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Moderators on SE 2.0 sites can edit the first portion of the site FAQ (entitled “What kind of questions should I not ask here?”) to more accurately define the scope and nature of the site. That's a great feature, and I just tried to put it to good use on the Philosophy site.

The default, boilerplate text used <span> tags to indicate a phrase that should appear highlighted, so I followed the same model in my revisions:

The Philosophy&mdash;Stack Exchange site is for <span class="revision-comment">
philosophers, students of philosophy, and those interested in the history of
ideas and the rational analysis of concepts</span>.

Unfortunately, after I saved the changes, the updated entry no longer included any highlighted portion. Baffled, I checked that I had used the <span> tags correctly, verified that I hadn't entered a phrase that the system considered too long to be highlighted, and tried a different web browser. None of these things worked; I still couldn't get the primary description to appear with a special accent.

An examination of the final HTML code revealed the problem: the <span> tags were getting filtered out from my submission and not appearing in the page's HTML at all!

Looking at the other SE 2.0 sites that have modified their FAQ entries, it appears that the same thing is happening there as well.

I presume this is because only a subset of HTML tags are allowed in the edit box and the rest are automatically stripped. But if that's the case, we need to add a special condition to the tag-stripper that allows the span class="revision-comment"> tag to be used here, or provide some other type of markdown syntax that can be used to indicate which phrase should have this special treatment applied.

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