform the user that blanking does not delete a page, and tell them what the proper
venues for discussion would be.
BACKGROUND, REASONING, & DETAILS:
En Wikipedia has recently been attempting to crack down on vandalism and unsourced negative
information in biography articles about living people, especially information which may
constitute libel. A problem which has emerged an occasional but significant number of times is
new users who, upon discovering negative information in a biography article, blank that article,
presumably in an attempt to delete the page.
This causes problems because article blanking is considered unacceptable according to Wikipedia's
policies, and is further a very common form of vandalism. However, reverting these edits can open
the reverting editor to legal action in the case that he accidently reintroduced libel into the
Because of this concern, I propose that a warning message be given to anyone who attempts to
submit a page-blanking edit, similar to that which is optionally triggered when entering a blank
edit summary. This message could state that page blanking does not erase the page in question and
is a form of vandalism, and suggesting instead that if they believe the page should not exist,
they should use the Wikipedia:Deletion process, discuss with other editors on the talk page, or
visit the Biographies of living people noticeboard.
This message would inform any good-faith blankers of proper methods for dealing with content
issues on a page, and save innocent vandal-hunters from acidentally committing libel. It would
also make page-blank vandalism less convenient for vandals as a whole.
[[Wikipedia:WikiProject User scripts/Requests]] to request someone write one for you. If there is consensus, it can then be implemented in
[[MediaWiki:Common.js]] on the English Wikipedia.