PEP 9 – Sample Plaintext PEP Template
- Barry Warsaw <barry at python.org>
- Python-Dev thread
As of 05-Jan-2016, this PEP is officially deprecated and replaced
by PEP 12. All PEPs should now use the reStructuredText format
described by PEP 12, and plaintext PEPs will no longer be
This PEP provides a boilerplate or sample template for creating
your own plaintext PEPs. In conjunction with the content
guidelines in PEP 1 , this should make it easy for you to
conform your own PEPs to the format outlined below.
Note: if you are reading this PEP via the web, you should first
grab the plaintext source of this PEP in order to complete the
steps below. DO NOT USE THE HTML FILE AS YOUR TEMPLATE!
To get the source this (or any) PEP, look at the top of the HTML
page and click on the date & time on the "Last-Modified" line. It
is a link to the source text in the Python repository.
If you would prefer to use lightweight markup in your PEP, please
see PEP 12, "Sample reStructuredText PEP Template" .
PEP submissions come in a wide variety of forms, not all adhering
to the format guidelines set forth below. Use this template, in
conjunction with the content guidelines in PEP 1, to ensure that
your PEP submission won't get automatically rejected because of
How to Use This Template
To use this template you must first decide whether your PEP is
going to be an Informational or Standards Track PEP. Most PEPs
are Standards Track because they propose a new feature for the
Python language or standard library. When in doubt, read PEP 1
for details or contact the PEP editors <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
Once you've decided which type of PEP yours is going to be, follow
the directions below.
- Make a copy of this file (.txt file, not HTML!) and perform the
- Replace the "PEP: 9" header with "PEP: XXX" since you don't yet
have a PEP number assignment.
- Change the Title header to the title of your PEP.
- Leave the Version and Last-Modified headers alone; we'll take
care of those when we check your PEP into Python's Subversion
repository. These headers consist of keywords ("Revision" and
"Date" enclosed in "$"-signs) which are automatically expanded
by the repository. Please do not edit the expanded date or
- Change the Author header to include your name, and optionally
your email address. Be sure to follow the format carefully:
your name must appear first, and it must not be contained in
parentheses. Your email address may appear second (or it can be
omitted) and if it appears, it must appear in angle brackets.
It is okay to obfuscate your email address.
- If there is a mailing list for discussion of your new feature,
add a Discussions-To header right after the Author header. You
should not add a Discussions-To header if the mailing list to be
used is either email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org,
or if discussions should be sent to you directly. Most
Informational PEPs don't have a Discussions-To header.
- Change the Status header to "Draft".
- For Standards Track PEPs, change the Type header to "Standards
- For Informational PEPs, change the Type header to
- For Standards Track PEPs, if your feature depends on the
acceptance of some other currently in-development PEP, add a
Requires header right after the Type header. The value should
be the PEP number of the PEP yours depends on. Don't add this
header if your dependent feature is described in a Final PEP.
- Change the Created header to today's date. Be sure to follow
the format carefully: it must be in dd-mmm-yyyy format, where
the mmm is the 3 English letter month abbreviation, e.g. one of
Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec.
- For Standards Track PEPs, after the Created header, add a
Python-Version header and set the value to the next planned
version of Python, i.e. the one your new feature will hopefully
make its first appearance in. Do not use an alpha or beta
release designation here. Thus, if the last version of Python
was 2.2 alpha 1 and you're hoping to get your new feature into
Python 2.2, set the header to:
- Leave Post-History alone for now; you'll add dates to this
header each time you post your PEP to email@example.com or
firstname.lastname@example.org. E.g. if you posted your PEP to the lists
on August 14, 2001 and September 3, 2001, the Post-History
header would look like:
Post-History: 14-Aug-2001, 03-Sept-2001
You must manually add new dates and check them in. If you don't
have check-in privileges, send your changes to the PEP editor.
- Add a Replaces header if your PEP obsoletes an earlier PEP. The
value of this header is the number of the PEP that your new PEP
is replacing. Only add this header if the older PEP is in
"final" form, i.e. is either Accepted, Final, or Rejected. You
aren't replacing an older open PEP if you're submitting a
- Now write your Abstract, Rationale, and other content for your
PEP, replacing all this gobbledygook with your own text. Be sure
to adhere to the format guidelines below, specifically on the
prohibition of tab characters and the indentation requirements.
- Update your References and Copyright section. Usually you'll
place your PEP into the public domain, in which case just leave
the "Copyright" section alone. Alternatively, you can use the
Open Publication License, but public domain is still strongly
- Leave the little Emacs turd at the end of this file alone,
including the formfeed character ("^L", or \f).
- Send your PEP submission to the PEP editors (email@example.com),
along with $100k in unmarked pennies. (Just kidding, I wanted
to see if you were still awake. :)
Plaintext PEP Formatting Requirements
PEP headings must begin in column zero and the initial letter of
each word must be capitalized as in book titles. Acronyms should
be in all capitals. The body of each section must be indented 4
spaces. Code samples inside body sections should be indented a
further 4 spaces, and other indentation can be used as required to
make the text readable. You must use two blank lines between the
last line of a section's body and the next section heading.
You must adhere to the Emacs convention of adding two spaces at
the end of every sentence. You should fill your paragraphs to
column 70, but under no circumstances should your lines extend
past column 79. If your code samples spill over column 79, you
should rewrite them.
Tab characters must never appear in the document at all. A PEP
should include the standard Emacs stanza included by example at
the bottom of this PEP.
When referencing an external web page in the body of a PEP, you
should include the title of the page in the text, with a
footnote reference to the URL. Do not include the URL in the body
text of the PEP. E.g.
Refer to the Python Language web site  for more details.
When referring to another PEP, include the PEP number in the body
text, such as "PEP 1". The title may optionally appear. Add a
footnote reference, a number in square brackets. The footnote
body should include the PEP's title and author. It may optionally
include the explicit URL on a separate line, but only in the
References section. Note that the pep2html.py script will
calculate URLs automatically. For example:
Refer to PEP 1  for more information about PEP style
 PEP 1, PEP Purpose and Guidelines, Warsaw, Hylton
If you decide to provide an explicit URL for a PEP, please use
this as the URL template:
PEP numbers in URLs must be padded with zeros from the left, so as
to be exactly 4 characters wide, however PEP numbers in the text
are never padded.
 PEP 1, PEP Purpose and Guidelines, Warsaw, Hylton
 PEP 12, Sample reStructuredText PEP Template, Goodger, Warsaw
This document has been placed in the public domain.
Last modified: 2023-09-09 17:39:29 GMT