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We're having a disussion on Outdoors.se at the moment about what to do with some tags. No one really seems to have a definitive answer.


A good example of the issue we're having are the tags and . These basically mean the same thing, using a rope to descend over an obstacle. In rock climbing the words are used interchangeably but often countries use one more than the other (US use rappelling, most European countries use abseiling).

I'm concerned that someone (for example) in the US may not know the term abseiling (especially if they are a beginner) or vice versa and this could become confusing for people looking at what to tag their questions with.

NB The words themselves come from German (Abseil) and French (Rappel) but are generally accepted adopted English words (there is no true English word for this activity).


So does anyone have any thoughts on what we should do about these tags? Seems a number of options in the system (non-of which quite fit):

  • Merge them
  • Synonyms
  • Leave them as two tags

To clarify, I think part of the issue is that a user has asked for them to be merged.

My understanding of them merging is that one of them then disappears and cannot be used. Doesn't this confuse users who want a rappelling tag but can't find one?

Can we have synonyms that aren't merged?

Is merging even an issue?

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Make them synonyms - use the most popular as the main one (I agree this may be hard to decide on, but ask the community on meta).

Then, when someone types in the other one, the system will say, underneath the main one also: [other tag] - this tells the user that they are related.

To remove any doubt, in the excerpt, start with AKA [other tag] in [country].

eg:

enter image description here

  • This makes sense, I think part of the issue is that a user has asked for them to be merged. My understanding of them merging is that one of them then disappears and cannot be used. Can we have synonyms that aren't merged? Is merging even an issue? – Liam Aug 19 '15 at 9:34
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    @Liam see What are tag synonyms? How do they work? – gnat Aug 19 '15 at 9:38
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    so (for clarity and to confirm that I'm reading this correctly). They should be flagged as synonyms but not merged/burinated or any other action? – Liam Aug 19 '15 at 9:42
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    @Liam that's correct - you vote for the synonym if you have enough rep/points in that tag. – ᔕᖺᘎᕊ Aug 19 '15 at 9:42
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    Thanks guys. Very helpful – Liam Aug 19 '15 at 9:43
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We had a similar discussion about two GIS tags for Voronoi and Thiessen.

Voronoi vs Thiessen vs Delaunay Triangulation - one or more tags?

The pragmatic decision we came to was to create a concatenated tag of voronoi-thiessen because neither made a clear master tag to the other. We made the individual tags synonyms of that concatenated tag.

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