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This only happens on some questions and is really confusing. Why is this happening?

migrated from meta.superuser.com Jul 4 '12 at 6:30

This question came from our discussion, support, and feature requests site for computer enthusiasts and power users.

  • 3
    AFAICT, all affected questions have been asked May 2010 or earlier, and haven't had their tags edited since. I assume it is related to relevance ordering of tags (e.g. first tag used for page title), and before that, it wasn't done for the tag text entered by the user, and only afterwards, creating the discrepancy between what's shown and what is stored internally (and displayed for editing). – Daniel Beck Jul 2 '12 at 5:23
  • @DanielBeck: I had a feeling age had something to do with it. Interesting. – Der Hochstapler Jul 2 '12 at 9:30
  • I was able to reproduce this here on Meta in an old question - just click "edit tags" and see for yourself. – Shadow The Curly Braced Wizard Jul 4 '12 at 7:10

The "edit tags" button is only a shortcut for the normal edit interface--thus it orders the tags in the same way.

The tags section of the question editor holds the tags in the order they were inputted (i.e., how the tags are stored in the database). So, if you move a tag around in the edit interface, the next time you edit it this "moving around" is reflected

On the other hand, the tags on the displayed post are ordered by some algorithm ((probably looks at the number of questions in the tag). The algorithm orders by the number of questions in the tag, with the exception that on metas, the required tags always come first, followed by the red moderator tags.

For example, on SU, the tag has more questions/followers than the others, and is displayed first. But the user must've entered first in the editor.

Yes, it's confusing when you use the 10k inline editor, but fixing this IMO won't be much but a small cosmetic change.

  • 1
    "probably looks at the number of questions in the tag" -- precisely that, with the addition that on metas, required tags (bug, discussion, etc.) and moderator tags (status-*, featured, etc.) are moved to the front. – balpha Jul 4 '12 at 8:55
  • @balpha: Thanks, added :) – Manishearth Jul 4 '12 at 9:03
  • And, I assume, with newer questions, the tags are already stored sorted from the time they were posted? – Der Hochstapler Jul 4 '12 at 10:11
  • @oliver nope. The tags are stored in the order they were inputted (i.e. the order shown before you click save) – Manishearth Jul 4 '12 at 10:16

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