It seems people are using to specify broken links, but not within posts as the info/excerpt says.

Tag Info

For discussing the effects of broken links within posts and comments across the network, what to do with them, and how we can prevent them from becoming broken.


What should we do?

Either we should expand the scope of the or we should remove the tag from those questions where it is used inappropriately.

People may be using them as some of the help center articles are technically posts, but this is not the case:

  1. Some of the questions are not just about the help center, e.g. chat.
  2. There is the tag that is/was used for system content like the help center.
  3. There are more or less suitable choose-on-context alternatives that make more sense, e.g., .
  • 4
    Technically, Help Center articles are posts (but only staff can edit them) ...
    – Glorfindel Mod
    Commented Nov 9, 2021 at 9:51
  • 9
    Personally, I don't mind expanding the scope of the tag. But I'd like to hear the community's opinion on this.
    – Glorfindel Mod
    Commented Nov 9, 2021 at 9:58
  • 1
    Looks like the original idea was to use 404-not-found for broken links in 'system content' like the Help Center.
    – Glorfindel Mod
    Commented Nov 9, 2021 at 10:45
  • @Glorfindel so remove the tags from the questions and add to the excerpt: this is only for user-posts/comments, for system issues use 404-not-found instead OR make a new tag [system-broken-links]? Yet wait for other opinions. Commented Nov 9, 2021 at 11:03
  • 1
    broken-link might be more intuitively understandable than a computer slang term like link-rot. Also a link might already be broken at the time of posting, it does not need to rot to become broken. Commented Nov 9, 2021 at 12:57

2 Answers 2


We've got a few situations where we need to get help to fix things when a broad set of very useful links move or go away. This might involve bots or community clean up. Some of these might affect the network broadly. Here's a great modern example. When links broadly break, seems a correct call.

I think the custom 404's whether or not we keep them should keep the - Especially for things like this . I would prefer broken links on the network to have the .

Between and , I'm leaning towards broken link - it talks about the immediate problem, not the slow gnawing embrace of entropy that will take us all.

As such I feel we should use for questions pertaining to broken links across the network, and the tag for 404 pages custom or otherwise on the network, especially when it pertains to the 'custom' closure pages where applicable.


I don't think there is all that much need to distinguish between user generated content, and content provided by the site itself when considering how to tag a question regarding a broken link.

For example if there is a broken link in a help center page we could use the tags: .

I think this is the intuitive thing to do under these circumstances.

If a broken link appears elsewhere, there are plenty of other tags we could use to indicate that it is in system generated content. For example for something in the review queue's or for something on a users' profile.

Therefore I suggest we make a synonym of and adjust the tag wiki and excerpt accordingly.

As Journeyman kindly pointed out in the comments we still have a legitimate use for , namely the custom 404 pages the network has. Therefore making the tag a synonym of is not the right solution.

We should rather narrow the scope of the to be specifically about the (custom) 404 pages the network serves, and re-tag questions about broken links to .

I'd imagine the excerpt for would become something along the lines of:

Use this tag when you want to report a broken link in content that can't be edited by users, or to discuss the effects of broken links within posts and comments across the network, what to do with them, and how we can prevent them from becoming broken.

And the excerpt for would become something along the lines of:

For discussing or reporting bugs with the (custom) 404-error pages of the network itself.

improvements are welcomed

  • 1
    @VScode_fanboy there is no need to report broken links in users' posts, as there is an edit button for that. The only time something like that is useful is when a massively linked resource goes out, for example what happened here: meta.stackoverflow.com/questions/367314/…
    – Luuklag
    Commented Nov 12, 2021 at 8:49
  • I think my proposed description makes clear that you should only report broken links that can't be edited by users, which is besides the contents of the site only locked posts I think. So that should be sufficient. I'm happy to hear others' opinion on this and reconsider if needed.
    – Luuklag
    Commented Nov 12, 2021 at 9:25
  • We still do have 'custom' 404s on some sites I think, and those 404s would be appropriate for the tag. I think the problem is they're both very meta tags Commented Nov 12, 2021 at 12:13
  • Ah that is a part I've missed @JourneymanGeek. That would advocate for retaggingand not synonymisation.
    – Luuklag
    Commented Nov 12, 2021 at 12:22
  • meta.stackexchange.com/questions/371708/… - I believe you've considered this. Commented Nov 14, 2021 at 4:35

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