I spent some time this evening going through the tags on SuperUser, and considering the wider audience it attracts, which are much more inexperienced the ability to edit tags gets abused quickly. This could also be due to the lack of understanding of what tags are altogether.

Keeping the tags on SuperUser consistent is also made harder by the wider topic range. Therefore we quickly end up with duplicate tags being added to a question, or even have users putting spaces in tags not realizing it creates separate tags.

Looking at the tags list the last 10 pages are tags which has been removed but are still available for selection. It is going to take some time to clean this up, and with users adding new one's the minute they get tag editing rights, it seems to be a endless exercise.

I would suggest the limit gets increased to at least 2000 if not higher.

  • Looking at your "recent" page, I take it you were watching soccer... Good game, but we kicked your butts :-)
    – balpha
    Sep 5, 2009 at 21:17
  • Actually I wasn't :) But thanks for the update!
    – Diago
    Sep 5, 2009 at 21:24
  • So you want less than half a percent of users to be able to create tags? That seems far too small a percentage, to me.
    – Rowland Shaw
    Sep 5, 2009 at 21:31
  • 3
    @Rowland - At the moment yes. But that is changing quickly. The problem is the audience itself compared to SO and SF. Here we are dealing with anyone that has a computer software problem hitting SU at some point. This is awesome in it's own, but a problem when dealing with tags.
    – Diago
    Sep 5, 2009 at 21:34

2 Answers 2


I would assume that this is a problem with the amount of rep required to create badges, and less so about retagging. Do you have access to statistics which of those tags where created during question posting and which ones during retagging?

Based on my assumption, I'd rather suggest raising the "create tag" rep border to 500—I think that consistent, as you trust people to "mess with the tags" either way, whether through retagging or through tag creation.

Also, according to Pesto here, unused tags do in fact get removed—so what is true now?

  • Actually no - I am specificly referring to the ability to retag. The tags gets fixed, and a day later someone has gone and edited it, and you can generally see they have just gotten their edit tags ability. Whether tags are new or existing they feel it necessary to retag everything they see.
    – Diago
    Sep 5, 2009 at 21:26
  • 2
    Okay, understood. Either way... something has to be done. That's the point where I'd like to point to my "You have gained power" suggestion. Although especially on SU, something more than that might be in order...
    – balpha
    Sep 5, 2009 at 21:30
  • "required to create badges" You mean tags?
    – Gelatin
    Jul 29, 2010 at 17:02

Is it not an idea to inform users on how tags work and what importance they have? I'd say that raising the limits will only move the problem. As long as users don't get why they're creating tags anyway and how important uniformity is, I don't think it's going to work... As we say in the Netherlands, it'll be "mopping the floor while leaving the tap open".

I don't disagree with the limit increase though, especially not for tag creation.

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