The goal of FANDOM is to support large communities who want to work together, and small groups who want to share their passions with the world.
FANDOM welcomes communities (known as “wikis”) on almost any topic, large or small, popular or obscure, modern or historical, creative or documentary, funny or serious. However, your community must contain no hate, no libel, no pornographic content, and no copyright infringement.
You must agree:
- that the content of the community will be freely licensed
Text on FANDOM communities is available under a free content license, meaning the information you put on the wiki can be copied and reused by anyone. This is very important to our goal of increasing the amount of free content in the world, but isn’t always what creators are looking for when searching for a content host.
Although some fair use material may be included in our communities, FANDOM aims to be a repository of free content, so any wiki which would be primarily made up of fair use material rather than freely licensed material is not permitted. Examples include fan translations of copyrighted works, screenshots of television shows or games, or scans of comic book pages.
All FANDOM communities are publicly viewable. FANDOM does not provide private communities and there is no option in the software to password-protect or otherwise prevent people from reading any of the pages on a community.
FANDOM communities are indexed by search engines, and contributions may appear prominently in certain search results.
Communities are about working together, and all FANDOM communities are open to the public to edit. There is no option to restrict editing to the founder or to a particular group.
Unnecessary page protection is a common mistake that is considered harmful to a wiki’s development. A clear statement of the community’s goals is a better way to promote your vision than technical restrictions.
These are community projects, not personal websites. They are not owned by their founders, nor does the founder’s opinion carry more weight in disagreements than any other user’s opinion. Consensus and cooperation should be the primary means for organizing a community.
Communities which consist only of offensive material or personal attacks will be closed.
A user who is banned on other communities or who abuses the wiki creation tool may be blocked from creating new communities.
Users may not create communities with offensive or abusive titles or URLs. We have simple filtering in place to discourage the most obvious undesirable names, but we know it is not possible to block every possible abuse. Users who circumvent the filters in order to create communities in bad faith will simply have their wiki deleted and their user account banned.
Please contact staff to report any abusive community names that we have missed, or if the filter mistakenly prevents you from using an innocent name.
What is acceptable will vary depending on the type of community, but if problem content is not dealt with in good faith by the project’s community, FANDOM staff may remove or alter pages (or entire communities) that are deemed libelous, offensive, or distressing.
Communities are about working together. We allow multiple communities on the same topic, but we strongly encourage you to find and join an existing wiki, instead of trying to create a new project about an existing topic. For many interests, we may already have an active community that needs your help or a dormant project that you can adopt and bring to life.
In the wider web, communities about the same topic tend to merge sooner or later, or the less popular project(s) are abandoned as editors move to the more complete website. It is much easier to incorporate good ideas into an existing community than to try to merge content or create “sister project” structures later.
Advantages of working together:
- There is a better chance of reaching the number of active contributors needed to sustain a community over time
- New ideas can use already-developed infrastructure of established communities, such as templates, infoboxes, and help pages
- New ideas can enliven or provide new direction to a faltering community if presented with kindness and tact
Disadvantages of creating a duplicate community:
- Covering the same ground in the same way as other communities makes it more difficult to attract readers and contributors
- Re-creating work that has already been improved by many collaborators can be tiring and unnecessary
- If you don’t rewrite topics in your own words, you may be tempted to copy from other freely licensed communities. If you do, you must remember:
- Copying the hard work of a dedicated community may cause hard feelings, damaging the reputation of your community and making it more difficult to attract contributors
- You may not copy content from other communities, or from Wikipedia, without providing proper credit and a link back to the source
- Duplicating the exact text of another website severely penalizes the search engine results for the more recent community
If you really want a separate community on an existing topic, please use your creativity to present the information in a different way — you could be serious where others are silly (or vice versa), be opinionated where others are neutral, focus on fan activity or trivia rather than encyclopedic information, or anything else that will set you apart from existing projects.
A community which only copies content from other communities may be closed if it fails to provide credit or begin editing the text to make the project different and distinct.
Closing, merging, and altering communities
While a community’s founder may request that their project be closed, if the topic is of general public interest FANDOM generally prefers to leave dormant communities available for adoption.
Wikis which have no content, or remain inactive, or have a large overlap with another wiki may be merged with another project or closed completely. In the case of a complete closure of wikis that previously had content, the database of content may be made available for download for up to 30 days.