Wikipedia:Policies and guidelines

Wikipedia's policies and guidelines are developed by the community to describe best practices, clarify principles, resolve conflicts, and otherwise further our goal of creating a free, reliable encyclopedia. There is no need to read any policy or guideline pages to start editing. The five pillars are a popular summary of the most pertinent principles.

Although Wikipedia generally does not employ hard-and-fast rules, Wikipedia's policy and guideline pages describe its principles and agreed-upon best practices. Policies are standards all users should normally follow, and guidelines are generally meant to be best practices for following those standards in specific contexts. Policies and guidelines should always be applied using reason and common sense.

This policy page specifies the community standards related to the organization, life cycle, maintenance of, and adherence to policies, guidelines, and related pages of the English Wikipedia. It does not cover other editions of Wikipedia. (See Wikipedia:List of policies and Wikipedia:List of guidelines for a comprehensive listing of individual English Wikipedia policies and guidelines.)


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