In rare cases, it may become clear that two wiki editors are incapable of interacting with each other in a civil way. If incidents between the two editors are disrupting the site, and other means of resolving the situation have not worked, extra measures may be necessary.
If two or more administrators agree it is appropriate, then the two editors in question, Editor A and Editor B, are officially prohibited from interacting with each other, in any way, on the wiki. Before applying the restriction, the administrators may also choose to neutralize factors that provoked past incidents, or are otherwise likely to instigate future incidents (for example, remove existing warnings to Editor A or Editor B that are specifically related to past interactions between the two editors). The administrators may also choose to restrict one or both editors from making any edits to certain articles (for example, if Editor A has previously identified a specific project on which he is working, Editor B can be restricted from making any edits to those articles or their talk pages).
After making the decision, a message (not a warning, just a notification) should be placed on the talk page of each editor informing him/her that this restriction is in place.
After the restriction has been enacted, the next time either Editor A or Editor B violates the restriction prohibiting any interaction, the violator gets an official warning. After the warning, any further violations by the same editor will result in the editor being blocked. The editor will continue to be blocked, as many times as necessary. The administrator making a block should determine the appropriate duration based on the circumstances.
As long as the other editor does not respond or do anything to violate the restriction, the other editor will receive no warning and won't be blocked.
The primary purpose of the block is to enforce a time-out/cool-down period, and thus prevent the typical rapidly escalating back-and-forth edits. The warning/block is also critical to make it clear to the other editor that he does not need to take any action in response to the violation. It is important that even minor violations are enforced, to minimize the possibility that the minor violation will trigger a major incident. If community members notice a violation that has not been addressed by an administrator, they should report it on this policy's talk page (a simple link to the questionable edit is sufficient; any type of additional explanation is likely to cause extra problems).
Prohibited actions under the proposed restrictions would include:
- Making comments about the other editor, indirectly or directly, on articles, on discussion pages, or in edit summaries. Substitutes for names (e.g., "you know who") would count as making an indirect comment.
- Making any edit to the other editor's user page, user talk page, or user subpages.
- Undoing any edit made by the other editor.
- If these rules are violated to the point where Editor A gets warned or blocked, then Editor B is also prohibited from making any references to that warning/block, to prevent any type of comment that might be interpreted as gloating or might otherwise exacerbate future arguments.
- Editor A and Editor B must do everything possible to avoid derailing other community discussions with their conflicts. So if, for example, Editor B has already contributed to a discussion, Editor A needs to (a) think carefully about whether any contribution is appropriate (e.g., is the information new and important to the discussion) (b) wait long enough (e.g., 24 hours or more) before responding so that it's clear to everyone the comments are not being made hastily or emotionally (c) make absolutely sure that the comments are on topic and do not violate any of the above prohibitions.
- Editor A can edit an article previously edited by the Editor B, but only if at least 24 hours has passed -- and even then, cannot simply undo Editor A's edits. This condition is to ensure that the restrictions don't effectively make every article on the site off-limits for editing if one (or both editors) have contributed widely to the site.