Help:Redirect

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Redirecting is a method of guiding a reader to the correct page. A reader might be thinking of a synonym of the name of the article and go searching for it with the wrong word. This can happen to a wiki editor as well, and they might add a link under that synonym instead of the actual title. To avoid confusion in these cases, it is possible to create a redirect, which guides the reader to the article they were looking for. Anyone can create redirects when they feel there’s a reason for it.

Using redirects

What is a redirect?

Let’s say you want to learn more about Andor, the homeworld of Andorians. You type that in the search bar and hit enter. However, unknown to you at the time, the proper name of the moon on which Andorians live is actually Andoria. It is sometimes called Andor, which is why you happened to remember that name instead of Andoria. As you search for the article under the wrong (or less common) name, you still find the correct page, Andoria. That is because the page “Andor” is a redirect.

Instead of searching for Andor, let’s say you were writing about your character’s holiday there. If you don’t look up the name of the article, you might not remember that it’s actually “Andoria”, and add a link to “Andor” by mistake. However, since “Andor” is a redirect, any reader who clicks the link you added finds the correct page anyway.

When to use redirects

There is no comprehensive list for when to use redirects. They can be used almost whenever you think one is needed. Here are some common reason’s for why to create a new redirect.

  • Another or synonymous name for the same thing, such as Terra for Earth or Combadge for Communicator.
  • When a topic is covered in another, related article and an article for the subject doesn’t exist, such as Deluvia IV for Deluvia system. This might change, if an article is later created for the subject.
  • Common misspelling or untypical character, such as Ashli Sydin for Ashlı Sydin (note ı instead of i).
    • Some names that contain an apostrophe (’) have a redirect where it is replaced with a typewriter apostrophe ('), because most people have the latter but not the former on their keyboards. This can also happen vice versa, if the actual article name is written with a typewriter apostrophe. For example, Quark’s Bar for Quark's Bar.
  • Abbreviations, such as HCO for Helm/Com/Ops (Duty Post).
  • Singulars/plurals or other grammatical differences, for example Bajorans for Bajoran.
  • Alternate capitalization, for example Commemorative coin for Commemorative Coin. Note that the first letter in the page’s name is always upper case due to technical limitations.
  • Former names, nicknames, full names or pseudonyms, such as Conny for USS Constitution-B or Genkos Sim for Genkos Adea (who has changed his name).
    • Some characters go by their nicknames or other names, in which case the official name might not be the primary name. The official name might be a redirect, however. For example, Kalianna Nicholotti for Kali Nicholotti.
    • The 118Wiki standard used to be writing characters’ names last name first, separated from the first name by a comma. As such, many characters currently have a redirect from such a name to their current character articles. For example, Wolf, Tristan for Tristan Wolf.
  • Many users choose to make their Writer ID a redirect to their wiki user pages, for example E239911J11 for User:Jovenan.

When not to use redirects

Just like there is no clear-cut list of reasons when to use a redirect, one for when not to use them doesn’t exist either. In general, you should avoid creating a redirect in cases such as the following.

  • There are multiple different pages the redirect could point at. For example, you shouldn’t create a redirect from Sickbay to your ship’s sickbay, like USS Artemis-A/Sickbay, because it could refer to a number of sickbays in different ships. Use a disambiguation instead. Learn more about disambiguations at 118Wiki:Disambiguation.
  • When redirect has little to no relation to the article or is misleading.

Creating and managing redirects

What redirect looks like?

In search results or as a link, a redirect looks similar to any other page. However, when you click on a link that is a redirect, you won’t typically stop at the redirect page but will be moved to the actual page instead. When that happens, you’ll see small text below the main title telling that you were redirected to this article. For example, if you click on link Terra, you will find text (Redirected from Terra) under the title “Earth”.

It is still possible to visit a redirect page. When you get redirected to a page, click on the redirect page name in that small text. You’ll find a mostly empty page with a bendy arrow symbol and the target page (in case of Terra, “Earth”) link in larger font.

A redirect page, when it redirects to the target page, has a typical URL, such as https://wiki.starbase118.net/wiki/index.php?title=Terra, which isn’t any different from any article, such as https://wiki.starbase118.net/wiki/index.php?title=Earth. However, if you wish to visit the redirect page without being redirected, you’ll need to add &redirect=no to the end of the URL, e.g. https://wiki.starbase118.net/wiki/index.php?title=Terra&redirect=no.

A redirect page can be edited, moved and otherwise changed in the non-redirecting URL.

Creating a new redirect page

A redirect page can be created in the similar way as any other page. See Help:Creating a new page for instructions. However, when creating a redirect, you’ll need to add the redirecting instruction to the page.

On source editor, add a line with text #REDIRECT[[target page]]. Replace “target page” with the name of the actual article. For example, if you’re creating a redirect from Sol 3 to Earth, that line would be #REDIRECT[[Earth]]. You can also use the button on the default toolbar.
On Visual editor, follow these instructions:
  1. Open the desired redirect page in Visual editor, such as Sol 3
  2. Open the hamburger menu (three horizontal lines, ☰) on the toolbar
  3. Open Page Settings
  4. Select “Redirect this page to” and write the target page in the input box
  5. Click “Apply changes” and save

In general, there should’t be anything else on the redirect page. Text or other content may break the redirect or be ignored. However, the redirect page can be categorized, in which case the categories should be on a different line after the redirect tag (in source editor).

A redirect page is also automatically created when a page is moved. The content and edit history of the page is moved to the new name, while a page is created with the old name, redirecting to the page with new name. Users with power user status can suppress a redirect page from being created automatically.

Learn more

Broken redirects and double redirects

Sometimes, redirects can stop working. Such cases are broken redirects and double redirects.

A broken redirect is a redirect page that doesn’t lead to any existing page. Broken redirects are typically born, when the target page is deleted. A broken redirect can also be created, if the editor inputs a page name that doesn’t exist. Broken redirects appear as functional links and can confuse readers. Broken redirects should be fixed by linking them to an existing page or deleted. You can find a list of broken redirects at Special:BrokenRedirects.

A double redirect is a redirect page that leads to another redirect page. If a reader clicks on a double redirect, they won’t be taken to the target page where the content is, but to the second redirect page. This will confuse readers, and at worst, can lead to redirect chains or loops, leading nowhere. Double redirects are typically born when a page is moved several times, causing the old redirect pages to become double redirects. Double redirects should be fixed by linking them to the final target page with content, or deleted if needed. You can find a list of double redirects at Special:DoubleRedirects.

Overwriting a redirect

If the redirect page leads to the page you wish to move under the redirect page’s name and the redirect page has not been edited since being created, the move can still be done. In that case, the old redirect page is overwritten, and the move appears as a deletion. Overwrite can be done even if the user does not have a right to delete pages normally.

If the redirect page has been edited or it leads to another page, it has to be deleted in a normal fashion before the move can be done.

More on the topic

  • Redirect, Wikipedia help page about redirects
  • Redirects, MediaWiki help page about redirects