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Trope Decay

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Sometimes, the idea of what a trope is about is lost along the way. New examples get written by imitating previous examples, or just by reading the page title and free-associating. Then more examples are written in imitation of those bogus examples. Some helpful soul rewrites the description to match the expanded set of examples, which inspires even further far-fetched examples. Eventually the page degenerates into a list of television shows people like.


The cure for decay is to edit vigorously: trim shoehorned examples so they don't inspire more shoehorned examples. Ensure the page description begins by describing the trope and ends once it has finished describing the trope, so people actually read it.

"A rare variation:" and "a literal example:" are two wiki-specific stock phrases you'll often see used to rationalise contrived examples. Zap 'em.

For a comprehensive list of pages prone to gangrene, see Square Peg, Round Trope.

When decay becomes a chronic condition, it may be necessary to rename the trope to avoid confusion, or remove the trope, or completely rewrite it. The Trope Repair Shop is where these cleanup discussions happen.

See also Canonical List of Subtle Trope Distinctions and Missing Supertrope.

Alternative Title(s): Trope Creep, Example Creep, Example Decay


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