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I'm sure most of you have seen some variation of "DO NOT USE THIS TAG" on certain tag excerpts.

What exactly is the guidelines for adding this text (when should it be added, who should add it)?


Can I add it to the tag, for example, since we have a burninate request currently at +9?

Can I add it to the , , etc. tags (related +30 question)?

(Please don't take your disagreement on these examples out on me (through downvotes), rather go to the above questions - this question is about general guidelines, these examples are just ... examples)

  • Doesn't it also require a retag of all those questions first?. I just looked at api... that is a lot of retaggig even with the script of wont – rene Jan 21 '14 at 8:43
  • @rene Just adding "DO NOT USE THIS TAG" might prevent some of the new occurrences of the tag, making it easier to burninate the tag (I've certainly seen the text on a few tags with a lot of questions). If it should only be added after burninating the tag, that's certainly worth noting (and a valid answer to this question). – Dukeling Jan 21 '14 at 8:45
  • Maybe we should provide the call-to-action as an answer. So the answer says: In 7 days I will add 'DO NOT USE THIS TAG' to the tag wiki excerpt AND use the script of wont (or use a SEDE query, or your idea here) to retag the existing questions. The upvotes/downvotes on that answer will indicate agreement. After 7 days you act accordingly, and if needed organize a team to spread the load. – rene Jan 21 '14 at 8:48
  • @rene People already up/downvote a burninate request based on agreement, so can't adding this text be implied with posting such a request (perhaps it should be done when the post reaches +X, possibly also if at least Y time has passed)? (Does there need to be a separate answer?) – Dukeling Jan 21 '14 at 12:59
  • Well to be honest, if I visit unanswered questions here specially the burninate ones I always wonder, is it done? Should I jump in and start retagging? If you and others have a clear picture on the process it is fine but I'm in the blind at the moment. The open question with no answer might give others the same impression and in the end nobody takes action (at least that is my view, and I hope I'm wrong :-) ) – rene Jan 21 '14 at 13:12
  • I'm biased due to the way I handled this question and this one and to be clear: It is NOT for the rep. Maybe clearer if the OP answers his own question. – rene Jan 21 '14 at 13:17
  • @rene I absolutely support an answer saying "This has been done" and/or a status-completed tag (which can probably be obtained with a custom flag). But an answer before it's been done seems superfluous. (If you went to the trouble of retagging a bunch of questions, or even just checking if it still exists, I don't see anything wrong with getting a bit of rep out of it, or, if you feel you didn't do enough, you can always make the answer community wiki) – Dukeling Jan 21 '14 at 13:59
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There is no guideline.

"Do not use this tag" is something the community made up to deal with tags that should not be used, but cannot be fully removed for some reason. It doesn't really work, for the most part; people use the tag anyway, despite the warning.

Tag problems are caused by people who don't understand how tags work. It's not completely their fault; tag norms are very site-specific. I frequently find myself wondering how to tag things properly every time I encounter a new SE site.


Editor's note: Some sites, such as Super User, have formalized tag cleanup processes, e.g. by adding to tag burninate requests. In such cases, it may be considered OK by the community to add that to the tag. However, not all sites support this. Check with the local community before doing so.

  • "It doesn't really work, for the most part; people use the tag anyway, despite the warning." - I know this all too well, but I'm hoping it at least makes some difference. I just kind of want to know when it will be 'acceptable' to add this to the excerpt (I guess it would be when the burninate request is 'significantly' upvoted, but I wouldn't know what 'significantly' is). Since we don't just want people to add this to excerpts left, right and centre, perhaps we should get a somewhat official guideline. – Dukeling Jan 21 '14 at 19:00
  • It's acceptable when you can get community consensus that the tag doesn't really belong (without getting into a Tag Wiki edit war). There's no hard and fast rule. – Robert Harvey Jan 21 '14 at 19:02
  • People use tags despite warnings not to in the tag wikis, because the default behaviour when adding tags is just to show tag suggestions and not the wikis that go with them. You have to actually hover over a tag once it's in place to see the wiki. – RobH Jan 21 '14 at 20:11
  • @RobH Well, when you're busy typing it, it shows up, but it is still fairly easy to miss. I did propose it be made permanent while editing at some point. – Dukeling Jan 21 '14 at 20:34
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Answer from here:

The StackExchange Developer Staff are the only ones who have the ability to blacklist tags.

In the same time, it requires only 5000 rep to accept tag wiki edits. So the DO NOT USE tag excerpts are the way the community deals with tags that they think should be not used, when the blacklist request is pending.

This is simply something we can do ourself. Even if staff thinks the situation isn't serious enough to justify the big guns of blacklisting.

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