The purpose of this page is to document the local rename policies and practices of individual projects. Please explain how you think about renames on your project and what sorts of common sense practices you have developed in doing renames. Please also feel free to mention unique policies or customs your project may have regarding renames, linking to local pages or translations where available. Make multiple entries if you have experience on multiple projects. Feel free to share this page with other users you know who have experience in renames. Alphabetical order.
I can distinghed three types of renamings: 1) SUL requests by users of other wikis. This is the most common case. For this users we have a short description in English referring to common practices in the English Wikipedia. 2) Usurpations. They are treated with flexibility if the usurped user is long inactive and with only few edits. I have not ever found any response from usurped users and there has been no controversy. 3) Renaming of local users usually with short experience. You need to explain what is SUL, that they have to request alse renaming in other wikis, explaing where and how, or that they can simply register a new account discarding the old one. Relevant page is ca:VP:CNU both with requests and some instructions usually interpreted by bureaucrats with common sense. Currently there are only two active bureaucrats but requests are handled in a reasonable time. --Vriullop (talk) 07:29, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
Project has dedicated pages for regular renames and usurpations. Most of rename requests come from users which changed or plan to change names in other projects. In case when renames in other projects are hard to trace with logs, user need to demonstrate ownership of accounts. Commons is common projects, so target name should be unique, otherwise requester need to usurp accounts on other projects or sort out issues with their owners. Usurpation is simple when desired name was not used or created as result of login name unification. If existing account has useful uploads of own works, requester need to get owner permission. --EugeneZelenko (talk) 03:19, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Renaming of acount is usually non-problematic, only when some user wants to rename more than once we give him longer waiting time. WHen usurpating, acounts with edits are usurped when there are only few edits years ago and we wait about three months after notificating of this user. JAn Dudík (talk) 05:47, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
Quoting from our local page for renaming requests (wikibooks:de:Wikibooks:Benutzernamen_ändern):
Rules for the usurpation of an existing username (For the related Discussion see: here)
An account can only be usurped if following requirements are met:
- if the account has 0 contributions
- if there are no entries in the logs for the account that is requested to be usurped, except the entry regarding its creation and
- if the original user was informed of the request and either agrees to the usurpation or isn’t answering at all. The time the user has to answer is 7 days, counting from the date the user has been informed.
- In case of a positive response from the original user on his or her talk page an usurpation is also possible – even if the user has several edits. Please contact the user yourself.
Requests written in English are unproblematic as long as they follow above rules. All local bureaucrats are only active infrequently, so responses may take a while. The bureaucrats can be reached by mail, if they do not respond - see wikibooks:de:Wikibooks:Benutzernamen_ändern#Keine Antwort auf deine Nachfrage?. -- John N. (talk) 05:25, 9 May 2013 (UTC)
Nothing special here. We have a page for renaming requests (de:Wikipedia:Benutzernamen_ändern) and normally this is done within a few days. Most rejections were due to possible new SUL conflicts (we don't rename if a non-SUL account with a lot of edits in another language exists). For usurpating accounts we have relatively strict rules, no edit in the main namespace should be made by the account to be usurpated (we make exceptions for small edits, which are not copyrightable). --APPER (talk) 13:14, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
Same as de.wiki, it wouldn't hurt to tell that we don't get any request regarding name changes since we have very less contributors. But when they do they request it on the community page and is done within a few days. --Glacious (talk) 20:55, 5 May 2013 (UTC)
Normally we only get renames for users who have a small number of edits who are going through a global rename and have started on their home project; so usually the "main" rename (e.g., the 1000 edit account on enwiki) has already been done. As such we nearly always just go ahead and do the rename after the usual checks (the name doesn't exist on other projects, it isn't offensive or abusive). For users who have no edits on other projects and no substantive edits on en.wikibooks, we generally don't rename and instead tell them to create a new account (by substantive I mean something more than 1 or 2 edits that are typo correcting - often the only edit is in the rename request). I've only ever had one vanishing request, and as that had already been granted on enwiki I did the same on enwikibooks. For usurps they are declined if the usurp target has any substantive edits unless the owner of the target consents. QuiteUnusual (talk) 20:07, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
The English Wikipedia does a large number of renames. Our renames are done at en:WP:CHUS for renames where the target account does not exist and en:WP:CHUU for renames where we must rename the target out of the way first. We generally give simple renames freely to unblocked users who select new usernames that comply with policy. We reluctantly grant multiple renames to the same person or if the rename will invade the SUL claim of a user on another project. If a person wants to take over an existing account name, they must go to en:WP:CHUU and notify the existing user, who may object to the rename during a one week waiting period. We don't let a person take over an account created in the last six months to a year or if the existing account has more than a handful of meaningful edits. Our rename policies and practices are documented at en:WP:U, en:WP:CHUG, en:WP:CHU, and en:WP:CLEANSTART. Disputes involving renames are discussed at en:WP:BN. An individual bureaucrat may grant or deny a request and a group of bureaucrats may overturn the decision of an individual bureaucrat. Some people at en:WP:CHU/A and some bots help the bureaucrats by researching the requests and summarizing relevant data so that the bureaucrat may make an informed decision. Renames that would result in an obscenity, a company name, a role account, the name of a celebrity, or a name that otherwise would impersonate a real-life entity is denied. Names that are very similar to an existing user's name may be granted if they are not requested with the intent to impersonate. A user may exercise their right to vanish and request that their userpage be deleted and that their account name be scrambled to prevent further use. MBisanz talk 22:34, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
- Uh... what he said. EVula // talk // 23:42, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
MBisanz has encapsulated the EnWiki rename process rather well; which, to be honest, can be expected as I believe he is one of the most prolific renamers. For the sake of completeness I'll add:
- Standard rename
- Users in good standing who are not seen as "abusing" the rename provision can have their accounts renamed
- New account names may not be obscene, inflammatory, harrassing, used for advertising, indicating a role account, impersonatory, or, in general, already in use.
- If the requested account has already been created, but the target account has been sufficiently inactive and possessing few enough edits, we may allow the usurpation of the target name, similar to what is going to happen under global SUL with conflicts--we rename the target first and then the requestor
- Courtesy vanishing rename
- A user in good standing (or very, very rarely, one who is not, but can demonstrate that personal real-life privacy can be harmed) who has made the decision that he or she will no longer be editing the English Wikipedia project can ask that their account be renamed to something more anonymous.
- The main purpose of this is to obfuscate, not completely remove, the link between the edits and the psuedonym that has created them. This is often because people use similar pseudonyms for various projects on the internet, and this allows them to continue their activity elsewhere.
- If there is reason to believe that more separation may be needed (for example, someone not realizing clearly that everything on Wikipedia is permanent, and posted links about their incarceration in jail under their real name), after the vanishing, we may oversight the rename log and have the SUL deleted so that the account is even more firmly hidden and removed.
- This courtesy is almost never given to people under sanction, or under threat of sanction by EnWiki due process (ArbCom) unless the potential for real-life conflict can be shown.
The only thing I can add to the above comments is that if a user with very few or no edits requests courtesy vanishing, we generally tell them to just abandon the account as the rename will expand the likelihood of the account being found as it gets added to multiple logs. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 05:55, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
- I would like to add a bit about what happens to users with spam usernames. Generally, if their spamming has not been widespread or persistent, we issue a "soft" block, meaning they are free to simply abandon their current name and create another account. This is usually not an issue as these accounts normally don't manage to make more than one or two edits before being blocked. However, the option is left open to them to post an unblock request that includes their proposed new username should they desire to keep attribution for whatever edits they have already made. This same procedure is also used for users that have mildly offensive usernames and have not been trolling or vandalizing. So, these users are blocked, but it is a "username only" block, they are free to return to editing the moment they come up with an acceptable alternative name. Not sure how this will jive with the new meta-based rename procedure. Beeblebrox (talk) 20:01, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
en.wikisource has no written guidelines on renaming or usurpation; assessments of rename requests are left to bureaucrat discretion.
Requests for renaming are posted at wikisource:Wikisource:Administrator's noticeboard#Bureaucrat requests. We only get about one such request per month, and genuine requests are pretty much always actioned.
Usurpation requests are generally considered acceptable if the target account has very few edits and these are at least several years old. The holder of the target account is messaged and emailed, and given a week in which to register opposition to usurpation. If no objection is voiced, then usurpation proceeds.
Hesperian 10:33, 5 May 2013 (UTC)
I am not a crat at this project, but most of the Wikivoyages that existed before the WMF merger have a special extension for bureaucrats to use, that allows the merging and deleting of accounts to clean up after imports. --Rschen7754 04:56, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
- I am a 'crat. We don't do a lot of renames, but they do come up occasionally; I see no problem with offloading that to global stewards. The real concern is as Rschen mentions: The user merge operation that allows us to assign edits imported from old wikis to current users after verification. (Edits from old wikis were assigned to users in the database with their username prefixed with "(WT-en) " or "(WV-en) ". The merge operation allows us, as bureaucrats, to merge those old attribution-only accounts with the user's new en.Wikivoyage or global account.) LtPowers (talk) 13:31, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
- I'm also a Wikivoyage bureaucrat - for reference the "user merge" tool in question is http://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/Special:UserMerge and it is used fairly regularly as users of the old site discover Wikivoyage and want their old contributions credited to the Wikivoyage account. See http://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/Special:Log/usermerge for a history of account merges. -- Ryan • (talk) • 19:18, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
- Is there any way to automate the process to get it all done now or do you expect it to end after a certain period of time? MBisanz talk 22:20, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
- The process cannot be automated, because it depends on the user self-identifying to us as owning both accounts in question. I would expect an extremely long tail on the frequency of requests, though at some point I suppose we could just cut it off and say "sorry, we can't do that anymore". LtPowers (talk) 17:58, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
- We ensure that we are renaming to a non-reserved account, or else that the owner of this reserved account agrees with the renaming.
- If you are in the process of renaming your account on the various wikis, we check your userpage on your main wiki to see whether you have redirected your old name to your new one, or if you have a comment on your discussion page detailing your intent to rename.
- When renaming an account to one that already exists, we move the existing account to _(usurped). If the usurped account has few contributions globally and no recent activity, we rename it. Otherwise we try to contact the owner by email or on his talk page and give him a week’s time to protest, and we will usurp the account only if he agrees or does not reply.
- When renaming accounts, we move pages creating redirects. Stephen G. Brown (talk) 16:58, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
- Renamings are handled based on requests on-wiki, and are usually only accepted if the new name was available (no local/global account), the requesting user has a significant amount of edits, and the username was not inappropiate (according to local username policy). It could be rejected if the user has already been renamed previously, or if the change was minimal (users were then encouraged to change their signature). A reason for the name could be requested if considered necessary by the attending 'crat, but no real poicy existed on this.
- Usurpation was limited to accounts with few contributions within the article namespace. This however will be of no importance once renames are global.
- Right to vanish cases have been scarse, but there have been cases where it has been applied. It is however not a policy either.
This project has used WP:BN for renaming and I made some settings for it so when you click on "make a new request" you will have this. I recommend you to do some test requests. but main problem for me was alphabet, Persian language has a different alphabet but many of users use English alphabet for user name (like me) and when I want to usurp someone's username. I see what is the language the username is. If the username is Persian like "تست" I change it to "تست (تصاحب شده)" but when it's English I do "Test" to "Test (usurped)"
The other thing I noticed and I think you should check is There is some complexity in this language the one I really worried about similar usernames for example "حمید" and "حميد" looks same but they are different in character and someone used this feature (or bug) two years ago for desysopping one of fa.wp's admins. So BEWARE WHO IS REQUESTING If you want I can explain moreAmir (talk) 10:15, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Fiwiki renames are done at a) fi:Wikipedia:Käyttäjätunnuksen vaihto if the target username does not exist, and b) fi:Wikipedia:Käyttäjänimen haltuunotto if the target username is already in use. In the first case (a) we grant a request if the available username does not conflict with our username policy. In the latter case (b) the official usurpation policy of the Finnish Wikipedia says:
- ”An account can be usurped if any of the following requirements is met:
- The account has fewer than five edits that have been made over one year ago. Then either a bureaucrat or an administrator will place a note on the user's talk page and the usurpation will proceed if there is no response in two weeks or the user specifically agrees to the usurpation.
- The account has no good-faith edits. Usurpation of an account with edits made in good faith can only be done with an explicit permission from the account holder.
- The account has been created solely for the purposes of impersonation or its edits are pure vandalism. Such accounts can be usurped immediately.
- Only registered users can make usurpation requests. One-way usurpation is never done. If you do not have an account on the Finnish Wikipedia, you will have to sign up first.”
In addition to the note on the user’s talk page we also email him/her that someone has requested usurpation of his/her username if he/she has set up and confirmed his/her email. –Ejs-80 06:31, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
I'm comming here because I was asked to, but I don't remember of something particular on this project about renamings. We had this place for renaming requests, but as you can see we really had a few. As a local bureaucrat on frwiktionary, I clearly do not mind at all if there are no more renaming requests to handle. To have it handled by experienced people globally is far better.
Personally, I respect some process while renaming, and I know that these processes are not the same for every project. In my opinion, they should be unified for global renames.
- I always ensure that I'm renaming to a non-reserved account, and if so that the user owning this reserved account agrees with the renaming
- When renaming an account to a user who already exists, I move the existing account to _(usurped). If the user has only a few contributions globally from months ago, I rename ; else I try to contact him by mail or talk page, and rename only if he agrees or doesn't answer.
- When renaming an usurped account, I move pages but do not create redirects. I then delete all these useless moved pages.
- When renaming other accounts, I move pages creating redirects. Then, I delete the redirects of JS/CSS pages who are most of the time useless.
- I know that on some projects, renamed accounts are re-created and blocked, to ensure that a user with the same name won't be created again and make some confusion. I don't know if it's a good idea or not, but this should be taken into consideration.
- Salut Quentin, pourrais-tu traduire cela en français sur ma pdd de Wiktionnaire pour que je sois assuré que je comprends bien ce que tu dis sans risque d'équivoque, stp ? Tu parles ici en tant qu'individu et non collectivement au nom des bureaucrates de WT, c'est pour ça que que je voudrais bien comprendre ce que tu dis. --Béotien lambda (talk) 09:14, 8 May 2013 (UTC)
Nothing special : we rename when asked, except to usernames disapproved by our local policy (random numbers, confusing names, celebrities, obscenities, expressing political views or otherwise aggressive...). When there's a conflict (which is extremely rare), if the one asking is an active user and the user whose name is wanted for usurpation has been inactive for a long time AND without significant edits, we do it (with a lot of room for interpretation of "significant edit" or "a long time"). Requests are usually handled within a few hours at most. No specific problem come to my mind. There has been a few cases of renamings which left a number of contributions on the old account (but it didn't happen lately), and sometimes a local account gets disconnected from the global account, even if created automatically on first login, but I understood these where known bugs on their way to a resolution. Esprit Fugace (talk) 09:06, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Requests are done here on Bureaucrats' talk pages (yes we are primitive) or at the community discussion page, usually the former. We rename any existing user with no or few edits and long inactive to something like "Username1," and rename the requestor according to his/her request. We've have no problems with this. Nahum (talk) 02:10, 4 May 2013 (UTC) , Bureaucrat oh he.wikisource.
The Irish language Wikipedia has three bureaucrats, two of whom are active. Renames are done through Vicipéid:Athainmniú cuntas, and are handled similar to the English Wikipedia - Alison ❤ 20:06, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
We have policy about user names hr:Wikipedija:Suradničko_ime. Basically, if name is:
- not abusive or offensive
- not name of company/institution
- legible (not containing sequence of more then 3 or 4 numbers or just special chars - I'm writing from my head, exact data is in filter of forbidden names) and
- not ethnic denomination name is ok whichever/whatever it is.
Renames and usurpations are requested on either the local village pump or an bureaucrat talk page. There is no dedicated page for rename or usurpation requests. Usernames are changed in accordance to our username policy.
Our username policy is the following: The Icelandic wikipedia does not allow usernames that are confusing, misleading, offensive, used for advertising or are that alike to an username of an known editor that it may cause confusion.
- Confusing usernames that make it difficult to tell users apart
- Misleading usernames give misleading information about users.
- Banned usernames of known vandals
- Advertising usernames that are promotional for companies or institutions.
- Offensive usernames that do other users harm
- Users are asked first to check whether they have edits in the main namespace. If they have none, they are told to simply stop using that name and register the new one. If, nonetheless, they do ask for renaming, we usually proceed only if they do have some edits in any namespace. There is no point in renaming a username with no contributions whatsoever.
- Users are then asked to check the local user list to make sure their new name is not taken - at least locally. If the name is already registered, they are invited to choose a new one. We do not ask users to check all global accounts - we burocrats will find out eventually if the name is reserved for SUL, and inform the user about it. We also do not immediately suggest usurpation if the desired username is already registered (more on the subject later).
- If both conditions are met - some edits and available username - users can submit their renaming request using a template. Users only need to input the old username and the new username. The request is entered complete with links to the various logs and actions that burocrats have to check or do when processing the request - check into contributions and blocks, rename, recreate the old username and block it, and send an email to inform the user when the name change is done.
- A request can be rejected for a number of reasons. I am making a list from memory, so it's not exhaustive:
- Third-party request - either by an IP, or a user different from the old username in the request
- Inappropriate new username
- No contributions at all in any namespace
- User presently involved in controversies or previously blocked, who might try to get a clean sheet under a new name
- New username already taken either locally or globally
- All rejected requests are archived at it:Wikipedia:Cambiare il nome utente/Archivio.
- Usually, when renaming a user, we keep redirects from the old userpages to the new ones and also protect the old user page and its talk page, so that no one can tamper with these two redirects. Sometimes users explicitly ask not to have redirects from the old account - we evaluate such requests on a case-by-case basis.
- Before SUL, we used to recreate the old username and block it, so no one could use it again. It was meant to prevent confusion between two different users with the same name at different times. After SUL, quite often it is not possible to recreate the old username locally, because it is reserved for SUL. In this case, there is also no way to block the old username. In most cases, this is no problem, but I do remember one case of a userA (not the actual username, I don't remember that) renamed to userB, who later resumed contributing also as userA through a SUL account - a case of multiple accounts, that are not always welcome.
- Also after SUL, we often get the message that renaming the local user will detach it from the global account. I usually check into the user's global contributions, and if they are in it.wikipedia only, I go on with the rename, otherwise I inform the user and ask confirmation to go on.
And now we come to usurpation, that is only mentioned after all the renaming instructions. Usurpation guideline is it:Wikipedia:Cambiare il nome utente/Riassegnazione with instructions in Italian and English. No specific help page is available. After SUL, we had to create two different types of request, both managed via a template as is the case with the rename request:
- old-style usurpation with a double rename - first moving the usurped username to username_(riassegnato), then moving the usurper account to username
- making the local username available for the SUL account, by renaming it to default username_(riassegnato) with no further action
Type-1 requests are accepted only if the usurped user has no contributions at all, and may be rejected more or less for the same reasons as rename requests, e.g. third-party request, usurper with no contributions in the main namespace, etc.
Type-2 requests are accepted even if they come from unlogged users, who must however provide a confirmation edit in their main project. Also, for this type of request we have to make exceptions to the old rule that the usurped user must have no contributions at all. Such exceptions are evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
For both types of request, the usurper is required to inform the usurped username on its userpage by using a specific template. If the usurped username has chosen to receive emails, a default message is sent by a burocrat (full text on the guideline page, in Italian). We wait at least 7 days before performing the usurpation, so that the usurped user is allowed some time to react.
All usurpation requests, both rejected and fulfilled, are archived at it:Wikipedia:Cambiare il nome utente/Riassegnazione/Archivio.
We have two bureaucrats, only one of whom is currently active. We usually grant any renaming request, provided, of course, it is not obscene, offensive, or commercial. Steinbach (formerly Caesarion) 08:51, 4 June 2013 (UTC)
Most renames are due to SUL. Owner of global account will always get the username. If there's conflict, notification must be given at least a week before renaming. I usually take my time though, even for non-problematic cases, just in case. ...Aurora... (talk) 10:46, 4 May 2013 (UTC)
Renames are usually unproblematic and is done through WP:HA. A renaming cannot be done when the name is claimed by a SUL and the requester is not the SUL-holder. Furthermore we have a local policy of "unwanted usernames", which does for instance not allow meaningless strings as username, and also no names of companies, trademarks or organisations. A user who does hardly have any edits is usually not renamed, but encouraged to simply subscribe under a new name.
Usurpation of an account is requested through the same page WP:HA as well. An account with only a few edits of long ago can be usurped (when it concerns a SUL-account a confirmation link is requested), when indeed it is inactive. The current account-holder is asked if he or she has objection to be renamed, and if he or she does not react within two weeks or raises no objection, the renaming is done. Lymantria (talk) 07:32, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
There are two types of renames, usurpations and ordinary requests. The former is done fast if the request is for an account with no recent edits, otherwise there is a one month wait after notifying the account. We don't rename when there is a protest. I will honor an ordinary request if the name is a suitable one, and there are no global naming conflict. Haros (talk) 15:48, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
The Polish Wikipedia does not allow marketing names (including company names), and a lot of renames are a result of this. Occasionally there are privacy requests (users who registered under their full name and want to have it changed). We do our fair share of usurpations as well (we have pretty tight requirements for which account can be taken over at all). Requests are typically handled daily, 3 of a total of 6 active bureaucrats address most requests. Pundit (talk) 08:17, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
In ru.wiki we do renames in two cases: usurpation (rules in English are described here - ru:Википедия:УЗУ#English) and user requests for rename (ru:Википедия:Запросы на переименование учётных записей). Principles for usurpation are fully covered by local policy (see link above) and renames are done when user has something more than 10-20 edits and has registered for 6-12 months before. If it's a new account, we recommend to create new account with the desired name. We don't accept names that are companies' names, are similar to existing users, are abusive. rubin16 (talk) 05:40, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
In vi.wiki we rename for usurpations and user requests. For usurpation, we require that the local account be inactive and having 0 edit; we rename the local account by appending _vi to the end of the username. For user-requested renames, we usually grant the request as long as it complies with the username policy (company names are rejected). DHN (talk) 22:11, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
- Update: we don't allow rename for usurpations requests. All these kind of request should be done on Meta by stewards. --minhhuy (talk) 02:57, 5 December 2018 (UTC)
I am the only bureaucrat at vls. No special policy has been enforced; we will readily change your name if you want to (on roughly the same conditions as described above with li:). I don't check this account everyday; you might want to post your request on my li-wiki talk page instead. Steinbach (formerly Caesarion) 08:51, 4 June 2013 (UTC)
- When new name is not taken, we usually just grant the rename as long as it comply with username policy. I have not come across cases when user want to change the name to a company name, but if so I am likely to reject it. If the new name exists elsewhere, I generally encourage users to pick another one. Multiple renames are ok, as long as it's not too frequent (otherwise I'll ask them to make up their mind before requesting).
- We don't have a RTV policy, but it has been granted once or twice on an ad-hoc basis.
- For usurpation, if the target account belongs to someone else, the target user will be notified via talk page and email (if available) and has 7 days to respond. Accounts must have 1) no edits in 2 years, and 2) very few contributions since registration. Accounts that has made (excluding non-constructive edits) more than 50 edits or 3kb of changes are not eligible for usurpation.