Can we change the wording of the description for "excerpt not helpful"/"wiki not helpful" in the rejection reason list for suggested edits from:

"This edit does not follow any of our tag wiki guidelines…"


"This edit does not follow our tag wiki guidelines…"


"This edit does not follow all of our tag wiki guidelines…"

The any of is rather jarring and has a you did nothing right feel to it, which is not usually the case. Removing any of sounds friendlier and more accurately describes most situations (where the wiki edit is just missing one or two things).

  • One quibble is that a "mostly right" edit should be improved with "helpful" probably checked, and not rejected. But I agree very much that most edits are not 100% wrong and the wording should be changed.
    – user154510
    Jul 12 '12 at 21:17
  • @MatthewRead I don't have the option to improve for tag wiki/excerpts. Must be a 10k+ thing. Jul 12 '12 at 21:19
  • 1
    much better copy
    – Ben Brocka
    Jul 13 '12 at 2:08

I agree. Saying "you did it wrong" without guidance isn't really all that helpful. So finally, after a year of manually typing in exactly why the wiki/excerpt was not helpful, I submitted some changes to the devs for consideration. The two most common reasons I outlined where:

excerpt lacks usage guidance
Simply defining what a [tag] is does not make for a good wiki excerpt. Excerpts should describe why and when a tag would be used. See Writing tag wiki excerpts

The other suggestion was an update to the 'copied content' guidance:

copied content
We prefer not to simply copy content wholesale. Try to creating something more useful to this site specifically, and be sure to attribute the original author. See: How to reference material written by others

This^ one covers a bigger problem than bulk copying content for tag wikis, but I felt this change to the "copied content" guidance in general would help improve our content overall.

  • Reading that first one, I have to wonder; are the Tag Wiki Rejection Reasons network-wide? If so, that first one seems like a step backwards for, say, Gaming.SE. We don't need any explanation of when to use almost any tag, because we almost always use the specific game a question is about as a tag, and I expect that Anime & Manga, Movies & TV, Science Fiction & Fantasy, and Role-Playing Games similarly won't need usage guidance on any of their franchise-specific tags. Having an entire reject reason about usage guidance seems likely to confuse new reviewers who may not realize it doesn't apply. Jan 30 '14 at 21:44
  • Well, that kinda raises the question, @Billy: if the purpose of a tag is obvious from the name, do you really need a wiki excerpt?
    – Shog9
    Jan 30 '14 at 22:25
  • @Shog9 In the Arqade case, at least, the purpose of the tag is really only entirely obvious from the name if you can remember exactly which game that name corresponds to, right down to which game in a series each number refers to, and you remember all that every time. Providing some info like release year, developer, genre, and a short description certainly helps make sure someone's using the tag. But it's not really a description of "why and when a tag would be used". Jan 30 '14 at 23:28
  • Sounds like you're clarifying when/why the tag should be used to me, @Billy. Note that the linked blog post has a much more extensive list of guidelines for writing excerpts, but "when/why" is a pretty good rule of thumb - and it's simple enough that hopefully folks who're prone to writing "Tag X: for questions about X" will be able to grasp it without having to read 500 words first.
    – Shog9
    Jan 30 '14 at 23:33

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