Administrivia: What Goes Where on the Wiki

Here at TV Tropes we have plenty of different kinds of content. We point out patterns in a work, discuss patterns that may or may not be in that work, share our reactions to fictional happenings and take wild guesses at what happens next - among other things, most of which are not considered tropes. It became clear early on that letting all this content mix together was not the best idea.

For this reason, we came up with different categories of articles, so that for a given work there'd be a separate article for each type of content. Later we implemented namespaces (see that page for a technical explanation) and a top-page banner system, so that it'd be easier to see right away which category an article belongs to.

Seeing as all this can get very confusing for new people, and in some cases even veteran tropers, here's a breakdown of what goes where on the wiki.


These are recurring patterns, elements, techniques, and progressions that the creator unquestionably put into the work to add information of some nature or to elicit a particular response or reaction from the audience. In the case of video games and other interactive media, gameplay elements fall in this category as well.

Articles from this category:
  • Are found on the main namespace.
  • Have no banner at the top.
  • Have open-to-editing example lists unless otherwise noted.
  • Are listed on a works's main page, as well as its character sheet if it has one. If there are enough examples for a given objective trope, it might have its own subpage.
  • Are Pot Holed anywhere.
  • Have no identifying icon.


YMMV stands for "Your Mileage May Vary". There have been plenty of attempts to pin down what this class objectively is, but the definition in practice—and the reason the "YMMV" distinction exists in the first place—is simple: it's a YMMV item if editors, drive-by and otherwise, can't stop arguing about it. YMMV basically breaks down into 2 subcategories, which are

  1. All Audience Reactions, without exception; and
  2. Items that appear to have the semblance of an objective trope, except in practice they require a significant judgment call to decide whether, how and to what degree they exist in a work.

The crux of subcategory 2 is that it's impossible to say objectively whether something from it is actually present in the work; the author may have objectively intended to use it, but that's neither here nor there. We try not to take a stand on the Death of the Author issue, but even the most ardent intentionalist would concede that the author intending to have some pattern of fiction in their story doesn't mean the attempt worked.

In theory, Your Mileage May Vary on nearly all tropes. Who says that a Happy Ending is happy, for example? In practice, what we mean by a significant judgment call is exactly the duck test outlined above- an item falls under YMMV if people often disagree about it. Either we can figure this out from the definition, or a huge natter infestation wherever the item is mentioned clues us in. Either way, it gets stamped with the "subjective" stamp and relegated to YMMV subpages, where the varying of mileage and resulting natter will not get in the way of the objective tropes.

Articles from this category:
  • Are usually found on the main namespace, but particularly positive or negative ones are found on Sugar Wiki or Darth Wiki, respectively.
  • Have the YMMV banner at the top..
  • Have open-to-editing example lists, though if these turn into wretched hives of Thread Mode, they will likely be subjected to an Example Sectionectomy.
  • Are not listed or Pot Holed in main pages or character sheets, unless they fall under one of the "Exceptions" below. Many have objective counterparts/relatives which can be used instead.
  • Are listed and Pot Holed in YMMV subpages, except those which are:
  • Have the "scales" identifying icon or one of the specific icons listed above.
  • On work and creator pages or character sheets they get marked with a red weighing scale point, to help people locate and remove them.


Facts that occur during or around the production of a work but are not elements written to tell the story. Casting choices not relevant to the story, who did what to whom on set, Throw It In, etc.

Articles from this category:
  • Are found on the main namespace.
  • Have the Trivia banner at the top.
  • Have open-to-editing example lists, unless otherwise noted.
  • Are not listed in main pages, character sheets or YMMV subpages—except when used or referred to In-Universe (for example, with Conversational Troping, or in reference to a Show Within a Show), in which case they go on the main page.
  • Are pot holed anywhere, as long as you don't use this as a ploy to shoehorn Trivia examples where they don't belong; may be listed and Pot Holed in Trivia subpages.
  • Have the "interrobang" identifying icon (looks like a fused exclamation point and question mark).
  • On work pages or character sheets they get marked with a gray interrobang, to help people locate and remove them.

Administrivia/Wiki Tropes

Stuff related to the wiki or the Internet in general, this page included. The "tropes" part is only in the meta sense, if you consider TV Tropes a work of fiction.

Articles from this category:
  • Are usually found on the main namespace or administrivia namespace.
  • Have no banner at the top.
  • Usually have no in-article example lists.
  • Are listed and Potholed anywhere, though the situation rarely calls for it.

Just for Fun

Pages that basically play by their own rules. We keep them around, because... well they're fun.

Articles from this category:
  • Spread about evenly among the Main namespace, Sugar Wiki, Darth Wiki and Just for Fun namespace.
  • Have the Just For Fun banner at the top (not used much currently, implementation pending).
  • Sometimes have open-to-editing example lists.
  • Are Pot Holed anywhere within the confines of good taste.

Flame Bait

These have the Flame Bait banner, many of the ones on Darth Wiki have had their redirects from the Main wiki made members of the Permanent Red Link Club. The reason for this is they are used to complain, attract massive amounts of natter and don't actually contribute anything to the wiki's mission. Do not list or pothole these anywhere, and no examples outside their main page (if the page accepts examples - some of them we don't want any examples of, please). The only exception to this is within trope descriptions (above the examples line).


Seeing as every self-respecting rule system needs exceptions, here's a few we made up just to confuse you:
  • If YMMV, Trivia, or Flame Bait items happen In-Universe, are invoked, or are part of a Show Within a Show, we treat them like an objective trope. Make sure to explicitly mention the example is "In-universe" or "invoked". It turns off the YMMV flagger and makes sure it doesn't get moved by mistake. You can also use the [[invoked]] markup, which does the same without appearing in the text at all.
  • We're more lenient with links in image captions. If a YMMV applies to the image somehow, it's usually fine. Just make sure you aren't lapsing into gushing, complaining or Take That territory. Links and potholes in the descriptions and related tropes sections are also fine for YMMV and objective trope articles, as long as you keep the overall tone neutral. Not so much for descriptions of works.
  • Trivia entries can be listed as examples on pages that describe actors, writers, directors, musicians or other creators in general. These already contain mostly trivia information. There's no sense in splitting them. See also Creator Page Guidelines.
  • Certain YMMV or Trivia items may be split into their own subpage and namespace, if the work contains enough examples of them. These don't get the banners automatically, unlike the non-tropes with dedicated buttons.
  • Finally, certain namespaces that are just for fun also don't need to obey these rules. These include Fridge, Headscratchers, Wild Mass Guessing, Haiku Wiki, and Analysis. Same goes for the Discussions, Reviews and Live Blogs sections. This does not mean you can do whatever you please there.

Alternative Title(s):

What Goes Where, What Goes Where On The Wiki