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Starting a few minutes ago, questions tagged "etymology" are highlighted in blue when I visit

Yes, I did find the question "Why do some questions in question lists have a yellow background?", but I haven't favourited the "etymology" tag, and I haven't asked or answered any questions with that tag. Is this a bug?

EDIT: The hightlighting just disappeared all by itself. Nevertheless, I won't delete the question yet in case the phenomenon returns.

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While you might not be a top user, you've probably answered more questions with this tag than others and so the system flags it as "interesting" to you. – ChrisF Jun 25 '11 at 10:18
@ChrisF: Thanks for your comment. Actually, I haven't answered any questions tagged "etymology". I have edited my question accordingly. (I didn't know the system would patronize me in this way you describe!) – Hendrik Vogt Jun 25 '11 at 10:29
In the case that you don't have explicit tag preferences, we do try to infer some implicit favorite tags, based on activity. I don't know the exact rules for that, hence not adding as an answer... – Marc Gravell Jun 25 '11 at 10:44
@Marc: So far I was lucky enough not to get any highlighting based on activity, unless this half-hour intermezzo counts. I would find it annoying to get such implicit favorites (which why I wrote "patronize" above). But maybe it only kicks in if your activity is heavily biased - and mine isn't; then it would be OK. If you find a reference to more detail, please let me know! – Hendrik Vogt Jun 25 '11 at 10:50
@Hans: Huh, is this the same phenomenon? – Hendrik Vogt Jun 25 '11 at 13:25
I'll write it up in German next time. – Uphill Luge Jun 25 '11 at 13:28
up vote 4 down vote accepted

Marc notes in a comment that you can have implicit "frequented" tags. These appear to be triggered by visiting a lot of questions with the tag in a relative period of time, and you don't currently have any preferences on that site. I triggered it long ago on Gaming while cleaning shop, which led to this feature request.

These are temporary and will go away in due time, it seems - mine went away without me moving my view bias anywhere. But it is possible for it to return if you spend a lot of time on a single tag again. Like Marc, I'm not knowing of the exact rules, but this is still more an answer than a comment.

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Thanks a lot for this answer, in particular for the link to your feature-request. I had seen that request, but only a vague feeling of its existence remained, and I couldn't find it again. EDIT: Ah, I see the answer to your feature-request even offers a workaround. Great! – Hendrik Vogt Jun 25 '11 at 12:28
Let me point out that I don't have the slightest idea how the system could think I visit "etymology" tagged questions frequently. I just visit all the questions on, and that's it. (@Grace: I don't expect you to help me out here :-)) – Hendrik Vogt Jun 25 '11 at 12:33
@Hendrik See this link for Jeff's formula explanation from six months ago. – Troyen Jun 25 '11 at 13:53
@Troyen: Ah, great link, thanks. (Although with the number X,Y,Z given there, I can't explain what happened.) – Hendrik Vogt Jun 25 '11 at 14:22

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