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I was looking through the meta questions, and saw a few on tags. This inspired me to participate in tag cleanup.

As I was editing away, I realized that as a 20k user, I have near-unlimited powers to edit tags. For example, I was looking at and , and decided that I should combine them into microgravity. Now, it is entirely within my powers to edit all zero-gravities into microgravity, write a new tag-wiki for microgravity, and then synonym them.

Another possibility is following James's suggestion to eliminate the history tag. I could redo all the history related wikis and then re-tag all 102 questions under history.

The question is, given that I intend to do this with the utmost care and accuracy strictly for the benefit of the site, should I do this without getting community input from meta? And what constitutes community input? If I get 10 upvotes but one answer saying this is a dumb idea, do I go ahead with it?


In the spirit of peer-review, as suggested below, I would like to bump this post again to get more feedback related to James' proposal as linked above. Basically, I would like to review and re-tag all the questions that should belong under , etc.

Then, instead of going with new history development tag, I would like to re-do the description of to specify that it is for the process of building the history of an invented world, not for events related to the actual history of our world.

If there are no great objections I will begin doing this next week.

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    $\begingroup$ One should always use caution when rewriting history. We have a number of questions discussing the dangers of that kind of time travel. :-) $\endgroup$ – SRM Feb 24 '17 at 18:07
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    $\begingroup$ I suggest you use the Proposed Tag Edit Sandbox. $\endgroup$ – SRM Feb 24 '17 at 18:08
  • $\begingroup$ Man. Warn a guy before you bring up something a year old! :D $\endgroup$ – James Feb 24 '17 at 18:24
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Thanks for your help in moderating the site!

The general rule I think we follow is: the larger the impact, the more you should seek consensus (on meta) before acting. Eliminate a tag that's used on three questions and that nobody seems to care about? Just do it. Make a change that affects hundreds of questions? Let's talk.

For tag merges, by the way, moderators have tools that can do the merge without editing (and thus bumping) each individual question. Editing to change tags is best for cases where the number of edits is smaller. Nobody should have to spend his time editing 102 questions one at a time.

I find it's also best to do these kinds of edits in batches of no more than about 10. Too many edits at once can push newly-asked (or newly-answered) questions off the front page before people have had a chance to see them.

About the tags (recent edit to question): I agree with that approach, and since it has to be done one question at a time anyway, it can be done as people are available. I'm all about incremental improvement. :-)

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  • $\begingroup$ The problem with James' suggestion, and the reason I don't think it was acted on, is that each of the 102 questions would need to be read and re-classified. But I'm following you on that, so I'll probably answer James's question with my proposed solution, since that will affect so many tags. I'll do the changes on the weekend so no-one notices :) $\endgroup$ – kingledion Feb 24 '17 at 17:43
  • $\begingroup$ What Monica said. $\endgroup$ – James Feb 24 '17 at 18:24
  • $\begingroup$ @kingledion having now reread James's old suggestion, yes I see -- in that case it's more of a tag re-org that requires individual edits. For something like merging zero-g into micro-g, assuming we had lots of questions, mods can do that without editing all the questions. True merges we can do in bulk; actual cleanup requires touching individual questions. $\endgroup$ – Monica Cellio Feb 24 '17 at 18:27
  • $\begingroup$ For some crazy reason, I'm currently reading my way through all the questions on the site (although I'm only about 0.5% of the way in) - is there any way that a relatively low-rep user (such as me!) who's reading through all the questions on the site can help with this? It's very interesting, but very slow $\endgroup$ – Mithrandir24601 Feb 24 '17 at 19:41
  • $\begingroup$ Hmm. I think it should not matter how many questions would be affected by the tag edit, when determining editing a tag, but whether the edit is objectively sound or not. Just my subjective thought. Of course the mods know better. $\endgroup$ – Youstay Igo Feb 24 '17 at 19:51
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    $\begingroup$ @Mithrandir24601 I wouldn't want to spam meta with too much traffic, but if you are exhaustively reading through everything and you do find a group of questions with significant tagging problems, bring it up. I certainly would help fix problems. I already re-tagged that zombie-whales nonsense :) $\endgroup$ – kingledion Feb 24 '17 at 20:03
  • $\begingroup$ @YoustayIgo the number of questions shouldn't much affect whether; it's more about how. Editing a bunch of questions one by one is a lot of work for the person doing the editing and bumps all those questions on the front page, so if it looks like there are a lot, and it's something mods can do more easily, please ask a mod! (Well, ideally ask on meta where everybody can see.) I'm not trying to dampen enthusiasm, just save work and reduce impact where possible. $\endgroup$ – Monica Cellio Feb 24 '17 at 20:22
  • $\begingroup$ @Mithrandir24601 Depending on the problem you can raise it in chat, flag it, or ask a meta question about it. The discussion in chat is probably the best place to start. Once you get to 2k rep question edits will become easier for you and once you get to 3k you can start doing close and re-open votes as well. $\endgroup$ – Tim B Feb 25 '17 at 13:55

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