I was re-tagging questions and it occurred to me to make a tag for all those questions that are "what if"s and the like.

Alarms went off in my head about what that encourages, considering the issues of breadth that a lot of questions have and a lot of questions are at risk of.

Since not all questions are speculative (many are about requesting expertise), would such a tag have any purpose or is it just an invitation for broad questions that are off-topic?

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    $\begingroup$ Logical analysis, rather than speculation. Here are a set of parameters, (some may be fantasy) but logic your way to a conclusion. I'm on the fence about a tag for this either way. $\endgroup$ – James Oct 14 '14 at 15:54
  • $\begingroup$ @James I don't think anyone is in favor of "speculative" being a tag, but are you proposing the opposite? A tag for non-speculative questions? I feel that it overlaps with science-based. $\endgroup$ – mechalynx Oct 14 '14 at 15:57
  • $\begingroup$ No not really, I was just trying to come up with an alternate name for speculation. Focus on the act of applying the logic as opposed to just speculating. $\endgroup$ – James Oct 14 '14 at 15:59

I don't see a purpose for the tag. Would anyone want to follow "speculative"? Is anyone an expert on "speculative"? Does it tell people anything that the question itself does not?

I have no problem with it existing but don't see what it gives us.

  • $\begingroup$ I don't see a clear purpose for it either, but someone might want to follow it because they want to know about questions such as "Would elves develop modern technology" rather than "Is it possible for mammals to develop with 6 legs". Both are speculative but the former is more strongly so and doesn't require much technical knowledge. No one is an expert on 'speculative' but they may be keen on arbitrary hypothetical fantasy stuff and creative with it. I don't know if it tells people anything more, that's why I'm on the fence on this. Speculative could be the opposite of science-based. $\endgroup$ – mechalynx Oct 11 '14 at 11:08

I think it is difficult to label a question as speculative before seeing the answers. The fact that someone is asking the question makes it likely they are not sure whether it is realistic or not.

I think a speculative tag could become confusing and lead to disagreements about when it is appropriate. I'd expect it to be divisive, without adding much, so I'd rather we didn't have such a tag.


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