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Wikipedia:Changing username

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Before requesting a username change (rename), please read through the Must Read section to know the limitations and alternatives.

If the username change is simple and you have a confirmed email address, use Global user account rename request. For other cases, use the appropriate request page listed below.

Usernames are global,[a] and are the same on all Wikimedia projects―Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons, etc. Requests to change a username are processed by users enabled to do so (global renamers and stewards) in accordance with the global rename policy.

Requests for usernames which are offensive, promotional, disruptive, misleading, or confusing are not accepted.

Must read

  • A rename moves your contributions and userspace pages to a new name, and preserves your account preferences.
  • If the job queue is very busy, it might take a number of hours before the software re-assigns all your contributions to your new name.
  • Using your real name as a username may put you at risk of harassment.

Limitations and restrictions

  • Accounts cannot be merged or deleted. They can only be renamed.
  • It is not possible to re-assign edits identified with an IP address (made while not logged in).
  • Usernames are subject to technical restrictions.
  • Existing signatures and mentions of the old username in discussions are not affected by a rename.
  • Renames appear in the user rename log and global rename log and requests are moved to the archives. This is done in the interest of transparency.

Please consider the following alternatives to a rename

  • Although your username cannot begin with a lowercase letter, try placing {{lowercase}} on your userpage in order to display it that way.
  • If you simply want to change your "public appearance" on talk pages, you can change your signature. Note that this is not an acceptable alternative to changing your username if the name is in breach of the username policy.
  • If you want to retire from Wikipedia, place {{retired}} or a similar declaration on your userpage. A request for a rename to something like RetiredUser123 will be declined. Users in good standing wishing to vanish completely, perhaps by way of a rename to a random character string, are an exception to this rule.

Other things to consider

Request pages

If you are certain you want to change your username, use the appropriate request page to avoid any delay or rejection.

Note: to confirm an email address, see Wikipedia:Enabling email and Help:Email confirmation.
  • Simple or complex renames (no confirmed email required): use Simple.
This page is for renames to usernames that are not already taken. Check Global account information to see whether the username you want is available—if it is taken on any Wikimedia project, it is not available for use.
  • Renames to taken usernames (with no significant activity): use Usurpations.
This page is for renames to usernames that are already taken and have no significant edits or log actions and for which there are no significant attached accounts on other Wikimedia projects.
  • Renames to taken usernames (with significant project attachments): use Steward requests.
This page is for usernames that have no significant edits or log actions, but have significant attachments on other Wikimedia projects.

Footnotes

  1. ^ Usernames have been global since 2014, when Wikimedia implemented single user login (SUL) over the entirety of Wikimedia projects, including the English Wikipedia.