I was looking through some of the tags on this site, and, well, yecccch. And then I thought, hey, could this be part of the Programmers.SE Summer Cleaning project?

For instance, the question Do we need a programming tag here? was asked last December. The accepted answer said:

This tag needs to be killed and blacklisted with extreme prejudice.

There are 122 questions tagged with : every question is about programming.

Today, there are 421 questions tagged .

There are also:

And so on, and so on.

You know what to do…


2 Answers 2


I think this is a great idea, and long overdue, but its one heck of a task. Here's what I got so far:


Blacklist requests

All questions on the site fall into these tags:

, , , ,

Merge discussion needed

Aaronaught's Posse fodder

These tags are smells of likely bad questions and could use some community weeding.

, , , , , ,, , ,

"Fixed the glitch"

Someone retagged all the posts in these tags, so it's no longer a problem:

  • 2
    @Dori Oy. I added programming to the list, but this is starting to remind me of those work montages you see in bad sitcoms where one guy keeps putting more stuff in the other guy's inbox.
    – user8
    Commented Jul 14, 2011 at 6:28
  • 1
    I've tried to go through this for the past hour, but this is a task worthy of Sisyphus. I don't think I put any dent in it.
    – user8
    Commented Jul 14, 2011 at 7:12
  • 2
    I agree 200% with terminating [learning] and [advice]. I still see those used here every single day and they are useless tags on every Stack Exchange, which is an impressive feat; most tags are only locally useless. I don't know if it's possible, but these should really be banned network-wide.
    – Aaronaught
    Commented Jul 15, 2011 at 11:30
  • @Mark I disagree that [self-improvement] should be blacklisted. While I agree that most questions here are about it PSE is open to whiteboard questions and those questions are not about self-improvement. This is a question I asked: programmers.stackexchange.com/questions/48310/… It's ontopic on PSE but it's not about self improvment, is it?
    – Vitor Py
    Commented Jul 15, 2011 at 12:40
  • @Aaronaught, I could see "advice" being useful on e.g. Academia stack exchange. (But I suppose it would probably have some modifier, like "advice counselors" or "career advice" or something.)
    – Wildcard
    Commented Apr 19, 2016 at 1:13

I haven't had much time to check this recently - what with my PC failing - but this is something I can agree with.

However, we need some way of ensuring that we

  1. Get general agreement - even in the cases where we think it's clear cut.
  2. Manage the process so two people don't do the same tags.
  3. Indicate which have been done.

On Web Apps each synonym/merger was posted as a separate question. While we might want to group some this would be good as

  1. We can see whether people agree with the proposal - from the votes and comments.
  2. Indicate which ones each of us is working on - either by posting an answer or editing the question.
  3. Indicate which have been done by adding the tag

Ah - I see Mark's already started - Tag merge discussion: jobs → career

  • 1
    The ones I've merged so far are pluralizations, tag mergers where both tags had < 20 questions, and tags that were little-used synonyms of popular tags. The only one that doesn't fit that was cv → resume, but that's been an outstanding synonym merger for at least a few months. I'm hoping synonym discussions are the smallest part of this cleanup: using the wrong tag synonym, in many cases, is the least of the tagged questions' problems. We really need to people to look at the questions themselves, retag them with something more useful (or just close them), and blacklist many of the bad tags.
    – user8
    Commented Jul 14, 2011 at 19:59

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