IRC/FAQ

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You have probably been directed to this page by a channel topic or join message. It's usually best to consult here if you have questions like why people use [[wikilinks]] in chat or why publishing channel logs will result in permanent banning.

Wikimedia IRC channels are fully explained elsewhere; the following FAQs usually assume policies and practices like those on #wikipedia, as it's the most populated.

Can I publish logs of the channel?[edit]

No. Doing so may result in being permanently banned. This policy is explained more fully on the IRC channels page--questions and discussions about the policy should be directed there.

Can I get clickable wikilinks?[edit]

Scripts exist for some IRC clients to enable clicking on [[wikilinks]]; they are available at w:Wikipedia:Scripts. Since typing such links is so much more convenient than typing out full URLs, they are almost invariably used. If your client does not have a script, you can always paste the text between the [[ and ]] into the search box.

Why did I get disconnected?[edit]

There could be a lot of reasons, but you should check to make sure you aren't using a wireless router affected by CVE-2006-1068, which causes the router to disconnect when certain strings containing "DCC SEND" are used on IRC. Troublemakers use this vulnerability to disconnect people from IRC. Please connect to freenode on port 8001 rather than 6667. This will prevent you from being disconnected, and discourage the troublemakers by removing their targets.

How do I ask for help/an answer?[edit]

Politely. In general it's much more effective to just ask your question or state the situation you would like addressed, rather than asking if there is an admin around, or if there's someone who can help you.

Can I paste long excerpts in the channel?[edit]

It's preferable to use a paste service like p.defau.lt instead, and link to it.

What do the channel modes mean?[edit]

Channel modes for freenode are explained in their documentation. Freenode uses a custom IRC server with some extended modes.

Who are the operators?[edit]

You can view a live list of channel operators by querying chanserv with the command:

/msg chanserv access #wikipedia list

For other channels, replace #wikipedia with the name of the channel. For an on-wiki list of Wikipedia channel operators, see IRC/wikipedia/Operators.

I'm banned from the channel, and I didn't do anything. What do I do?[edit]

Most likely, someone (or some large group of someones) from your ISP, or someone who has a nick like yours, got banned for good reason, or you're using a proxy or web gateway that is banned from the channel. Head into #wikimedia-ops and see if someone can get you straightened out.

I got banned for something I did, but it wasn't fair. What do I do?[edit]

  1. Take a look at the relevant channel page. It probably is at «http://lang_code.wiki_name.org/wiki/Project:IRC». They may have their own appeal process, their own set of rules, and appeal recommendations.
  2. After a couple days, message the op who banned you. Conduct yourself in a calm clear headed manner. Try to explain politely when the situation happened (mention the day, time, and timezone), and what you came up with after analysing the logs. Was it something you did wrong - if so, what? Was something misinterpreted? What would you do to avoid a similar situation happening next time? Don't feel shy to apologize; admitting mistakes is the key quality toward resolving such situation. Please be polite, even if you think it was unfair; ranting never helps.
  3. If you're not happy with the outcome, wait a couple days, and then try the appeal process recommended by the channel. It usually is a good solution, especially if the channel is in foreign language and has good documentation.
  4. If there is none, use #wikimedia-ops, and make your case calmly and concisely. Again mention the channel affected, day, time, and timezone. Indicate what was the main point of disagreement with the op, and ask to interpret the situation for you. The ops might communicate internally and collaborate to give you better advice, so please be patient and don't leave! Set aside around half of an hour when you are around and would not be disturbed, preferably during daytime in the relevant timezone. This is a learning experience.
    1. Do the other ops agree with your interpretation?
    2. What hints can they give to help you analyse the situation?
    Then you would be able to come up with suggestions how to avoid such situation in the future. If your suggestions are good, your ban would be more likely to be removed, or its removal may be expedited.
  5. If you're still unhappy with the outcome, please provide the complete information to the channel founder - include time of the channel issue, nickname of the op, time of a relevant discussion in #wikimedia-ops. The founder can be found using «/msg chanserv info #channel». Briefly summarize your issue and wait for a response for 2-3 days, after which you may remind the founder about the issue one more time.

Some DOs:

  1. Be specific and concise.
  2. Take notes of the time and date of the issues.
  3. Write logs to re-read and re-analyse them later. In browsers, use CIRC or ChatZilla if you can't install a client.
  4. Be ready to a plain "no". Then the situation may have to be revisited again in several months, and the ops might appreciate your patience and respect of their decision, and re-consider it.

Some do NOTs:

  1. Do not vent (too much). It is easier for a chanop to handle the issue if it is stated clearly.
  2. Do not take the issue personally.
  3. Do not expect immediate ban removal. Even a promise to expedite ban removal is a step forward - the ops reserve the right to keeping you out, and that time being clear and finite is productive.
  4. Do not try to distance yourself from the ops. We are all here to improve the channel.
  5. Do not use new nicknames. It is more considerate to be yourself at all times, be that during a ban appeal process or not.

Is #wikipedia an official Wikipedia channel?[edit]

No. It's a gathering place for Wikipedians, and many experienced users are ops in channel, but anything you hear there should be taken with a grain of salt. It could be coming from a Board member, but it could also be coming from a newbie who found the site five minutes before you did. The Foundation does not monitor or control what goes on there.