Other languages: ru

Redlinkphobia (or erythrolynchinophobia for demanding latinists, erythrophobia for shortening ones, ἐρυθρολύχνοφόβος for hellenists!) is the irrational fear of red links on a Wiki page.

The prevalence of this fear varies, but it commonly involves not providing links for yet-uncreated articles, particularly on the main page, on which those links might be looked to as "unprofessional", and coming to see these links as "unsightly". This itself has become an example of collective consciousness, with editors attempting to follow a standard procedure; the absence of red links on a Wiki provides the message that these links are unacceptable, thus further invigorating the cycle.

The absence of red links holds the negative effect of deterring the creations of articles; for one thing because the absence of any link suggests to future editors that the topic is not "worthy" of an article; and for another, because new and unexperienced potential editors may not understand the procedure for the creation of new articles, and thus might be pushed away from making a contribution.

It is worth noting, for the benefit of newer Wikipedians, that red links — and the desire to turn them blue — are how Wikipedia was built in the early years.

See also


Advice from other wikis: