A July 2022 renovation of the reality-check tag and others has changed the context of this question. It is now obsolete. Please see the following question and the link under "Conclusion." If we can't burn the "reality check" tag, can we rename it?
A comment to Reasoning about the thermal conductivity of a rigid body states,
I’m voting to close this question because it has "science-based" as a tag, but puts in conditions that explicitly deny known science, specifically, that contradict relativity.
This site regularly assumes that questions must conform to real-life, and so I feel it's important to clarify the tag summary and the tag wiki. The summary reads:
For questions that require answers based on hard science, not magic or pseudo-science, but do not require scientific citations.
Which suggests that the first linked question should be closed for failing to meet the expectations of the tag. However, the wiki includes...
Questions with this tag should be answered, as far as possible, based on known scientific facts or reasonable extrapolations from those, but answers are not required to provide scientific citations. ... Most answers on Worldbuilding are expected to be based on logic and, to some degree, science by default, so even questions without this tag may receive scientific answers. However, the use of this tag indicates that the asker wants specifically science based answers....
Which is a lot less demanding than the summary suggests. My question is based on the following investigation, "Does it make sense that we should or should not use the science-based tag when asking for a real-life science-based answer to a question that has worldbuilding rules that diverge from known science?"
My opinion: It is my opinion that tags scope the answer, not the question. This, despite the fact that most wikis (including that for science-based) talk about their attachment to the question. If I'm right in this opinion, then a casual effort to begin cleaning up wikis so they reflect this would be appreciated. If my opinion is in error, then we have a problem, because there isn't a convenient tag that expresses the idea, "given the rules of my world, does this circumstance reflect (or could it reflect) real-world science?" In a sense, the OP might have needed to choose reality-check rather than science-based, but that, too, would not have reflected exactly what they were looking for.
Question: Should the science-based tag summary and wiki be updated to reflect the OP's desire that answers should, as far as possible, reflect real-life science rather than demanding that the answers reflect only real-life science? Said another way, should the wiki be modified to reflect the summary, or should the summary be modified to reflect the wiki?
1. Please note that the first linked question is on the verge of closure due to this very issue.
2. In a sense, I'm asking where the line between "science" and "pseudo-science" is drawn. All world rules that vary from what we "know to be true" in real life could be said to reflect "pseudo-science." However, that's kinda the point of this site... to help people develop an alternative-science (aka "pseudo-science") that can be consistently used to develop stories. It's a tough row to hoe if we start punishing people for trying to create a world rule that both meets their needs and can be expressed in the context of real-life or varies as little as possible from real-life.