Glossary Content Guidelines

(Jan Peuker) #1

Hi everyone and happy new year,

this is Jan, I am new here, excited to join the community. Was just editing a few Glossary articles, because I always felt the need for a beginner-friendly glossary that’s less technical and detailed than Wikipedia (hopefully my understanding is correct).

However, I’ve seen a few edits recently that made me wonder what the Glossary Content Guidelines are. As there is no “Discussion page” per article, can I try my luck here?

For instance, the entry on REST was completely rewritten but is basically a copy of - I’ve fixed the outbound links now as this page looks pretty spammy. But there are other examples, e.g. PHP is from

I’ve checked some of the Contribution Guidelines, but am not 100% sure what to do. Personally I feel the edits above are not properly attributed, but maybe the idea is that the MDN glossary summarises the best content on the web?

Thanks for your guidance,



Hi Jan

There is a page on contributing Glossary entries, here: It says:

Please don’t copy-and-paste definitions from elsewhere (especially not Wikipedia, since its range of license versions is smaller, and thus incompatible with that of MDN). It’s really important to make sure this content is simple and easy to understand. It’s worth spending some time on it rather than stealing content blindly. This glossary should be useful new content, not repeating things from elsewhere.

So: I agree with you that we should not have glossary entries that just copy content from elsewhere. Looking at the history of these pages, you can see that they were both recently rewritten to be copies of existing content, and it’s not obvious to me that the rewrites improved on the originals. IMO we should revert both pages to the previous revisions:$revision/1344647$revision/1344089

Thanks for contributing and flagging this issue!


(Jan Peuker) #3

Hi Will,

thanks a lot for pointing that out, I missed that paragraph. Will revert the articles and also make sure the guideline “Make sure anyone reading the description can understand the defined term immediately” is followed.

Have a good day,


(Eric Shepherd) #4

I just noticed that this page’s description of what “domain” means is pretty awful:

Any takers to update it? :slight_smile:


(Jan Peuker) #5

Yup, just gave it a shot.

(Eric Shepherd) #6

Excellent! Thank you!

Eric Shepherd
Senior Technical Writer

MDN Web Docs: