Two different documents about how to edit are being combined here. Each starts with the XXXX title. At present the simple outline is first; it should keep users productive for their first few days.


The basicsEdit

The bare essential points of editing are:

  • Type in the edit box, much the same as in any wordprocessing program.
  • For a new paragraph, you need a complete blank line OR a line starting with either a colon (which produces an indent) or an asterisk (which produces a bullet). Doubling those characters gives extra indent.

Fractionally more adventurous thingsEdit

Other effects may be achieved very quickly if you can see a toolbar (row of little boxes) just above the edit box. But here are the slow ways of doing the most important:

  • Double square brackets around any word or phrase create an internal jump-link to a page with that name (whether or not one exists). Please use them for any word or phrase that you think should have an article.
  • Italic is achieved by putting two apostrophes at each end of the word or phrase;
    three each end makes it bold (and note that the first appearance of the page title in the article text should be bold);
    five makes it both.
  • Headings (as above) are made by typing two or three "equals" signs in front of the word or phrase and the same number after it. There are several advantages in doing it that way instead of typing apostrophes for bold text.

Summarise, preview, and saveEdit

When all looks good enough:

  1. add a few words of explanation in the "Summary:" line
  2. hit the "Show preview" button
  3. edit further if desired, then if really OK hit the "Save page" button.

More detailEdit

We are planning a page called Help:Formatting to cover advanced things like tables, colors/colours, and whatever else we can think of. Until that's well under way, other MediaWiki sites should be consulted:


If you'd like to try out the editing feature or practise some formatting techniques, please do it in the sandbox or your User page (or a subpage of it), rather than in an article.



To edit a MediaWiki page, click on the "Edit this page" (or just "edit") link at one of its edges. This will bring you to a page with a text box containing the wikitext: the editable source code from which the server produces the webpage. For the special codes, see below.

After adding to or changing the wikitext it is useful to press "Preview", which produces the corresponding webpage in your browser but does not make it publicly available yet (not until you press "Save"). Errors in formatting, links, tables, etc., are often much easier to discover from the rendered page than from the raw wikitext.

If you are not satisfied you can make more changes and preview the page as many times as necessary. Then write a short edit summary in the small text field below the edit-box and when finished press "Save". Depending on your system, pressing the "Enter" key while the edit box is not active (i.e., there is no typing cursor in it) may have the same effect as pressing "Save".

You may find it more convenient to copy and paste the text first into your favorite text edito], edit and spell check it there, and then paste it back into your web browser to preview. This way, you can also keep a local backup copy of the pages you have edited. It also allows you to make changes offline, but before you submit your changes, please make sure nobody else has edited the page since you saved your local copy (by checking the page history), otherwise you may accidentally revert someone else's edits. If someone has edited it since you copied the page, you'll have to merge their edits into your new version (you can find their specific edits by using the "diff" feature of the page history). These issues are handled automatically by the Mediawiki software if you edit the page online, retrieving and submitting the wikicode in the same text box.

Dummy edit Edit

If the wikitext is not changed no edit will be recorded and the edit summary is discarded.

A dummy edit is a change in wikitext that has no effect on the rendered page, such as changing the number of newlines at some position from 0 to 1 or from 2 to 3 or conversely (changing from 1 to 2 makes a difference, see below). This allows an edit summary, and is useful for correcting a previous edit summary, or an accidental marking of a previous edit as "minor" (see below). Also it is sometimes needed to refresh the cache of some item in the database.

Minor edits Edit

When editing a page, a logged-in user has the option of flagging the edit as a "minor edit". When to use this is somewhat a matter of personal preference. The rule of thumb is that an edit of a page that is spelling corrections, formatting, and minor rearranging of text should be flagged as a "minor edit". A major edit is basically something that makes the entry worth relooking at for somebody who wants to watch the article rather closely, so any "real" change, even if it is a single word. This feature is important, because users can choose to hide minor edits in their view of the Recent Changes page, to keep the volume of edits down to a manageable level.

The reason for not allowing a user who is not logged in to mark an edit as minor is that vandalism could then be marked as a minor edit, in which case it would stay unnoticed longer. This limitation is another reason to log in.

The wiki markup Edit

In the left column of the table below, you can see what effects are possible. In the right column, you can see how those effects were achieved. In other words, to make text look like it looks in the left column, type it in the format you see in the right column.

You may want to keep this page open in a separate browser window for reference. If you want to try out things without danger of doing any harm, you can do so in the Sandbox.

Sections, paragraphs, lists and lines Edit

What it looks like What you type

Start your sections with header lines:

New section



== New section ==

=== Subsection ===

==== Sub-subsection ====


A single newline has no effect on the layout.

But an empty line starts a new paragraph.

(<p> disables this paragraphing until </p> or the end of the section)

(in Cologne Blue two newlines and a div tag give just one newline; in the order newline, div tag, newline, the result is two newlines)

A single
has no
effect on the

But an empty line
starts a new paragraph.
You can break lines
without starting a new paragraph.

Sufficient as wikitext code is <br>, the XHTML code <br /> is not needed, the system produces this code.

You can break lines<br>
without starting a new paragraph.
  • Lists are easy to do:
    • start every line with a star
      • more stars means deeper levels
  • A newline
  • in a list

marks the end of the list.

  • Of course
  • you can
  • start again.
* Lists are easy to do:
** start every line with a star
*** more stars means deeper levels
*A newline
*in a list  
marks the end of the list.
*Of course
*you can
*start again.

  1. Numbered lists are also good
    1. very organized
    2. easy to follow
  2. A newline
  3. in a list

marks the end of the list.

  1. New numbering starts
  2. with 1.
# Numbered lists are also good
## very organized
## easy to follow
#A newline
#in a list  
marks the end of the list.
#New numbering starts
#with 1.
  • You can even do mixed lists
    1. and nest them
      • like this
        or have newlines
        inside lists
* You can even do mixed lists
*# and nest them
*#* like this<br>or have newlines<br>inside lists
  • You can also
    • break lines
      inside lists
      like this
* You can also
**break lines<br>inside lists<br>like this
Definition list 
list of definitions
the item's definition
; Definition list : list
of definitions
; item : the item's definition
A colon indents a line or paragraph.

A manual newline starts a new paragraph.

  • This is primarily for displayed material, but is also used for discussion on Talk pages.
: A colon indents a line or paragraph.
A manual newline starts a new paragraph.
IF a line of plain text starts with a space THEN
  it will be formatted exactly
    as typed;
  in a fixed-width font;
  lines won't wrap;
this is useful for:
  * pasting preformatted text;
  * algorithm descriptions;
  * program source code
  * ASCII art;
  * chemical structures;

WARNING If you make it wide, you force the whole page to be wide and hence less readable. Never start ordinary lines with spaces.

(see also below)
 IF a line of plain text starts with a space THEN
   it will be formatted exactly
     as typed;
   in a fixed-width font;
   lines won't wrap;
 this is useful for:
   * pasting preformatted text;
   * algorithm descriptions;
   * program source code
   * ASCII art;
   * chemical structures;
Centered text.
<center>Centered text.</center>
A horizontal dividing line: above

and below.

Mainly useful for separating threads on Talk pages.

A horizontal dividing line: above
and below. 

Summarizing the effect of a single newline: no effect in general, but it ends a list item or indented part; thus changing some text into a list item, or indenting it, is more cumbersome if it contains newlines, they have to be removed; see also w:Wikipedia:Don't use line breaks.

Links, URLs Edit

What it looks like What you type
Sue is reading the video policy.
  • First letter of target is automatically capitalized.
  • Internal spaces are automatically represented as underscores (typing an underscore has the same effect as typing a space, but is not recommended).

Thus the link above is to, which is the page with the name "Video policy".

Sue is reading the [[video policy]].

Link to a section on a page, when section editing does not work the link is treated as link to the page, i.e. to the top; this applies for:

  • links to non-existent sections
  • links in redirects
  • interwiki links
Link target and link label are different: answers.

(This is called a piped link).

Link target and link label are different: 
[[User:Larry Sanger|answers]]
Endings are blended into the link: official positions, genes
Endings are blended
into the link: [[official position]]s, [[gene]]s

Automatically hide stuff in parentheses: kingdom.

Automatically hide namespace: Village pump.

The server fills in the part after the | when you save the page. Next time you open the edit box you will see the expanded piped link. A preview interprets the abbreviated form correctly, but does not expand it yet in the edit box. Press Save and again Edit, and you will see the expanded version. The same applies for the following feature.

Automatically hide stuff in parentheses:
[[kingdom (biology)|]]. 
Automatically hide namespace:
[[Wikipedia:Village pump|]].
When adding a comment to a Talk page,

you should sign it. You can do this by adding three tildes for your user name:

Karl Wick

or four for user name plus date/time:

Karl Wick 08:10 Oct 5, 2002 (UTC)
When adding a comment to a Talk page,
you should sign it. You can do this by
adding three tildes for your user name:
: ~~~
or four for user name plus date/time:
: ~~~~
The weather in London is a page that doesn't exist yet.
  • You can create it by clicking on the link.
  • To create a new page:
    1. Create a link to it on some other page.
    2. Save that page.
    3. Click on the link you just made. The new page will open for editing.
  • Have a look at how to start a page guide and the naming conventions page for your project.
[[The weather in London]] is a page
that doesn't exist yet.

Redirect one article title to another by putting text like this in its first line.

#REDIRECT [[United States]]

A link to the page on the same subject in another language or, more generally, to a page on another wiki: fr:Wikipédia:Aide. For more info see MediaWiki User's Guide: Interwiki linking.

[[fr:Wikipédia:Aide]], [[:fr:Wikipédia:Aide]]
"What links here" and "Related changes" can be linked as:

Special:Whatlinkshere/Wikipedia:How to edit a page and Special:Recentchangeslinked/Wikipedia:How to edit a page

Wikipedia:How to edit a page]] and
Wikipedia:How to edit a page]]
External links: Nupedia, [1]
External links:
[ Nupedia],
Or just give the URL:
  • In the all symbols must be among: A-Z a-z 0-9 ._\/~%-+&#?!=()@ \x80-\xFF. If a URL contains a different character it should be converted; for example, ^ has to be written %5E (to be looked up in). A blank space can also be converted into an underscore.
Or just give the URL:

To link to books, you can use links. ISBN 0123456789X See Help:ISBN links

ISBN 0123456789X

Link to Request for Comments: RFC 123 (URL specified in mediawiki:Rfcurl)

RFC 123

To include links to non-image uploads such as sounds, use a "media" link.

Use links for dates, so everyone can set their own display order. Use Special:Preferences to change your own date display setting.
[[July 20]], [[1969]] , [[20 July]] [[1969]]
and [[1969]]-[[07-20]]
will all appear as 20 July 1969 if you set your date display preference to 1 January 2001.

Images Edit

What it looks like What you type
A picture: Wiki
  • For many projects, only images that have been uploaded to the same project can be used. To upload images, use the upload page. You can find the uploaded image on the image list
A picture: [[Image:Wiki.png]]

or, with alternate text (strongly encouraged)

- The Free Encyclopedia]] 
s render alternate text when not displaying an image -- for example, when the image isn't loaded, or in a text-only browser, or when spoken aloud. See for help on choosing alternate text. See for more options.

Clicking on an uploaded image displays a description page, which you can also link directly to: Image:Wiki.png


To include links to images shown as links instead of drawn on the page, use a "media" link.
Image of a Tornado

[[media:Tornado.jpg|Image of a Tornado]]

Character formatting Edit

<tr> <td> Use leading space on each line to keep newlines and multiple spaces, and get typewriter font:
arrow → italicslink </td> <td valign="bottom">
 arrow      &rarr;

</td> </tr>

<tr> <td> Use typewriter font:
arrow → italics link </td> <td valign="bottom">

<tt>arrow      &rarr;</tt>

</td> </tr>

<tr> <td> Show character references by writing out the leading ampersand:
&rarr; </td> <td valign="bottom">


</td> </tr>

<tr> <td> Commenting page source:
not shown in page

  • Used to leave comments in a page for future editors.

</td> <td>

<!-- comment here -->

</td> </tr> </table>

HTML Tables Edit

tables can be quite useful as well. For details on how to use them and discussion about when they are appropriate, see m:Help:Table.


Some part of a page may correspond in the edit box to just a reference to another page, in the form {{name}}, referring to the page "Template:name" (or if the name starts with a namespace prefix, it refers to the page with that name; if it starts with a colon it refers to the page in the main namespace with that name without the colon). This is called a template. For changing that part of the page, edit that other page. Sometimes a separate edit link is provided for this purpose. A convenient way to put such a link in a template is with a template like m:Template:ed. Note that the change also affects other pages which use the same template.

Page protectionEdit

In a few cases the link labeled "Edit this page" is replaced by the text "Protected page" (or equivalents in the language of the project). In that case the page can not be edited.

Position-independent wikitextEdit

Wikitext for which the result does not depend on the position in the wikitext page:

  • interlanguage links (see also above) - the mutual order is preserved, but otherwise the positions within the page are immaterial
  • category specification - ditto
  • __NOTOC__, __FORCETOC__, see Help:Section

Separating editsEdit

When moving or copying a piece of text within a page or from another page, and also making other edits, it is useful to separate these edits. This way the diff function can be usefully applied for checking these other edits.

External linksEdit


Wikis based on the new Unified Community Platform (UCP) may look or behave differently to what is described below.
See this page for more information on the new platform.

The VisualEditor

Wikia editor2

The classic editor

Editing on Fandom is as simple as clicking the "Edit" button on a page. Doing so will take you to an edit page where you can make changes to the page and add new information and media, correct errors, or update the formatting.

Depending on whether you are logged in or not, you may receive a different editing experience:

Most anonymous and newer users will see the VisualEditor. It's an editing experience based around showing you an accurate visual representation of your changes.
Help:Classic editor
Other users will see the classic editor, including the older visual editing experience and basic source wikitext editing.

Quick tips

  • Once you are in an editor, you can use the available tools to quickly add and remove information, change the formatting, add new images and videos, update the page's layout, and much more! Once you're done making your changes, just click the "Save page" button to update the page.
  • Don't be afraid if you "break" anything. All edits to a page are stored in the page history, and if something does go wrong you can simply revert to an older version.
  • If you want to edit a page without clicking the "Edit" button, you can press E on your keyboard, and the page will automatically load the preferred editor.
  • Editing is not yet possible through the Fandom app.

Choosing an editor

Logged in users can choose their default editor from a dropdown list in their user preferences (found here).

What it looks like What you type

Emphasize, strongly, very strongly.

  • These are double and triple apostrophes, not double quotes.
''Emphasize'', '''strongly''', '''''very strongly'''''.

You can also write italic and bold if the desired effect
is a specific font style rather than emphasis, as in mathematical formulae:

F = ma
  • However, the difference between these two methods is not very important for graphical browsers, and many people choose to ignore it.
You can also write <i>italic</i> and <b>bold</b> if the desired effect<br/>
is a specific font style rather than emphasis, as in mathematical formulae:
:<b>F</b> = <i>m</i><b>a</b>

A teletype (typewriter) font.

A teletype (<tt>typewriter</tt>) font.

You can use small text for captions.

You can use <small>small text</small> for captions.

You can strike out deleted material and underline new material.

You can <strike>strike out deleted material</strike> and <u>underline new material</u>.

Umlauts and accents: (See Meta-Wikimedia Help: Special characters)
è é ê ë ì í

Ú Û Ü ß à á
â ã ä å æ ç
è é ê ë ì í
î ï ñ ò ó ô
œ õ ö ø ù ú
û ü ÿ

è é ê ë ì í

&Agrave; &Aacute; &Acirc; &Atilde; &Auml; &Aring;<br/>
&AElig; &Ccedil; &Egrave; &Eacute; &Ecirc; &Euml;<br/>
&Igrave; &Iacute; &Icirc; &Iuml; &Ntilde; &Ograve;<br/>
&Oacute; &Ocirc; &Otilde; &Ouml; &Oslash; &Ugrave;<br/>
&Uacute; &Ucirc; &Uuml; &szlig; &agrave; &aacute;<br/>
&acirc; &atilde; &auml; &aring; &aelig; &ccedil;<br/>
&egrave; &eacute; &ecirc; &euml; &igrave; &iacute;<br/>
&icirc; &iuml; &ntilde; &ograve; &oacute; &ocirc;<br/>
&oelig; &otilde; &ouml; &oslash; &ugrave; &uacute;<br/>
&ucirc; &uuml; &yuml;

¿ ¡ « » § ¶ † ‡ • —

&iquest; &iexcl; &laquo; &raquo; &sect; &para; &dagger; &Dagger; &bull; &mdash;

Commercial symbols:
™ © ® ¢ € ¥ £ ¤

&trade; &copy; &reg; &cent; &euro; &yen; &pound; &curren;

Subscript: x2
Superscript: x2 or x²

  • The latter method of superscript can't be used in the most general context, but is preferred when possible (as with units of measurement) because most browsers have an easier time formatting lines with it.

ε0 = 8.85 × 10−12 C² / J m.

1 hectare = 1 E4 m²

Subscript: x<sub>2</sub><br/>
Superscript: x<sup>2</sup> or x&sup2;

or in projects with the templates sub and sup:

Subscript: x{{sub|2}}<br/>
Superscript: x{{sup|2}}

&epsilon;<sub>0</sub> = 8.85 &times; 10<sup>&minus;12</sup> C&sup2; / J m.

1 [[hectare]] = [[1 E4 m²]]

Greek characters:
α β γ δ ε ζ
η θ ι κ λ μ ν
ξ ο π ρ σ ς
τ υ φ χ ψ ω

&alpha; &beta; &gamma; &delta; &epsilon; &zeta;<br/>
&eta; &theta; &iota; &kappa; &lambda; &mu; &nu;<br/>
&xi; &omicron; &pi; &rho;  &sigma; &sigmaf;<br/>
&tau; &upsilon; &phi; &chi; &psi; &omega;<br/>
&Gamma; &Delta; &Theta; &Lambda; &Xi; &Pi;<br/>
&Sigma; &Phi; &Psi; &Omega;

Math characters:
∫ ∑ ∏ √ − ± ∞
≈ ∝ ≡ ≠ ≤ ≥ ←
× · ÷ ∂ ′ ″
∇ ‰ ° ∴ ℵ ø
∈ ∉ ∩ ∪ ⊂ ⊃ ⊆ ⊇
¬ ∧ ∨ ∃ ∀ ⇒ ⇔
→ ↔

&int; &sum; &prod; &radic; &minus; &plusmn; &infin;<br/>
&asymp; &prop; &equiv; &ne; &le; &ge; &larr;<br/>
&times; &middot; &divide; &part; &prime; &Prime;<br/>
&nabla; &permil; &deg; &there4; &alefsym; &oslash;<br/>
&isin; &notin; &cap; &cup; &sub; &sup; &sube; &supe;<br/>
&not; &and; &or; &exist; &forall; &rArr; &hArr;<br/>
&rarr; &harr;

x2   ≥   0 true.

  • To space things out, use non-breaking spaces - &nbsp;.
  • &nbsp; also prevents line breaks in the middle of text, this is useful in formulae.
<i>x</i><sup>2</sup>&nbsp;&nbsp;&ge;&nbsp;&nbsp;0 true.

Complicated formulae:
  $ \sum_{n=0}^\infty \frac{x^n}{n!} $

<math>\sum_{n=0}^\infty \frac{x^n}{n!}</math>

For comparison for the following examples:
arrow →

italics link

arrow      &rarr;


Use <nowiki> to suppress interpretation of wiki markup, but interpret character references and remove newlines and multiple spaces:
arrow → ''italics'' [[link]]

<nowiki>arrow      &rarr;


Use <pre> to suppress interpretation of wiki markup and keep newlines and multiple spaces, and get typewriter font, but interpret character references:

arrow      →

<pre>arrow      &rarr;



Setting Meaning
VisualEditor Shows the VisualEditor on all communities.
Classic rich-text editor
(where available)
Shows the classic rich-text editor where available.
If not, the source editor is shown.
Source editor Shows the basic source editor on all communities.

Anonymous users will almost always see the VisualEditor by default. In a few specific cases, the VisualEditor may not be available on a particular community.

Additionally, the alternative editors can still be found under the Edit button dropdown - for example, you can still access the classic editor from the dropdown even if the VisualEditor is the default.

Further help and feedback

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.