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I think it would help spur more niche activity if there were more niche tag badges.

Tag badges could be created based on some criteria, like 1000 questions or 1000 answers or something that would require at least some level of activity.

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3 Answers 3

up vote 12 down vote accepted

This already happens. Earn 400 upvotes for any tag, and you will be awarded a silver badge for that tag, even if the badge doesn't exist yet. Earn 1000 upvotes and you will be awarded a gold badge.

1000 questions or 1000 answers alone isn't good enough, because that would give you the ability to award the badge to yourself and in effect encourage you to spam those tags. Using votes puts at least some emphasis on quality as well.

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How did I miss that? That's even better than my idea (although I like having different levels) –  TheTXI Jul 22 '09 at 14:47
    
Thanks for the info, there should probably be an explanation of this on the tag-badges page. –  Lance Roberts Jul 22 '09 at 14:50
    
@Lance - there is. See the Legend on the tag page - stackoverflow.com/badges?tab=tags –  ChrisF Jul 22 '09 at 14:54
    
How did I miss seeing that there are two tabs on the badges page? I'd been wondering where all the tag badges went! –  mmyers Jul 22 '09 at 15:55

I believe tag badges are already automatically created once someone has reached 400 upvotes in a given tag. I'm trying to dig up a reference to back this up, but I'm certain that's the case...

EDIT: Here's the reference:

http://blog.stackoverflow.com/2009/02/specialist-badge-implemented/

Scroll halfway down for Jeff's post:

Jeff Atwood says: February 17th, 2009 at 11:06 am

Ruby doesn’t get a badge? No fair.

Any tag gets a badge dynamically created when it reaches the threshold of 400 by at least one user.

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I wonder if it would be useful for Jeff and the team to develop an automatic tag badge system that would create a new badge when certain tags go over a certain question threshold (100 questions would create a bronze badge category, 500 would create a silver badge category, and 1000 would create the gold level category).

Edit Disregard this. Apparently they already give the badges automatically (even if a badge doesn't exist yet) if you score enough upvotes.

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you haven't actually ever used Stack Overflow, have you? –  Jeff Atwood Jul 23 '09 at 1:59
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Jeff Atwood: Funnily enough the same day I say this I automatically get awarded a "Discussion" badge. –  TheTXI Jul 23 '09 at 11:06

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