This proposition occurred to me when I have seen a case of mistyped tag on a question on SU.
The tag used was "identiy-theft", which is obviously mistyped. It got changed to identity-theft, but the identiy-theft tag still exists, even though there are no questions associated with it.
The problem is that tags are entered with a list of propositions, when someone asks a question. New users are not able to create tags anyway, so they will use these ones for sure. The problem then, is that if such mistyped tags are provided in the proposition list, then it's easy for someone to choose it quickly, just because it resembles the tag they actually want. I was at first thinking about some moderation requests, like many on this site, to "remove" a tag, but it's not really a solution.
So, my proposition would be to remove automatically tags when no question uses them. This way, let's see the following of actions :
- Someone creates a mistyped tag in his question
- It will most likely be corrected by another user (or the author himself)
- The mistyped tag won't be used by any question anymore
- The tag is deleted, so it won't be proposed for next questions
This doesn't prevent someone to come and create the mistyped tag again, of course. But at least it would be a community-driven way of getting rid of such "unwanted" tags, and it would reduce the risk of seeing it used again, just because it was proposed.
Edit : Ok, according to answers, they are already being cleaned up, but I guess that for performance issues, only periodically.
Thanks for answers !