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Help:Contents

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This page provides assistance with the most common questions about Wikipedia.

To start, click on what you need assistance with below, or search all the help pages using the search box to the right. You may also browse the Help menu or the Help directory.

Read or find an article

The Readers' FAQ and our about page contain the most commonly sought information about Wikipedia.

For simple searches, there is a search box at the top of every page. Type what you are looking for in the box. Partial matches will appear in a dropdown list. Select any page in the list to go to that page. Or, select the magnifying glass "Go" button, or press ↵ Enter, to go to a full search result. For advanced searches, see Help:Searching.

There are other ways to browse and explore Wikipedia articles; many can be found at Portal:Contents. Also see our disclaimer for cautions about Wikipedia's limitations.

Edit an article

Contributing is easy: see how to edit a page. For a quick summary on participating, see contributing to Wikipedia. For a listing of introductions and tutorials by topic, see getting started. Or play the Wikipedia Adventure to learn to edit in an hour. The Simplified Manual of Style and Cheatsheet can remind you of basic wiki markup.

Be bold in improving articles! When adding facts, please provide references so others may verify them. If you are affiliated with the article subject, please see our conflict of interest guideline.

If you feel someone is bullying you or if you don't understand why your edits are being reverted, you can ask for help at the Help desk or at the Teahouse. Volunteers will respond as soon as possible.

If you're looking for places you can help out, the community portal is the place to go. You can practice editing and experiment in a sandbox.

Report a problem with an article

If there is a problem with an article about yourself, a family member, a friend or a colleague, please read Biographies of living persons/Help and, if necessary, add a discussion to the biographies of living persons noticeboard.

If you spot a problem with an article, you can fix it directly, by clicking on the "Edit" link at the beginning of that page. See the "edit an article" section of this page for more information.

If you don't feel ready to fix the article yourself, please post a message on the article's talk page. This will bring the matter to the attention of others who work on that article. There is a "Talk" link at the beginning of every article page.

Alternatively you can contact us. If it's an article about you or your organization, see Contact us – Subjects.

Create a new article or upload media

Check Your first article to see if your topic is appropriate, then the Article wizard will walk you through creating the article.

Once you have created an article, see Writing better articles for guidance on how to improve it and what to include (like reference citations).

For contributing images, audio or video files, see the Introduction to uploading images. Then the Upload wizard will guide you through that process.

Factual questions

If searching Wikipedia has not answered your question (for example, questions like "Which country has the world's largest fishing fleet?"), try the Reference Desk. Volunteers there will attempt to answer your questions on any topic, or point you towards the information you need.

Stuck?

For your convenience, answers have been recorded for the most frequently asked questions.

You can find also where to ask questions or make comments.

You can ask questions about using Wikipedia at the Help desk or at the Teahouse. Volunteers will respond as soon as possible.

Or ask for help on your talk page and a volunteer will visit you there!

You can get live help with editing in the help chatroom.

For help with technical issues, ask at the Village pump.

Directories

  • Directory: main list of directories and indexes.

Help related

  • Help directory: for informative, instructional and consultation pages.
  • Request directory: for services and assistance that can be requested on Wikipedia.
  • Tips library: where you can digest how to use Wikipedia in bite-sized morsels.

Protocols and conventions

Community related

  • Departments: for the different divisions of Wikipedia.
  • Editor's index: for everything an editor needs to know to work on Wikipedia.
  • Essay directory: for Wikipedia namespace essays.
  • Dashboard: for current discussions taking place throughout Wikipedia.
  • WikiProjects: for people who want to work together as a team to improve Wikipedia.

MediaWiki software

  • Wiki markup: for the syntax used by Wikipedia to format a page.
  • HTML: for HTML5 elements, or tags and their attribute.
  • Templates: for templates used within Wikipedia.

Help by topic

Tip of the day

How to easily recall a username

Trying to recall an editor's username can be challenging. There are various ways to solve this:

  1. If you remember the beginning of the username:
    1. Click on: user-contributions or contributions link either at the top or side of any article page
    2. Type the first couple of letters in the username box: wait 15-seconds and the box will magically appear with usernames starting with that letter combination
    3. If the username is still not there, type in another letter and wait. Usernames are case, punctuation, and space sensitive, so if a username is CamelCased, has punctuation, or has spaces, you will have to try those variations too.
  2. If you have ever conversed with them, you could check the histories of your own talk page and talk page archives. Set your view to (500).
  3. In your contributions, you could limit the namespace to user talk, and that would give you the names of all the users you have posted to on their talk pages. The same with the talk namespace (via your contributions).
  4. You could also search the talk namespace for your own signature, to locate the threads where others may have replied to you
  5. Where do they hang out? What are they renowned for? If you can remember where they have posted messages, then you can find their username.
  6. Users Search box for users by name or official capacity
Read more:
To add this auto-updating daily tip to your user page, use {{totd}}

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