So, you wanted to create a page for your favorite work, but there's already another work in the same space? As the amount of work pages created grows, the likelihood that a new work page shares the same name as an existing work grows, too. You can still create a new work page, because There Is No Such Thing as Notability always applies, but creating the new page has gotten more complicated.
On this wiki, a Disambiguation Page is used when two or more pages are identified by the same name/term and neither can be said to be more "important" than the other. Misused tropes that become split or are frequently misused sometimes become disambiguations for the renamed trope(s), such as Battle Royale or Hello, Nurse!.
A "disambiguation" may refer to the Disambiguation Page or to the Retronym added to the work's name (always at the end). Adding the year is the most common disambiguation method, but not always the best option.
- Do you have to disambiguate?
This is a contentious point, and must be addressed first. Since the creation of Namespaces, a work and a trope that share the same name no longer requires us to rename the trope. Many tropers in our community have different ideas for when disambiguation is needed (see Page Title Collision). Some tropers have proactively campaigned for alternatives to disambiguation.
When two articles are in separate namespaces but share subpages, you can Soft Split the subpages, keeping the contents separate from each other without having to move either article. If two works share the same title, but one is a remake or adaptation of the first, then it is acceptable to create the sequel/reboot with a Retronym without moving the original work (like splitting a work and its adaptation into different pages). Fanfics, because they are (by definition) derivative works, may be renamed with a disambiguation without requiring any other works that share the same name to be renamed. Aside from these exceptions, we treat every work involved equally, moving each to a disambiguated version of the page.
Here are a few cases when tropers do recommend disambiguation:
- Two or more works share the same name and medium (near-universally accepted for disambiguation).
- A shared subpage is currently Soft Split, but is getting a "this page is too long" error (typically the max length is 500,000 HTML characters).
- Two or more works share multiple subpages.
- Two or more works use the Recap/ subpage as an index.
- Two or more works share the same name.
- Choose a method of disambiguation
Once you have identified a need to disambiguate, you will have to identify a Retronym that you can add at the end of the name for each page you are creating/moving. The preferred method for disambiguating between works of the same name is adding the year of publication, so choosing an alternative retronym would demand a reason for why the year would cause issues.note
- By year; Film.Neighbors 1920 and Film.Neighbors 2014 are unrelated works that happened to share the same name.
- By country of origin; Series.The Office UK and Series.The Office US were not disambiguated by year because many people in the US were learning of the UK version due to the remake, and UK was still airing the original when the US version came over to them. Although the years of production didn't overlap, they were deemed too close and national origin was used instead.
- By creator; VideoGame.Aladdin Virgin Games and VideoGame.Aladdin Capcom were not disambiguated by year because they were both released in 1993 and were both based on Aladdin. Fanfictions are commonly disambiguated by creator or franchise instead of year.
- By profession; Creator.Steve Mc Queen Actor and Creator.Steve Mc Queen Director were not disambiguated by year because they're creators. Adding the original or best-known profession as a retronym for Creators is preferred to year of birth.
- By franchise; Fanfic.Glory MLPFIM and Fanfic.Glory Naruto were disambiguated by source work instead of year because they both began in 2014. Fanfictions are commonly disambiguated by creator or franchise instead of year.
- By console/platform; VideoGame.Transformers The Game Console and VideoGame.Transformers The Game DS were not disambiguated by year because they were both released in 2007, to coincide with the 2007 live-action film. One game was designed for PC/consoles and the other one was designed for a handheld game system, so that was used as the basis of disambiguation instead.
- Create/Move the work pages
See How to Create a Works Page if you need more details. The previous step is intended to help define the TitleGoesHere portion of the where your work is going to go. How to Move a Page is also relevant if the one of the works already has a page. You'll have to move existing subpages as well.
Remember to add the new pages (and subpages) to the relevant indexes after you've created/moved the work pages. How Indexing Works covers this topic in more detail.
- Create the disambiguation page
In many cases you will be creating a disambiguation in a media-specific namespace. If there already is a disambiguation in a different namespace, or if you are disambiguating between works in different namespaces, then the disambiguation page should be in the Main/ namespace.note If there is already a trope there, make sure that there is a paragraph at the end of the description with wicks to each of the disambiguated works.
Which articles should be included in the list? Obviously the two or more pages that you've just disambiguated, but here are additional suggestions: if the Work Name is a common term associated with one or more trope pages, if an unrelated work has a title character who is named Work Name, if the Work Name is the full title of another work (not including subtitles), and if the Work Name is the full subtitle of a work with an unrelated name.
To make a disambiguation page, use the following as a template, with tropes in alphabetical order and then works in chronological order by publication:
Work Name may refer to:
* TropeName, with an explanation for why the two are related
* ''Medium/CharacterAndTheTitle'', ''Character'' is the name of [[AntagonistTitle the antagonist]]. (Only when Work Name is both the name of a character and part of the title.)
* "Medium/WorkName1990", the earliest work with this name.
* ''Medium/WorkNameCreator'', the franchise created later with the same name, by Creator/CreatorName.
** ''Medium/WorkNameYear'', the first work in the series.
* "Work Name", by Creator/OtherCreator, which doesn't have a page yet.
* "Work Name", an episode of ''Medium/UnrelatedWork''
* ''Medium/UnrelatedWorkColonWorkName'', where the subtitle matches WorkName.
If a direct wick has led you here, please correct the link so that it points to the corresponding article.
- Set the page type
This step is nice and quick. Go to the "Page Info" box on the right side of the screen. Click on the edit button next to "Page Type", then set the page type to "a disambiguation". There you go.
You should have removed the wicks for all of the indexes already, but double-check that the work pages (and subpages) are indexed, then go to Ambiguity Index and find the correct alphabetical location for your recently-created disambiguation page. Add it in as Medium.WorkName unless it is in Main/ (in that case, just add it as WorkName).
- Submit a custom title
Most of the time, when we add a Retronym to a work name, we also enclose it in brackets to clarify that it isn't part of the title. "Medium/WorkName1990" should be custom-titled to show as "Work Name (1990)". Remove any existing custom-title from the disambiguation by following the same instructions and submitting the new custom title without the punctuation or altering spacing of the current custom title.
Under the "More" dropdown of the page header, find the "WikiWord" link and click it. Fill out the form to add punctuation, correct capitalization, and so on. New custom title will be applied once a moderator approves it. More detailed instructions for this step can be found at How to Make a Custom Title.
- Cross Wicking
The biggest step; fixing the wicks. You should have already fixed all of the indexes, but the trope pages and the other works referencing the work have to wick to the new location(s). Part of the disambiguation does recommend other tropers fix the wicks, but you are expected to contribute to the move as well.