All The Tropes:How to Get a Rule Changed

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Unless it is a matter of legal requirement[1] or directly affects the safety and future of the wiki, the wiki administration will always respect the will of the users when it comes to the rules and policies affecting All The Tropes. We are not TV Tropes. We do not rule "top-down", imposing our wills on the poor hapless tropers whom we've trapped in our website. We are a community that decides as a whole what we do and don't want our rules and policies to be. The admin staff may lead in this regard, proposing and/or imposing rules and policies on their initiative and on a per-case basis, but no rule or policy is absolute — almost anything can be challenged and potentially changed.

So if you've run headlong into a rule or policy and you think there's something wrong about it, here's how you go about changing it:

  1. Go to the forums and propose the change in a new topic. Identify the specific rule or policy you think should be changed. Explain what you think it should be changed to, even if that's to eliminate it entirely, and explain why you think it should be changed. Don't forget to ping the All The Tropes Moderation Staff.
  2. With luck, debate on your suggestion should manifest. If it doesn't, it's okay to go to users' talk pages and ask them to weigh in.
  3. Eventually a consensus will form. If that consensus supports your proposed change, the moderation staff will make the change to the rules.

Some hints for the potential rule-changer:

  • It helps immensely if you are an established editor with a history on the site. While we won't dismiss a newbie out of hand, having "street cred" will get more (and more serious) attention paid to your suggestion.
  • Be polite (or at least calm), even if — especially if — the discussion isn't going your way. Getting snarky or insulting because you're not finding the support you want is not going to win you points with anyone.

For an example how not to try to get a policy changed, see this thread on the talk page for Magnificent Bastard.


  1. We're never going to stop requiring licenses for uploaded images, for example.