You may be
an innocent victim of collateral damage
, where you are accidentally affected by a block of some other user.
, your account or IP may have been blocked because it appears to have been responsible for (or connected to) a serious breach of Wikipedia's policies
If your account was blocked by mistake, it will be reactivated very quickly, as soon as you let an administrator know of the problem. Otherwise, there is a rapid appeal process which obtains quick review by other independent administrators, and brief discussion of the matter. One aim of blocking in some cases is to ensure the user learns from the incident, and that the issues don't happen again.
Q1: What is a block?
prevents a user account, an IP address, or a range of IP addresses from editing Wikipedia, either partially or entirely. Blocked users can still open, access, and read
any article or page on Wikipedia; they just cannot modify or edit
any pages that is restricted by the block. Blocks can be applied to restrict users from editing all pages
on Wikipedia, or it can be applied in order to restrict the user from editing only specific articles or pages, or from editing any pages that are within a given namespace (an example would be to restrict the user from editing any talk pages
). Blocks are used to protect Wikipedia from possible or further improper use, damage, disruption
, or other activity that may breach Wikipedia's editorial policies
. Once a block expires, the user will be allowed to edit as they could before, and the event becomes history unless problems reoccur. Automated features
also identify usage which apparently should be blocked; this can be quickly rectified and resolved if it is incorrectly enforcing a block.
Q2: I don't understand why I was blocked.
You may have breached a behavior, policy or guideline
, or rule without knowing that you've done so. The block notice you receive will contain the reason why an administrator has blocked you from editing, usually with a link to the relevant policy or guideline that was broken; read it carefully and try to understand how your behavior did not follow the given policy. A block is not intended as punishment; it's meant to prevent you from making further disruptive edits
, either in good faith
, as vandalism
, or maliciously and in bad faith
. If you can show that you won't continue the behavior, the block should be lifted. If you don't understand any detail of the policy, or still don't understand the action or reason that caused you to receive a block, you can ask the administrator that blocked you for help, or for any clarification on details that may be unclear to you. Administrators are expected to answer your questions and reasonably explain their actions
. Don't ask for help or respond with questions within the actual unblock request
, though, as it should be only used after you understand the reasons for the block, and when you are ready to appeal your block with a request to be unblocked, and provide an explanation.
Q3: Should I create a new account to appeal? Should I edit anonymously when my account is blocked?
No, do not do either one of these things. Doing so is against Wikipedia's policy on block evasion
, and can lead to further blocks and restrictions being applied to you as a result. To properly appeal your block and without causing further disruption or breaking any additional rules, you need to do this while you are logged into your blocked account or while you are under the same IP address. There's nothing to be afraid of; you will receive fair treatment and respect on Wikipedia, and your unblock request will be genuinely considered so long as your unblock request is also genuine - provide a reasonable unblock request that is sincere and explains that you understand what caused you to be blocked, and give assurance that the issue will not continue further. Be honest, be civil
, and don't "play games" or use the unblock request in order to be malicious, inappropriate, or further disruptive. You'll do far better to appeal your block while logged into your blocked account (and accept the block if that's what is decided) than to be sanctioned and further blocked for engaging in any kind of block evasion
. Wikipedia has had users who were blocked with an expiration set for a number of hours, days, months, even years
- and who accepted it, and behaved and acted appropriately and accordingly. Once their block expired, they were welcomed back to Wikipedia, and "made good" as respected editors shortly afterwards. Once a block is over, it's over.
Q4: I've never done anything wrong and I was blocked! Please advise.
Do you use an ISP
or web accelerator
that involves shared IP addresses? Common examples include Comcast
, and colleges
. Are you connecting to the internet using a public network, or are you connected through the wireless broadband (3G, LTE, 4G, 5G, etc) from your mobile device? If any of these cases apply to your current connection to the internet, you may have been affected by collateral damage
(a block that was intended for another user or person located on the same network or range as yours, and that unintentionally affected you as a result). Also, if you are using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to connect to your network or the internet, try logging out of your VPN connection, closing the VPN connection, and exiting out of your VPN software. Afterwards, check again to see if you are still blocked. It may just be a case where the IP range used by the VPN is blocked, but the IP or range used by your actual network or connection is fine. In such cases, you should request an account
to be created for you. In nearly all cases, using an account to edit Wikipedia will allow you to do so even when the IP address or range of your network is blocked; these blocks only affect users who attempt to edit Wikipedia without an account.
Q5: I did something a bit wrong, but how do I get unblocked now?
A5: All blocks can be reviewed by, and discussed with, a different administrator who is not involved, if requested. The preferred way to appeal a block is to place
|reason=Your reason here ~~~~
One common requirement for unblocking is to be able to answer the question, "do you understand that what you did was inappropriate for this site, and can we have your assurance that you won't do it again?"
In the case where blocks are applied with with a very short duration, especially for good cause, the usual response that you will receive from an unblock request is that it is denied, and that you'll just need to wait until it expires before you can resume editing. Once the block does
expire, you'll be able to continue editing Wikipedia as you could before, and you can consider the block to be in the past – just make sure that you learn from what you did wrong. Repeated instances of inappropriate behavior or violations of policies or guidelines
when a block has been recently placed because of the same behavior) will often result in a block being applied with a duration that is longer than the previous block, so it is important to learn from blocks when they occur. Keep in mind that blocks are not intended to be punitive; they are used to prevent
further disruption, and to help misplaced or misguided users when words, notices, messages, and warnings don't seem sufficient and are not causing the issue or disruption
Q6: It says I've been "indefinitely" blocked. What does that mean and how do I get unblocked?
"Indefinite" does not necessarily mean "forever" or "infinite". It means "however long is needed for the user to address the issue".
This can be minutes, hours – or indeed the user may never do so.
An indefinite block
mean that you are "blocked forever". It simply means the blocking administrator did not set a time limit or expiration for the block. In this case, the blocked user will usually be required
to appeal their block and discuss the matter with an administrator before an unblock will be considered. An indefinite block could be applied because the user needs to confirm that things are okay and that nothing's wrong, or it could be due to a problem that needs attention, or a problem that is deemed to need the user to acknowledge that they understand that a behavior was inappropriate first
before they will be unblocked.
Typical examples are where the account owner must be contacted (e.g. suspected "hacking" of their account), and users whose behavior was severely inappropriate (such as making threats or engaging in the repeated use of personal attacks
toward other editors, engaging in "outing
", repeated instances of vandalism
or edit warring
, repeated incidents where the user has failed to listen
, and other matters). Wikipedia is an encyclopedia community
; its ability to exist as well as continue to be a significantly relevant and highly referenced resource on the internet is made possible because of the collective hard work and the amount of time that each member of the community gives to Wikipedia for free
. Because of the importance and the impact that the community has with Wikipedia's continued sustainability and relevance on the internet, it is both a policy
and a founding principle
that members of the community must treat one other with respect and civility. Inappropriate or unacceptable behavior (such as those listed in the examples above) is not tolerated. For other issues, a user may need to stop, learn our site norms, and confirm they will not repeat the behavior (or will edit in accordance with certain conditions), before an unblock can take place.
Q7: It says I've been "autoblocked" because of another person whom I don't even know!
See this page
for an explanation of how autoblocks work. If you use a shared ISP
, etc.), you may be affected by collateral damage
(a block that was intended for another user or person due to their
disruptive behavior and who were located on the same network or range as yours, and that unintentionally affected you as a result). An administrator will sort this out as soon as it's drawn to their attention – please follow the instructions under the "Autoblocked?
" section on your block page, or alternatively, here
Q8: I want to edit Wikipedia, but I keep getting blocked because of others on the same network as me!
If you are an unregistered user, it's recommended that you create an account
. Shared IP addresses such as school and company networks or proxy servers
are frequently blocked for vandalism which often affects many innocent editors on the same network. However, registered users in good standing can request
existing blocks on their IP address
be "softened" to only affect anonymous editors on their network so that they may continue contributing. See also Wikipedia:Why create an account?
If your IP address
is blocked, you may need to create your account at home, on another computer, phone or tablet using a different connection, or (in rare cases) in another country. You can also request that an account be created for you
Many rotating IP addresses of ISPs practising shared IP addresses are blocked as being "proxies" or "zombies" because of the large number of different users sharing the IP. On these computers, logged-in users will be automatically blocked immediately. If you encounter such a case, please follow the unblocking request steps or consult a CheckUser