Page protection is the ability to limit who can edit a page. Administrators and Content Moderators have the ability to both protect and unprotect pages should the need arise.
- Pages with very high traffic (such as the Main Page).
- Maintaining the integrity of the Wordmark and favicon.
- Protecting the interface and system messages in the MediaWiki namespace. (These are protected automatically.)
- Talk pages of blocked users, if they abuse the ability to appeal their block.
- Templates that have great potential for vandalism through their inclusion on many pages.
- Editing disputes
- Persistent vandalism by registered users.
Indefinite semi-protection may be used for:
- All templates and images transcluded in the Main Page
- User pages when requested by the user
- Talk pages of AutoWikiBrowser bot accounts
Temporary semi-protection may be used for:
- Articles, talk pages, and images that are persistently vandalised by multiple users
There is no need to protect personal .css and .js pages such as "user/monobook.css" or "user/cologneblue.js". Only the accounts associated with these pages (and administrators) are able to edit them. (For more information on using these pages, see the help page on Wikia.)
There are three protection levels that can be chosen for each protection option. Protection levels for all protected pages can be found on Special:Protectedpages (edit, move, and upload) and Special:Protectedtitles (creation).
- Unprotected: Allows everybody to edit and rename the page.
- Semi-protection: Prevents an unregistered and non-autoconfirmed user from uploading new file versions, editing, renaming, and/or creating the page (if it does not exist). This protection level is usually sufficient for most purposes and can be set by choosing "Block new and unregistered users" in the options list.
- Full protection: Limits uploading new file versions, editing, renaming, and/or creating the page (if it does not exist) to administrators and Content Moderators. This protection level might be appropriate for a community policy page, wiki wordmark, or a favicon. It can be set by choosing "Administrators and Content Moderators only" in the options list.
Any administrator may unprotect any page after a reasonable period has lapsed, particularly a few days. Protection can also expire automatically if an expiry time is specified by the protecting administrator.
Cascading protection is a form of page protection which allows you to protect a page so that all templates and images on the page will also be protected without needing to protect them individually. This is useful on pages, such as a wiki main page, where most of the included images and templates are used only on that page.
To use cascading protection, just click the "protect" link as usual; cascade protect is there among normal protection options. The page must be fully protected in order to activate cascading protection.
- Protecting pages pre-emptively is generally discouraged. Only protect when there is persistent vandalism coming from many IPs/accounts, or if there is an on-going edit war that is showing no signs of cooling down. Blocks should be used instead of protection whenever possible.
- Do not edit protected pages that are subject to dispute except to add a notice explaining the page's protection.
- Do not protect a page you are involved in a dispute over. Administrative rights are not editor privileges – administrators should only act as servants to the user community at large.
- Avoid favouring one version of the article over another, unless one version is factually incorrect or vandalism.
- Temporarily protected pages should generally not be left as such for very long. Expiry times should usually be used in these cases.
- Talk and user talk pages are not to be protected except in extreme circumstances. An exception applies to user talk pages for banned users that are being persistently abused.
- Protection is not an endorsement of the protected version. Do not edit a page protected in a dispute to change it to another version.
- To maintain the open nature of the wiki format, protection should be used sparingly. Always consider other options, such as blocks and dispute resolution, before resorting to protection. Whenever possible, use an expiry time to keep the page protected for as little time as possible.