Forums: Ask the Editors: Why do episode summaries have to be original?

  • Avatar of kittykatz5k


    [1]Jun 4, 2013
    • member since: 06/22/04
    • level: 3
    • rank: Soup Nazi
    • posts: 1

    I understand episode recaps, that's like a personal essay about the episode in most every case. Episode summaries though in almost all cases get an official summary released by the makers of the shows themselves for websites like these to use. Doesn't it feel a little foolish to reject the summaries that makers want you to use in favor of very often poorly worded summaries that might even contain spoilers the makers didn't want you to know before watching?

    This is an especially painful problem when you get episodes that aren't out yet but are fully ready to be added to an episode guide. Why would we have a better summary of an episode that's not out yet than the makers of the show?

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  • Avatar of Gislef


    [2]Jun 4, 2013
    • member since: 04/22/05
    • level: 102
    • rank: "Hey, hey, hey!"
    • posts: 23,887
    Well, since you asked us editors, it doesn't feel foolish to me. Because those are the rules. It'd feel more foolish if I accepted them and got warned/suspended/banned.

    Accepting summaries with spoilers isn't allowed, so if someone is doing that, they're not doing it correctly. I've seen summaries from the makers with spoilers, so taking "official" summaries is no guarantee of spoiler avoidance.

    As an editor, I've never accepted or submitted a poorly worded summary. And I've seen some "official" summaries that have typos and grammatical errors. So yes, some of those summaries that I've rewritten for episodes before they aired were better than the ones that the makers put out there.

    My understanding is that wants the summaries here to be unique to That's not unreasonable. If there is a summary here that has poor grammar and typos, or contains spoilers, go ahead and submit a fix. Most editors will take it right away, and all editors have to.

    Also, for episodes before they air, the idea is to rewrite an existing official summary. Not to create an original summary. For the points you get for it, it seems reasonable to provide your own work.
    Edited on 06/04/2013 3:01pm
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  • Avatar of jessicakroeber


    [3]Jun 4, 2013
    • member since: 06/30/11
    • level: 40
    • rank: Bewitched
    • posts: 443

    Staff asks that you write original summaries for episodes & shows and original biographies for people on so that we have original content on We want the words on our site to be directly from users, just like you! It is in our guidelines. If you have questions, please PM me at jessicakroeber. Thanks!

    Edited on 06/04/2013 3:12pm
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