An edit summary is a brief explanation of an edit to a page. After you click Save page on the top left part of the page, a summary window will appear:
When you make an edit, major or minor, always put at least a single word description in the Summary text box. This allows others who have selected that page for their watchlist to know, at a glance, what has been changed.
If you are making minor changes such as spelling corrections, formatting, and minor rearrangement of text, check the This is a minor edit box.
Marking a significant change as a minor edit is considered bad behaviour, and even more so if it involves the deletion of some text. If you have accidentally marked an edit as minor, a best practice is to edit the page again, mark it major (or, rather, ensure that the check-box for This is a minor edit is not checked), and, in the summary, state that the previous change was a major one.
All editors are encouraged to be bold, but there are several things that you can do to ensure that major edits are performed smoothly.
- Before engaging in a major edit, consider discussing proposed changes on the article discussion/talk page.
- Additionally, making major changes on a subject outside of one's expertise area should also first be discussed.
- Once the edit has been completed, make sure you include a summary of the edit stating that you made a major change.