Wikipedia:Banning policy

A ban is a formal prohibition from editing some or all Wikipedia pages, or a formal prohibition from making certain types of edits on Wikipedia pages. Bans can be imposed for a specified or an indefinite duration.

Bans are a possible outcome of dispute resolution. They may be imposed by a consensus of the community, by the Arbitration Committee, the Wikimedia Foundation, or by administrators (in certain topic areas). A ban is normally a site ban (prohibiting all editing), but it may be limited to a page ban, a topic ban (prohibiting edits on pages relating to certain topic areas) or an interaction ban (prohibiting edits that interact with certain other editors).

Bans are different from blocks, which are used by administrators to technically prevent a user account or IP address from editing Wikipedia. Blocks are used chiefly to deal with immediate problems such as vandalism, disruptive editing or edit warring. A ban, on the other hand, does not technically prevent editing; however, blocks may be used to enforce bans.

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