Community Central


Community Central

Have you ever actually read a site's Terms of Use? After all, it's a document you "sign" when you make an account on Fandom or most other sites you join. But they are long, and dry, and frankly more than most people want to read.

But it's good to know what you are signing. After all, you might be signing to give the company your first born child. Or to agree the contract will be void if there's a zombie apocalypse (yes those are real examples). One company even offered $1000 to the person who read enough of the document to find the offer! It took four months before anyone did!

So while we definitely recommend that you read the ToU, we have also written a simpler version of the user conduct section to help everyone understand what's required of you. And it’s a growing trend within tech companies, particularly ones with a focus on trust and safety like ours, to have more user-friendly documentation so people who aren’t lawyers can understand what it is that they’re agreeing to.

Things change, and we find better ways to write our rules, so we look at our policy pages and review and update them over time - something I've recently been doing with the community guidelines.

We use the word "guidelines" because some of the points aren't really hard and fast rules, but things we encourage in order to keep things harmonious and productive, such as "be good to each other" and the advice to build your content to attract new people. But most of the sections are just more readable and detailed explanations of parts of the ToU.

New Community Guideline Updates

So what's changed? Well the out-of-date jokes are gone, even the one about Harry Potter. The "Look out for others" section has mostly been moved down and tweaked. That's because we don't want people to think they have to get involved in conflict or drama.

There is a new section for humor. This is tricky, because while we don't want abusive or offensive content, we also want to allow space for lighter humor. So we've extended this section to give some examples of content that shouldn't be on Fandom.

Bad language is also sometimes a tricky one. Some wikis, including this one, do not allow any at all. Wikis that have a topic likely to be mainly read by children are in this category too. But some cursing may be okay on wikis with a more mature audience, as long as it doesn't get abusive or slide into racial, homophobic, or other discriminatory language.

There are now a couple of paragraphs talking about shocking content and threats too. Both are, of course, forbidden. The guidelines now say more about what is considered shocking.

These guidelines don't list all the do's and don't's for Fandom, but they give a good starting point and cover some of the most important things for everyone to know. Most wikis will also need guidelines specific to that community, so it's good to make sure your wiki’s rules and guidelines are up-to-date too!

Fandom Staff
Hi, I'm Sannse, a community support director at Fandom. I love making jewelry, documentaries and I have a new aquarium with cherry barbs - cute little fish!
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