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Doctor Who Answers:Policies

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Shortcut: DWA:POLICIES

Welcome to the policies page for the Doctor Who Answers Wiki!

This is where we outline all the rules relevant to this site, as well as the general way we do things here. Please read through this page carefully, as questions violating these policies will be deleted and answers violating these policies will be deleted too. Repeatedly failing to follow some of our policies can also result in us blocking you from editing, which is something we don’t want to do unless we have to.

Note: We are not the BBC, nor have any connections to any of the people who make the program.

If you find a question that doesn't abide by our policies, please tag it for deletion (more info on how to do that here) and if you find a user who repeatedly breaks the rules, please report them to one of the site’s admins.

If you have a situation which needs to be dealt with by an admin of this wiki, but not any specific admin, please leave a message at DWA:CONTACT. Otherwise, contact the needed admin on their talk page.

The admin team is (as of June 2015):

Active
Inactive

If You Find A Problem With The Policies

Before we begin, if you ever find a problem with a current policy, or if you have found a problem which our policies don't address, please check out Forum:Discussion list regarding site's policies to see a list of conversations showing how we came to a certain policy decision in case we have taken your problem into account previously and, if there is nothing there about your problem, feel free to start a new thread at the Policies and site running board outlining your ideas, along with a descriptive title.

General Editing

We Are Not The BBC

Shortcut: DWA:NOTBBC

We are not the BBC or any of the other licensed rights holders, and we do not have contact with anybody involved in the making of the show or its spinoffs in any media. We are just fans who enjoy the stories like you do. Any questions asking to make contact with somebody relating to the show or its spinoffs will therefore be deleted, wherever they might occur on the site.

In plainer language, please do not ask about things like:

  • how to make contact with somebody relating to the show or its spinoffs
  • how to audition for the show or its spinoffs
  • how to receive technical training that would be appropriate to a behind-the-scenes career at BBC Wales
  • how to submit a script to Big Finish
  • how to send your comics portfolio to Doctor Who Magazines
  • when your favourite actor might return to the Big Finish monthly range
  • what future episodes a director has been assigned to

etc.

English Only

Shortcut: DWA:ENGONLY

We’re sorry to our international editors, but for maintenance reasons we have decided to make this wiki English only. As this wiki is run in English (as you can see by our policies page being written in English as well as all the navigation buttons up the top of the page), we tend to draw in mostly English speaking editors, meaning there is no guarantee that there will be another editor who speaks your language who can answer your questions properly, making this wiki less than useless to you. If you find a similar Q and A site in a different language, tell us on the talk page of this article so we can let others who speak that language find it. Alternatively, if you would like to make a wiki such as this one in another language with interwiki links, feel free to contact an admin about how to do that. Also since not all of us can read languages other than English, especially the admins, we cannot make sure that what you are saying is abiding by our policies. We also can’t make sure that you are not a vandal writing something in gibberish to spam the wiki. For these reasons, we will be deleting every question that is not in English. If you repeatedly post questions in a foreign language, you may be banned from editing this wiki for a time length of the blocker’s choice. We are sorry for the inconvenience to our foreign editors, but we have decided that this is the best solution for both you and the wiki.

Also, since Doctor Who and most of its spin offs are British, we prefer British English over the other kinds. There is nothing wrong with writing a question or answer in American English or any other form if you don't know how to use British English, however if you do know British English and see a question that uses a different sort of English, please rephrase the question to the British equivalent.

Must Be Understandable

Shortcut: DWA:CLEAR

Not only must your questions be in English, they must also be understandable for readers. This means that if your spelling/grammar is so bad the question can’t be understood, we will have to delete it (sorry). Questions that can't be understood can't reasonably be answered, and will have to be deleted. Now, as we understand that we have international editors whose first language is not English, the writing does not have to be perfect; it just needs to be clear enough for your point to come across. However, it is best that you read over your work before hitting publish to be sure that there are no errors or typos which may make your writing incomprehensible to others. Also, if you see any writing which is badly spelled or has bad grammar but is still vaguely understandable, please edit the writing to fix it. This includes questions, which can be rephrased if there are any problems such as spelling or clarity. Please rephrase your question if you make a mistake instead of creating a new one.

Speculation/Opinions/Personal Views

The main Q and A part of this site is based on facts and facts only. Do not include speculation or opinion in your questions or answers in the main namespace (the Q and A part of this wiki), and do not try and push your point of view in answers. These kinds of things are allowed in the forums however, as the forums are designed for conversations on these topics. Also, do not ask and answer questions in the main namespace in an attempt to make your view on a subject more visible. Self-answered questions will be deleted.

Stories Covered By This Site

Shortcut: DWA:NOCAN

This site covers the science fiction TV show Doctor Who and its licensed spin-offs in various media, including Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures, the audio plays, the novels, the comics, etc.

The BBC, which owns the rights to Doctor Who, has never issued an authoritative list of stories that are officially accepted as part of Doctor Who (sometimes known as a canon). In the absence of such a list, it is a matter of opinion whether any story or set of stories should be accepted. Questions relating to this cannot be answered & will be deleted. The section on Speculation/Opinions/Personal Views applies to this subject -- basically, keep it out of the main namespace (the Q and A part of this wiki). Repeatedly breaking this policy may get you banned for a long time.

Capitalisation

Shortcut: DWA:CAP

Please capitalise all names of species and people, so write “Dalek” instead of “dalek” and “Amy Pond” instead of “amy pond”. For people who use titles instead of names such as the Doctor, the Master and the Brigadier, capitalise the title but not the “the” unless it begins a sentence. If you see someone hasn't capitalised properly on an article, please edit that article to fix this. Stylistic consistency makes a wiki look so much better.

Referencing And Referring To Stories

Shortcut: DWA:REF

If you are going to write a story’s name (whether it be a TV episode, a novel, an audio play, a comic story etc.) for either citation reasons or if you are just referencing it, please put the name of the story in the proper referencing templates, for example {{TV|Rose}} and capitalise the name properly, which will produce something that looks like this: "Rose", as well as categorising the page. If you see that someone hasn't, please go edit the page to fix this. If there is no referencing template for that particular set of stories, or if the template has already been used once on that page to link to the story in question, just enclose the name in "inverted commas". For more information on correctly referencing, see Help:Referencing.

Preferably Wiki Links

Shortcut: DWA:LINK

Although not essential, it is better when linking to different pages on a wiki to use wiki links instead of HTML ones. What do I mean by that? Well, a HTML link is the one in your URL bar which usually starts with http:// while a wiki link looks like this: [[Doctor Who Answers]] while editing and this: Doctor Who Answers once the page has been published. Although when linking to an article that is not on a wiki you will have to use a HTML link, if you are linking to another page on this wiki or another wiki (such as our sister wiki Tardis Data Core), it is preferred that you make a wiki link. For more information on how to make a wiki link, see here. If you see that someone has added an HTML link to a wiki article, please edit the page to a wiki link. Thanks!

Signatures

Shortcut: DWA:SIG

Please sign all contributions that you make with four tildes (~) UNLESS YOU ARE IN THE MAIN Q AND A PART OF THE SITE or in the forums. Please do not sign your contributions on questions or answers as these pages are meant to be more like an article that can be edited by anyone rather than a discussion. Signing your posts in the forums is pointless as your post will effectively be "signed" for you when you publish your message. However, please sign all posts on talk pages. Signing your posts with ~~~~ will leave a signature which looks something like this: Your username or IP (talk) 20:58, March 24, 2017 (UTC)

Asking Questions

Must Be Related To Doctor Who Or Its Spin-offs

Shortcut: DWA:DWU

We will only accept questions that are directly related to the science fiction TV show Doctor Who and its licensed spin-offs in various media, including Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures, the audio plays, the novels, the comics, etc. Questions not relating to the Doctor Who Universe or the production of Doctor Who and its related spin-offs will be deleted. Repeatedly breaking this policy may get you banned for a long time.

Questions concerning unlicensed works, such as fan fiction, cannot be answered and will be deleted.

Where questions are about people who have worked on Doctor Who and/or its spin-offs, we only allow questions which directly relate to these productions. For example, “Why did Tom Baker decide to leave Doctor Who?” is a valid question. In contrast, “What other TV shows has Tom Baker been in?” is not something we allow, nor is “What is Tom Baker’s shoe size?”.

Doctor Who Is Fictional

The Doctor is a fictional character, sonic screwdrivers aren't real (yet), and the TARDIS is the product of the imagination of numerous writers and set designers. Questions pertaining to things like "How do I build a TARDIS?" or "How do I become a Time Lord?" cannot be answered in any factual manner. On the other hand, a question like "How does the Doctor get the junkyard TARDIS to work in The Doctor's Wife?" is acceptable as the episode provides this information (he doesn't, but Idris/TARDIS provides energy to start it). A question like "How did X become a Time Lord?" is also acceptable, even if the series doesn't necessarily provide an answer.

On a similar note, none of the fictional languages in Doctor Who have ever been fully developed officially, unlike, for example, Star Trek's Klingon. This means that we cannot answer any questions asking for translations into these fictional languages such as Gallifreyan, Judoon, Draconian, etc. As for translations into a language shared with the real world, we cannot do that either as that would almost definitely fall foul of DWA:DWU. Try Google Translate instead. It is alright, however, to ask for translations for words spoken in the show in another language into English, such as the Tenth Doctor's catch phrase "Allons-y" (which is French for "Let's go"), as we do have the information needed to bridge these fictional concepts into the real world.

Must Be Phrased As A Question

Shortcut: DWA:NOTQ

When asking a question, make sure it's phrased as a question. If it isn't phrased as a question, then we don't know what you are asking. For example, "Female companions of the Doctor" is not a question and therefore it is unclear what the asker wants to know. Do they want to know who have been female companions of the Doctor? How many female companions of the Doctor there are? Which Doctors have had female companions? Because of the ambiguity of questions which aren't questions, any non-questions that are found will be deleted.

Also, many questions-that-aren't seem to be typed as though they were keywords in a search, rather than an attempt at asking a question. Just to be clear, the big white bar with the "Ask" button beside it is for asking new questions, and will do exactly that. The smaller white bar in the heading of each page is for searching existing questions. For more information on searching existing questions on Doctor Who Answers, see Help:Searching Questions.

Duplicate Questions

Before asking a question, please use the search box (the small white one which says “Search Answered Questions” at the top right of the screen, not the big white one at the top left) to search our database and to see if your question has already been asked. You can find more information on searching at Help:Searching Questions. Duplicate questions will be deleted.

If you have written a question and then realise it needs to be redone because something was misspelled or any other reason, please rephrase the question instead of asking it again. This can be done by hitting the "Rephrase" button that should appear beside or under any unanswered question, or by hitting the arrow beside the "Edit" button and then clicking "Rephrase" if the question has already had a response. For more detail on how to rephrase questions, see Help:Rephrase.

If you see a duplicate question that needs deleting, it would be helpful to include the name of the other question when you tag the question for deletion so the question with the least information can be the one that's deleted, and it also ensures that you haven't just stumbled your way to the same question twice.

We Can’t See The Future

Shortcut: DWA:FUTURE

We have no way of knowing what is going to happen in the future of the program and so we cannot accept questions about unreleased stories, such as “Who will be the next Doctor?” or “Will Susan return in the upcoming series?”. This includes questions about officially released information, as official sources (such as Steven Moffat) sometimes lie to avoid spoiling a story. We also can't answer questions based on rumours and/or spoilers. All such questions will be deleted, even if the future episode they were asking about has since been released, and repeat offenders may be blocked.

Vague/Can Change Meaning Over Time

If your question is too vague to be answered, it will have to be deleted. The same goes for a question worded in such a way that the meaning of the question will change over time. Avoid words such as “current”, as in “current Doctor” or “current companion”, “next”, such as “next season” or “next companion”, and "previous", as in "previous episode" or "previous sonic screwdriver", as these words will have different meanings depending on when a person is reading the question. Instead, use words such as “The 1st Doctor”, “Amy Pond” and “Series 8” to clarify your point. Also, avoid the word "last", as last could refer to the previous object or the final object.

If you are asking about something that happens in a particular story, please name that story in your question. "How did Rory die?" will be deleted as being too vague to answer, because he died or seemed to die in several stories. "How did Rory die in "Cold Blood"?" can be answered, because it clearly refers to one specific event. Even if the event you're asking about has happened only once, naming the story will help to direct attention to it & may get you your answer sooner.

One Question At A Time

Shortcut: DWA:ONEQ

Please only ask one question at a time. If you would like to ask multiple questions, please ask them separately. The only exception is in the case of “if so” questions, such as “Is Nyssa an alien, and if so, which planet is she from?”. If there are multiple questions in a question (that are not part of the exception above), the question will be deleted, and it will be up to you to re-ask the questions separately if you still want them answered.

No Question Requiring Guesswork

Shortcut: DWA:GUESS

Simply put, if we can't give a definite, non-speculative answer to a question, we cannot answer it and therefore it must be deleted. This includes questions which would require us to read the minds of characters such as "Why didn't Rory do x?" or "Why didn't Sarah Jane kick y?"

Answering Questions

Only Answer If You Know The Answer

Basically, if you don’t know the answer to a question, don’t answer it. However, if the answer is that the information hasn’t been revealed yet, you should say so. Those caught consistently answering a question improperly or in an unhelpful way will be blocked for vandalism. You can’t give a proper answer if you don’t know the answer.

In-Universe Question=In-Universe Answer

Shortcut: DWA:IN-UNI

If a question is asking for an in-universe answer, don’t give the out-of-universe answer. For example, if one asked “Why is the Doctor called the Doctor?”, reply with something along the lines of “Because he chose to be called that as he likes to try and make people better” instead of something along the lines of “Because the writers at the time wanted it to be his name”.

For some questions where there is both an in-universe and out-of-universe answer, it can be beneficial to put both answers, stating which one's in-universe and which one's out-of-universe. For example, if someone asks "Who created the Daleks?", the answer can be in-universe (that they were created by Davros) or out-of-universe (they were created by script writer Terry Nation). However, there must at least be one in-universe answer to any in-universe question.

No Conversations In An Answer Space

Shortcut: DWA:NOCONVO

The answer spaces are meant for answers to questions, not debates over whether the things erased during series 5 were restored in "The Big Bang" or if the Master and the War Chief are the same person. Leave such discussions to the forums. Give a definite answer in the answers section or, if the answer is controversial, see the section below. If people still try to converse in the answer space, contact an admin and they can protect the page for you to stop this.

Questions With Controversial Answers

Shortcut: DWA:CONTRO

If a question has multiple answers coming from different sources, or even just confused information from one source, it is best to put down all possibilities as presented in the stories. For information where different media refer to conflicting events having taken place, such as the TV Movie stating the Doctor has a human mother versus the novel "Lungbarrow" stating the Doctor doesn't have parents but was in fact loomed, it is best to present the information from all media along with citations so the readers can decide for themselves what information is "true" to them.

An example of a slightly different kind of controversy is the UNIT dating controversy, where conflicting information comes from different televised episodes of Doctor Who as to when the stories featuring the Third Doctor and UNIT took place, as well as when the Brigadier worked for UNIT (if all TV episodes are taken as true, then the Brig retired before he joined!). In cases such as this, it is best to outline why a question's answer may be controversial and present all information relevant.

For the more famous controversies, a link to the relevant article on the Tardis Data Core can be extremely helpful. On questions where an answer may be controversial, it may be helpful to discuss on the question's talk page (which can be located through the button which says "talk" under the question) how best to present the information.

Note: on questions with controversial answers, ALL viewpoints must be expressed.

Indicating Sources

Shortcut: DWA:SOURCE

Please indicate the source(s) of the information you are giving, unless it's inappropriate to do so. The level of detail that it's useful to give will depend on circumstances. If (say) the question is "Has X ever happened in Doctor Who?" & the answer is "No, never", there would be no point in giving a list of stories; the answer itself tells anyone who reads it that all the stories are full of X not happening. If the answer is "Only once", you should refer to the story in which it happens. In other cases, the answer might be best in the form: "X has never happened in the TV stories but has happened in some novels & audios" &, unless the list would be excessively long, please say which novels & audios.

If the question refers to a story by title & the answer comes from that story, there’s no need to repeat the title in the answer. If the answer comes from some other story, however, please identify it. For example, the answer to "How did the Master take the body of Tremas in "The Keeper of Traken"?" is given in the next story, "Logopolis" (the Doctor did explain later).

Some information is so widely available that it would be pointless to indicate its source. For example, the police box appearance of the outside of the TARDIS is shown or described in so many stories that it would be futile to try to list them all. In this case, it would be more useful & much more practical to refer only to the few occasions when it has some other disguise.

Information may be derived from several series, including The Sarah Jane Adventures, Torchwood & others. Where the answer (or part of it) comes from a spin-off, please say which one.

Because it is a matter of individual opinion which stories should be accepted as part of Doctor Who, an answer needs to contain enough information to enable the individual to decide for him/herself which parts of the answer he/she wishes to accept. Often, it will be enough to say something like: "The TV stories say A. Some novels/audios/comics add B & C but other novels/audios/comics say D, instead." Please don't make the answer unnecessarily complicated but don't make it misleading by trying to simplify it too much, either.

Please do not use information from unlicensed works, such as fan fiction, in your answers.

Different Versions

Where different versions of a story exist or have existed, information may be found in one version but not in others, which makes it especially important to specify which version contains the information.

For a TV story that is, even in part, missing from the BBC's archives, any reconstruction is a separate version from the original broadcast. The broadcast version of "The Invasion" (1968) did not have any reference to "Bad Wolf" but the animated reconstruction of part 1 (DVD, 2006) shows "Bad Wolf" written on a wall. This story also had a different reconstruction released on tape in 1993.

Some TV stories have been released in extended or special editions that include scenes omitted from the original broadcast. These are also separate versions of the stories.

The novelisations of TV stories & of some other productions routinely contain material that was not in the original, because the requirements of the different media are different. The novelisation of the non-broadcast video "Shakedown", for example, covers far more than the video itself, whose events comprise only about a third of the book. In some cases, the novelisation of one story contains material that comes from another story. The novelisation of "The Daleks" (the first ever published) opens with material based on the first episode "An Unearthly Child" but entirely omits the Stone-Age story that was shown between it & "The Daleks". For these reasons, novelisations, too, must be regarded as separate versions of the stories.

If you don't say which version of a story contains the information in your answer, you may mislead other users, even if you have no intention of doing so.

Further Edits

Shortcut: DWA:EDIT

Once an answer to a question has been given, others are still free to add extra information by clicking the button which says edit beside or under the question on the page. However, if you are re-editing an answer, don’t put it in a separate section, or put the word “Edit:” beside it. Instead, add your additional information to whatever is already there, preferably integrating it in with the existing information in paragraph form.

Additional

  • Users with inappropriate usernames will be blocked.
  • Users who ask inappropriate questions or answer questions inappropriately will be blocked. Remember, we cover the children’s show The Sarah Jane Adventures as well as Doctor Who and the more adult Torchwood, so be wary of this when you ask and answer questions. Any questions deemed inappropriate will be deleted.
  • Be civil to your fellow editors and to the people you refer to. Un-civil behaviour may result in blockage. Also please remember that some things such as sarcasm and jokes can be lost in text-only communication, so be careful how you word things so people don't take things the wrong way.
  • Do not post personal information. If personal information is seen, it will be removed without warning.

Making Wiki Links

  • To link to a question on this wiki, simply enclose the name of the question in double square brackets ([[]]). Don't put the question mark on the end. To get Who is the Doctor, for example, type [[Who is the Doctor]].
  • To link to a category on this wiki, type {{c| then the name of the category, then }}. To get The Doctor, type {{c|The Doctor}}, for example.
  • To link to something other than a question or category on this wiki, type two square brackets followed by the namespace (such as blog, forum, thread, board, or help) and a colon (:), then the title of the page and two closing square brackets. To reach Board:Watercooler, type [[Board:Watercooler]].
  • To link to the article about a Doctor Who story on our sister wiki Tardis Data Core, type two normal brackets ({{) followed by the type of story (novel, TV, comic, audio), then a vertical line (|) and the name of the story, ending with two more normal brackets. To get "Rose", type {{TV|Rose}}. Note that this also adds the category for that story to the page it is used on.
  • To link to an in-universe article on TDC, type {{Tardis| followed by the name of the article and two closing normal brackets. To reach The Doctor, type {{Tardis|The Doctor}}.
  • To link to any other kind of page on TDC, type [[Tardis: followed by the namespace, a colon, the name of the page, and two closing square brackets. For example, to reach Tardis:Board:The Celestial Toyroom you would type [[Tardis:Board:The Celestial Toyroom]]
  • To link to another wiki besides this one or TDC, type [[w:c: then the name of the wiki (the part that appears before .wikia.com in the URL) and a colon, and then the name of the namespace and a colon (if the page isn't in the main namespace), then the page name, and two closing square brackets. To reach w:c:starwars:mainpage, you type [[w:c:starwars:mainpage]].
  • To link to a non-wiki page, type [Whatever the URL is] to get this: [1], or just type the bare URL to get http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006q2x0 for example.

Note that there are many ways to link to any page, and that these are just guidelines. These methods overlap. To make the link appear differently from the title of the page it links to, add |Whatever You Want To Call It after the page name. To make w:c:starwars:Darth Vader ([[w:c:starwars:Darth Vader]]) appear simply as Darth Vader, write [[w:c:starwars:Darth Vader|Darth Vader]]. The exception to this rule is links to non-wiki pages. For these, add a space after the URL and write your desired name. For example, to make [2] ([http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006q2x0] appear as BBC, type [http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006q2x0 BBC].

Happy editing everyone!

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