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I often see people editing questions to remove technologies from the title or at least commenting for example "Please don't prefix your titles with "C#, Gridview, LINQ", that's what the tags are for".

I try to avoid myself adding things to the title that i could tag. But to be honest i'm not convinced that this is useful in any case.

Consider following title "How to group a query with LINQ?". Although it's still broad and unclear, it's much better than a simple "How to group a query" which doesn't describe the topic at all(group with SQL-Server or whatever). This does not only make it easier to distinguish one question from another but also makes it better searchable.

So are there any advices or best practices on titling SO-Question?

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@Robert: But does that make a difference? My example is the first crossing my mind and for sure not the best one, but i hope you understand the point. –  Tim Schmelter Jan 17 '12 at 23:27
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See also meta.stackexchange.com/questions/61055 –  Robert Harvey Jan 17 '12 at 23:32
    
So you mean that not the technology itself(in case it's not absolutely redundant) is the problem but prefixing the title with it?! I'm still not 100% convinced that there's a difference but i've misunderstood that so far. Edit: Thanks for the link. –  Tim Schmelter Jan 17 '12 at 23:34
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Google results will also show linq - Linq: How to group a query? which just looks bad. With longer tags you're probably pushing people who want an answer right now to glance down to the next search result -- 50+ chars (tags are limited to 25) is a lot. –  Matthew Read Jan 17 '12 at 23:36
    
@Robert: If you would summarize these comments as answer i can upvote and accept it, that sounds more reasonable now :) –  Tim Schmelter Jan 17 '12 at 23:49
    
Please, never stick tags into the title just because you (hypothetical person) thinks it belongs; I don't want to think this hammer belongs in your (hypothetical) head. Hammer: Why can I no longer count to blue? –  Won't Jan 18 '12 at 16:34

1 Answer 1

up vote 9 down vote accepted

Technologies that are added to the title organically, as in your example of "How to group a query with LINQ?", are seldom contested. It's the ones that start with the technology in question, as in "Linq: How to group a query" that are disputed.

The latter form is disputed in no small part because it encourages atrocities such as "[SOLVED] How to group a query." Hence the prohibition on prefixes; it's better to just discourage people from adding any kind of prefix to a question title.

The SEO for Stack Overflow already appends the principal tag to the <title> element of the post, as in "Linq - How to Group a Query", so that Stack Overflow appears higher in search results than sites which copy Stack Overflow's content.

See Also
When should we remove pseudo-tags from a title?

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The tag that gets added to the title is the most populous one that doesn't already appear in the title, so there's no tag duplication. –  Rob Kennedy Jan 18 '12 at 4:16
    
What is the "principal tag"? That one with the most questions? If so, it would be a good practice to suffix the technology. Consider following example: "Which is the fastest algorithm to find prime numbers?", what should be a good title according to your definition. But if i would tag it with C# , VB.NET and .NET, it's principal tag would be C#. But the algorithm would be language independent, therefore it would be a good idea to title it "Which is the fastest algorithm to find prime numbers in .NET?". I'm right, am I not? –  Tim Schmelter Jan 18 '12 at 11:05

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