The tag wiki is an important part of the information architecture of a SE site. It provides a dimension of navigation, and makes information about a specific topic findable by searching for the tag.

I've noticed several instances if unilateral and arbitrary retagging of this site, all of them carried out by the same individual, who is also a diamond moderator. This pattern of misbehavior was visible from the start. I even mentioned it in my pre-election objections to this person becoming a mod.

As an example of this type of mis-behavior, take for example edit 2 of this one, where the tag "licensing" is removed and a new tag, "interactive-environments", is created.

The "licensing" tag has the following summary:

Licensing refers to applying a license to an area of software. Only use this tag if your question concerns the application of a license to an area of interest.

As it happens, the question is specifically about the application of the GNU GPL to a derivative work in an interpreted language. I cannot see that applying the "licensing" tag was wrong enough to warrant its removal.

Even stranger is the creation of the tag "interactive-environments" for this particular question. As far as I am able to tell the question has nothing do do with interactive environments. For instance. one the main applications for one of the interpreted languages mentioned, Python, is implementation of internet crawlers, FTP, IMAP, and very many other Internet protocols. These are applications that are typically used in non-interactive environments.

Assuming this is not malicious, the only explanation for this behavior must be that the diamond moderator in questions is lacking in knowledge about computer science fundamentals that matches his/her ignorance about free software and open source licensing. This need not be a problem, but when such ignorance is paired with a lack of self-restraint, it becomes a problem.

I know this is an unusual feature request, but: What I suggest is that the right to retag and to create tags is taken away from this particular diamond moderator at least for some time, in the hope of getting this person to show more restraint in creating and changing tags.

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    I'm guessing the mod finds "licensing" too generic. The question retains the "copyleft" tag. I'd rather have this as a discussion than a feature-request; it's best if we hear the mod's reasoning first. Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 7:21
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    It's not actually possible to take privileges away from someone, as far as I'm aware, except through bans - and there isn't a tagging ban we can apply.
    – ArtOfCode
    Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 10:17
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    @ArtOfCode - I know. The feature request is that SE introduces such a possibility. Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 10:37

2 Answers 2


On this particular example

I've rolled the edit back.

The tag was on the fence there: it's valid to think either it should be there or it shouldn't. Since that's the case, side with the OP and use the tag they added.

Bad tag edits in general

If you see a bad tag edit, do something about it. If you're over 1k rep, you can freely edit - roll the edit back, or edit again.

If it then becomes an edit war, disengage. Raise a custom flag explaining that an edit war is going on and state and explain your point of view. Moderators will not handle flags about themselves, so if it's about a moderator you can be sure that another will handle it.

On the feature-request

Taking privileges away from someone is not an action available to us moderators, and I'm not even sure that SE employees can do it. Bans are the accepted way of preventing problem behaviors, but we don't have a tagging ban. , but I'll have a word with the moderator in question in our chat, and work it out there.


Wow. Are you for real?

I've noticed several instances if unilateral and arbitrary retagging

Retagging is unilateral by definition, unless it's done via a suggested edit. Arbitrary is an accusation against the retagger's motives for which you state no justification altogether.

As an example of this type of mis-behavior

(and more similar language)

What mis-behavior? It's a retag that you don't agree with. There is no misbehavior here except your violation of one of the fundamental rules of this site:

Be nice.

Seriously, if you think a retag deserves such vitriolic language, take a break.

knowledge about computer science fundamentals that matches his/her ignorance about free software and open source licensing

Given that absolutely no computer science is involved here, you're one to talk.

If you disagree with a retag, discussing on meta is the right place. But your tone is completely out of place. There's a constructive way, and calling for someone's head isn't.

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    "take a break". Thank you for this advice - I am going to take it. While I want to promote free software development and free culture, I am getting increasingly frustrated with the lack of quality of the Q&A, as well as the lack of consistency in management, of this site. So my time is probably better spent elsewhere. Goodbye. Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 13:55

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