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There are a number of tags for SQL key words. And I think that makes sense, mostly. However, many of those keywords are not very selective or descriptive by themselves as they are very common words. As SO grows, many of them are competing with other fields. I started editing a new tag wiki on , but now I wonder how deep the rabbit hole goes.

List of candidates

x 8
× 567
× 613
× 2353
- synonym of above
× 138
× 44 - proposed synonym
× 874
× 7 - possibly merge candidate for the above
× 1044
× 64 - possibly merge candidate for the above
× 99
× 47
× 1504
- synonym of above
× 1001
× 2

My proposal

is to create (at least) the following tags and make all some of the above (possibly more) synonyms.

I only picked the ones where I found a tag already. Feel free to edit if you agree with the general direction.

All of them shall get their tag wikis in a similar fashion, to give them a common appearance. Like, all excerpts should start with "SQL clause". Maybe with a brief example query in the tag wiki highlighting the keyword.
can serve as prototype to illustrate that.


Would be done in three steps:

  1. Create the new tags - maybe rename some in existence?
  2. Retag where appropriate.
  3. Make some of the old keywords synonyms - I'd just propose where I see fit, and the community will vote on it. Or we could discuss that here systematically.
    Others will remain as general-purpose tags.

I would like to know how the community feels about this before I proceed.

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closed as off-topic by Martijn Pieters, rene, ProgramFOX, Shadow Wizard, mmyers Jul 11 at 21:58

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I like it. I've felt that without the sql- prefix, the tags are really meta tags (for the most part). I'm all for retagging these, but we can't really use synonyms, we'd have to evaluate them all, because I can see situations where these definitely would be used in other contexts. –  casperOne Jul 28 '12 at 4:03
@casperOne: We probably need to look closely where a synonym makes sense. Many of my examples are used almost exclusively for the SQL key word. Others are not as unambiguous. –  Erwin Brandstetter Jul 28 '12 at 4:06
Maybe, maybe not. We can't make a synonym for partial sets of tags, or only where two tags are applied. It's one-to-one. That said, we can't just carpet bomb the tags, we have to do it on a case-by-case basis, unless we are eliminating, which is not what we want to do here. –  casperOne Jul 28 '12 at 4:17
@casperOne: I added steps to my question, taking your comment into account - if I understood you right. Would it be possible for an admin to mass-retag [groupby] to [sql-group-by], or even just rename the tag - provided we agreed it's the right thing to do (I am not yet convinced it is). –  Erwin Brandstetter Jul 28 '12 at 4:29
select is the deeper rabbit hole. 7k questions. And there's select-statement, mysql-select, subselect, selectall, sql-select, select-query, select-into... select tag wiki ... –  Mat Jul 28 '12 at 4:37
groupby also exists in a non-SQL context in LINQ, Python, and probably other languages. –  Mark Byers Jul 28 '12 at 4:38
@Mat: Yeah, I kind of avoided the big one. but I guess it should be included here. –  Erwin Brandstetter Jul 28 '12 at 4:39
It probably deserves a crusade of its own, given how diversely it is used. –  Mat Jul 28 '12 at 4:42
@MarkByers: So [groupby] has to stay as general tag. Take [order-by] as example. 1504 tags. A candidate for renaming if this plan is generally well received. –  Erwin Brandstetter Jul 28 '12 at 4:45
And there's also insert (although there is already sql-insert, just some manual retagging required) and alter. –  Dukeling Oct 13 '13 at 19:06

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