Wikipedia talk:Edit warring

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Clarifying that the initial edit does not count towards 3RREdit

The long-standing consensus is that the initial edit, if it only affects a long-standing version, does not count as a revert even if it removes content added by a previous edit. I am not convinced that this is appropriate, as the WP:STATUSQUO should be the preferred format, and the effect of this is to support those seeking to change from the status quo, but while it is the consensus it should be made clear in this guideline.

I was unable to think of wording that would make this clear, so I hope that one of the article watchers may be able to do so instead. BilledMammal (talk) 01:26, 5 April 2022 (UTC)

How about "edits to content that have not been altered within the last six months do not not count as a revert". --Kyohyi (talk) 13:48, 6 April 2022 (UTC)
@BilledMammal: Why shouldn't the initial edit count? It seems to me that the only way to ensure that the page's default version is the status quo ante bellum is by 'allowing' each of two users to edit up to three times, with Editor B every time undoing Editor A; after that point, if Editor A edits a fourth time, then he should be considered to have broken 3RR and edit-warred. The way it currently stands, Editor A's fourth edit is actually his third revert (the initial edit did not revert anything), which means he can still do it, but Editor B would be breaking the rule by reverting Editor A a fourth time. Thus, the page ends up outside the status quo. You may wish to see above the section "Who dunnit and when" to better understand what I mean. LongLivePortugal (talk) 14:09, 6 April 2022 (UTC)
The issue with this is that we don't want to give too much power to one side in a dispute. WP:QUO is important, but both QUO and 3RR / 1RR are failure states - what we really want is for people to talk disputes out and reach a consensus based on the sources and policy. So it's also important to avoid a situation where an editor feels no pressure to seriously compromise or engage beyond reverting. The balance of how 3RR and QUO works is good because it means that an editor who objects to a contested change can ultimately get things back to the status quo (at least until / unless there's a consensus otherwise), but they have to actually go to the talk page and engage in order to do it. If we gave absolute deference to the status quo in every possible facet of policy at every single turn, we would end up encouraging WP:STONEWALLING. --Aquillion (talk) 02:43, 7 April 2022 (UTC)
@Aquillion: You can't avoid giving 'too much power' to one side when you forbid one side from continuing to revert. The way the current rule is phrased, it gives power to the editor who wants to change the article into something other than the status quo (Editor A), because Editor B would break 3RR in reverting back to the status quo before Editor A does. It sounds very nice to say that you want editors to talk their disputes through, but there are editors who don't understand that and don't want to: I have encountered instances where a new editor makes a controversial edit and is reverted, being warned in the edit summary or in the user talk page to stop edit warring and discuss his intents in the article talk page, but does not comply. (Needless to say, I think it should be up to the user who wants to change something to explain why it should be changed [hence why he should take the initiative to write on the talk page], not to the user who wants to keep the status quo to explain why it should stay as it is; perhaps this is where we disagree...) LongLivePortugal (talk) 09:15, 13 April 2022 (UTC)
  • I came here to start this discussion myself. The core issue is that any edit that changes or removes any existing text in any way could in theory be considered a revert of someone; and that's plainly not the intent of the 3RR / 1RR. For the 3RR this is less pressing because by the time you're at 3RR it should be clear and quibbling over whether you're at 3 or 4 reverts is a bad look; but it's become a much more serious problem as 1RR restrictions have spread. I'm not sure on the precise fix, though. I don't think a precise length of time is quite right; if eg. someone comes back to an article to remove a sentence once a year (and is immediately reverted every time), those are plainly reverts. And, conversely, in a very high-traffic article I don't think someone should have to look over the last six months for every single removal. I think one good measure is "has this text been there long enough to be covered by WP:QUO without objections? If so, the edit removing or changing it is not a revert", ie. I would directly make it a feature that you can have QUO or 3RR on your side but not (normally) both, per my logic above that we want to encourage people to come to the table and talk about the actual content rather than cite "I win" failure-state policies at each other. EDIT: Another thought. Does replacing a just-added [citation needed] template with a reference count as a revert? I would presume no, since the "intent" of the template is to be replaced with a source, but I could see disputes arising if the person who added it argues that the source is insufficient (and plainly replacing it with a previously-disputed or removed source is a revert.) --Aquillion (talk) 02:43, 7 April 2022 (UTC)
    • @Aquillion: We could just state that: The first edit that alters the article away from the WP:STATUSQUO is not a revert. BilledMammal (talk) 16:29, 19 April 2022 (UTC)
  • Whether the so-called first edit counts as a revert depends on the circumstances, and I oppose any attempt to codify it.--Bbb23 (talk) 17:18, 19 April 2022 (UTC)
@Bbb23: Could you please explain how, in your opinion, it might depend on the circumstances? Perhaps that will help us reach a solution... LongLivePortugal (talk) 19:06, 27 April 2022 (UTC)
  • My view on this is that if you attempt to make the same edit four times to an article (beyond permitted exemptions), that should be treated equally from an adjudicating perspective, regardless of whether it is BRRR or RRRR. If you want to prevent stonewalling then the presiding admin could operate some commonsense; some do, but many don't. For example, if BRRR doesn't engage on the talk page while RRRR does engage, I can't think of a good reason why BRRR shouldn't cop for the block. We are a collaborative project at the end of the day, and perhaps we should judge these issues by attempts to resolve a dispute rather than an arbitrary number of reverts. Betty Logan (talk) 03:17, 28 April 2022 (UTC)

Revert of March 8Edit

This revert does not provide a substantive reason for rejecting the change. Does anyone have one? (@Bbb23:) Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 19:41, 11 April 2022 (UTC)

  • Advising users to tag the text prior to discussing on talk is not, and as far as I know never has been, part of the guidance here. It's not necessary to tag text in order to discuss it - I can't personally remember ever tagging text prior to discussing it on the talk page. Indeed, the addition of a tag to some of the text seems like an invitation to engage in additional edit warring, over whether or not the tag should remain until the discussion is concluded. Girth Summit (blether) 16:11, 19 April 2022 (UTC)
Thank you for providing a meaningful rationale for omitting the text. - Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 17:16, 19 April 2022 (UTC)
  • Two things. First, I agree with GS's opposition to the change; they've expressed it much better than I could have. Second, when you make a substantive change to policy and it's reverted, you must get a consensus. Silence (lack of objection here) is not good enough.--Bbb23 (talk) 16:20, 19 April 2022 (UTC)
Bbb23: Regarding your second point, my understanding is that silence is good enough when (1) the original revert is substance-free and (2) the reverting editor fails to discuss the substance-free edit on the talk page. In support of my position I offer (a) my post to your talk page (to which you did not respond), (b) the first two sections at Wikipedia:Status quo stonewalling#Status quo stonewalling tactics, and (c) wp:DRNE (including the seven See also links, three of which are policies).
Do you have any support for your position? - Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 17:16, 19 April 2022 (UTC)
I'm not surprised at your response, which is mostly why I don't bother discussing things with you. Both of your links above are essays.--Bbb23 (talk) 17:21, 19 April 2022 (UTC)
In other words, you can point to no essay, guideline, or policy that supports your position. With regard to my support, the wp:DRNE essay lists three policies in its See also section. - Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 17:49, 19 April 2022 (UTC)
  • I don't think it's a good idea. Dispute tags shouldn't be used blindly - they are for where there is an open dispute that requires attention; not every dispute needs to be tagged in the articles. Additionally, if there is a clear and unambiguous consensus for some particular wording, it is completely inappropriate to leave a dispute tag in the article implying that that wording is under dispute, even if one editor still disagrees with it (per WP:SATISFY.) So it's not correct to say that people should just automatically slap a dispute tag on the article every time they get reverted. I think it might be ok to mention dispute tags somewhere in this section, but definitely not with this "you must add a dispute tag" wording - they should be mentioned in passing as one available option for approaching disputes, not as a mandatory core part of the dispute-resolution process. --Aquillion (talk) 20:33, 19 April 2022 (UTC)

New exemption criterionEdit

I think we should explicitly list the following as an exemption criterion

Restoring an XFD tag for a page under discussion, or a speedy deletion tag removed by the page's author (talk) 05:23, 19 April 2022 (UTC)