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Wikipedia:Patent nonsense

On Wikipedia, we get lots of brilliant prose, but occasionally some patent nonsense. This falls into a couple of categories:

  1. Total nonsense, i.e., text that has no assignable meaning at all. This tends to be created after the consumption of too much alcohol.
  2. Stuff that, while apparently meaningful after a fashion, is so completely and irremediably confused that no intelligent person can be expected to try to make heads or tails of it.

Not to be confused with...

The following, while often regrettable, is not patent nonsense:

  • Really poorly written stuff. (see Why Aren't These Pages Copyedited)
  • Partisan screed, or opinion masquerading as fact. (reword it for a neutral point of view)
  • Religious excogitations. (Make it factual. Yes, there are ways of doing this; e.g. add phrases like "Followers of X hold that...")
  • Incompetent and/or immature stuff. (Well, it's not nonsense, but perhaps it does deserve to be greatly improved. So improve it.)
  • Flame bait entries. (Don't take the bait; instead, replace it with something that actually adds to the quality of the Wikipedia.)
  • Vandalism (see dealing with vandalism)

Dealing with patent nonsesnse

There are various ways to deal with total nonsense - use your good judgement to decide which is most appropriate:

However, if anybody objects, because they believe that the content is not total nonsense, then it's best to discuss the issue with them, and try to reach a consensus. In particular, if someone says that they think can rework the "nonsense" into something worthwhile, then please give them some time and space to do so.

If an article contains nothing but patent nonsense, then use your good judgement to decide whether to:

See also: wikipedia:Policies and guidelines

All Wikipedia text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License

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