- When two or more parties are involved in an edit war, the first to revert to their version three times wins. This is especially true if there was a reference to Nazism or Hitler in the edit summary (cf. Godwin).
In Wikipedia's early days, it was common for users to spend large amounts of time reverting edits made by other users. They were allowed to revert pages as much as they liked and for any reason they like. In 2002, Wikipedia owner Jimbo polled users to determine why they edited the last page they edited. The results were thus:
- 92% - Nobody else is allowed to edit MY page
- 7% - Informing everyone that someone the editor knows is homosexual
- 1% - Inserting punctuation
Determined to boost the percentage of edits from the "homosexual" category, Jimbo decided that edit wars were too comical and distracted from the work needing to be done. Thus, he invented 3RR.
Clearly, 3RR shortens edit wars considerably, usually to less than a minute. Because of the short length of time for which Wikipedia edit wars last, an editor who makes a tactical error has usually already lost the war. To this extent, many reverting strategies are often used on Wikipedia. Here is a list of the most notable of these strategies:
This strategy is simple. Rather than having one person make three reverts, three people make one revert. With well-timed coordination, a "war" can be won in a matter of one second. This practice was banned in 2005, as it provided an unfair advantage for the estimated twelve Wikipedians who have friends. Anyone caught doing this will be Banned from the Internet.
A similar strategy to the above; dummying is the process of having an ally act like a n00b or dummy and make obvious vandalism edits immediately after the "primary user" is done editing. This way, the opponent gets stuck behind the "Edit conflict" screen while the primary user quickly reverts the vandalism.
edit Porn in the summary
Arguably the least eloquent of the various strategies, this one works by putting the URL to a free porn website in the edit summary box. Those attempting to revert you will go to the page, assuming that you put some important message there. When they see the porn, they instantly forget about Wikipedia and masturbate.
edit Personal attack
This unorthodox method relies on an inflated ego. The first person who used it wrote in the edit summary "The next person to edit this page sucks shark cock." The person who used it was a legitimate sucker of shark cock, and so he was able to edit the page freely. He continues to use this in every edit summary to this day.
edit False count
This is loosely based off The Oldest Trick in the Book. To do this, on your first edit for any given edit war, claim that you have already hit three reverts. Your opponent will check to see that you have not, and subsequently will place a note on your talk page notifying you that you have only done one edit. While he is doing this, you have more than enough time to blank and revert the page up to three reverts.
edit "The Bugs"
Named after inventor Bugs Bunny, "The Bugs" refers to any process wherein you confuse another editor into reverting to your edit instead of theirs. Most of the time, this requires skillful placement of comment tags. For exceptionally stupid editors, simply telling him that he is reverting to the wrong page works.