FamilySearch Wiki:Signatures

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Blue check.png This page documents a guideline. It is a generally accepted standard that contributors should attempt to follow, though it is best treated with common sense and the occasional exception.

Any substantive edit to this page should reflect consensus. When in doubt, discuss first on the talk page.

Signing your posts on talk pages, both in the article and non-article namespaces, is a good practice and facilitates discussion, by helping identify the author of a particular comment. Other users can then navigate to a talk page and address their comments to the specific, relevant user(s). Discussion is an important part of collaborative editing, because it helps all users to understand the progress and evolution of a work.

Signature use that is intentionally and persistently disruptive may lead to blocking under the disruptive editing policy.

When editing a page, main namespace articles should not be signed, because the article is a shared work, based on the contributions of many people, and one editor should not be singled out above others.

Wikipedia has more about this subject: Wikipedia:Signatures

Purpose of signatures

Signatures on FamilySearch Wiki identify you as a user, and your contributions to FamilySearch Wiki. They encourage civility in discussions, by identifying the author of a particular comment and the date and time at which it was made. Because of that, having an uncivil signature is strongly discouraged (in some cases, to the point of blocking the user until it is changed). In general, anything that is not allowed in a user name should not be used in a signature either.

When signatures should and should not be used

Any posts made to the user talk pages, article talk pages and any other discussion pages should be signed. Edits to articles should not be signed, as signatures on FamilySearch Wiki are not intended to indicate ownership or authorship of any article. Rather, the page history takes care of the need to identify edits with users. Therefore, signatures should not be used in edit summaries, as they do not translate from ~~~~. In other instances, when posts should not be signed, specific instructions are provided to contributors.

How to sign your posts

Preferred option

Using four tildes

There are two ways to sign your posts:

  1. At the end of your comments simply type four tildes (~), like this: ~~~~.
  2. If you are using the edit toolbar option (it usually appears above the edit screen as a default),[1] click the signature icon: File:Signature icon.png, to add the four tildes.

Your signature will appear after you have saved the changes. The end result is the same in both cases.

Typing four tildes will result in the following:

Wikimarkup Resulting code Resulting display
~~~~ [[User:Example|Example]] ([[User talk:Example|talk]]) 00:30, 27 June 2017 (UTC) Example (talk) 00:30, 27 June 2017 (UTC)

Since typing four tildes adds the time and date to your resulting signature, this is the preferred option for signing your posts in discussions.

Other options

Using three tildes

Typing three tildes results in the following:

Wikimarkup Resulting code Resulting display
~~~ [[User:Example|Example]] ([[User talk:Example|talk]]) Example (talk)

However, since this does not date-stamp your signature, you may only wish to sign this way when leaving general notices on your user page or user talk page. This is also a convenient shortcut (rather than typing out the full code) when you want to provide a link to your user page.

Using five tildes

Typing five tildes will convert to a date stamp with the current date and time, without adding your signature, like this:

Wikimarkup Resulting code Resulting display
~~~~~ 00:30, 27 June 2017 (UTC) 00:30, 27 June 2017 (UTC)

Note that if you choose to contribute to FamilySearch Wiki without logging in, you should still sign your posts. In this case your IP address will take the place of your username. Your IP address might look something like this: Some users prefer to use their IP address instead of a user name because they think that an IP provides them with more anonymity. In fact a pseudonymous account (that is, a registered user name) actually provides you with more protection of your identity, as IP addresses can be easily tracked by anyone. Registered users have their IP addresses hidden from public view.

Also note that signing manually with a pseudonym or tag such as --anon does not give you more anonymity or privacy protection, since your IP address will still be stored in the page history. This also makes it more difficult for other users to communicate with you. If you choose to sign this way you should still type four tildes: --anon ~~~~.
  1. If the browser's settings don't allow JavaScript, the icons appear only if the settings are changed. If the browser is set not to show pictures, the icon can be found on "Your signature with timestamp"