Why do the following (among others) zombie or orphan tags (i.e. tags with no associated questions) exist on that meta site:

They have been like that for at least two days.

The answer to How can we get rid of misspelled and unused (or “zombie”) tags? suggests those tags should have been auto-deleted.

I hesitate to call this a 'bug', but I find it inexplicable.

By 'exists' I mean that:

  • The tag appears as a suggested auto-completion, when you edit the tags of a question
  • The tag appears in the list of all tags
  • This page displays a message which says,

    The retagging tag has no wiki summary, can you help us create it?

    whereas this other page for example doesn't.

I searched using this word search as well as this tag search and found no instance of the tag, nor of a hyperlink to the tag.

There are many other such tags: e.g. everything on the current page 2 of the popular tags list.

Perhaps they're pre-populated onto the meta site, when the meta site is created? If so, what are they meant to be used for, i.e. could they be pre-populated with a corresponding wiki description? Is there a list or explanation of standard tags if they are standard? For example, what's supposed to be the difference between 'questions', 'asking-questions', and 'allowed-questions'?

I'm asking because I hope to edit/rationalize/regularize the assigning of tags to meta-questions on that site.

  • 2
    You may want to explain that these tags actually exist when searching for tags. A tag that doesn't exist will appear exactly the same as what you have linked. Commented Oct 7, 2014 at 9:58

1 Answer 1


The tags are part of the Make a Meta kit. They are default tags created when the Meta site was created, but have never been used.

See Add a selection of default tags to all metas

IIRC, if you were to briefly use them (add them to a post), then remove them again, they'll be deleted like all other zombie tags.

  • Thank you. Knowing that the list of tags was cloned from "page 1 tags on meta.so" I can manually copy the corresponding tag wiki description.
    – ChrisW
    Commented Oct 7, 2014 at 11:42
  • I tried removing all questions tagged [tagging] on Music Fans Meta, but the tag is not auto-deleted even after 48 hours of having zero questions attached to it. So, are you sure about the last line of your answer? Maybe things have now changed regarding the default+zombie tags cleanup process?
    – user313042
    Commented May 13, 2020 at 10:05
  • @Brahadeesh: I have no idea if that line still applies, this is over 5 years ago now. It could be that this changed or that there is simply a bug. Commented May 15, 2020 at 13:23
  • @MartijnPieters True, things could have just changed.
    – user313042
    Commented May 15, 2020 at 13:25

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