This clearly seems like a meta-tag, and worse, it validates recipe request questions like this one which was just posted.

Would it be a bad thing if I went on a retagging rampage? Once the tag doesn't exist anymore, can it somehow be prevented from being recreated?

1 Answer 1


Well, as the tag wiki excerpt says:

Helper tag for finding questions that need to be closed. Read the FAQ for more details.

In our heyday we had a lot of terrible, terrible tags; including some that dominated the entire site like [technique] and [cooking-techniques]. We've successfully purged those and made major dents in several other clunkers like and , but there are still many more that remain.

is one that we've never given a whole lot of priority to because most questions with that tag should be closed and/or deleted rather than simply retagged. And the question count is low (compared to some of the aforementioned tags in the past).

Unfortunately, like all bad tags, it sits there festering in the system and people continue to use it despite the "DON'T USE THIS" tag wiki.

Please do get rid of the tag for questions that are actually salvageable; for questions that are in fact recipe requests, just vote to close (or flag, for those without the necessary reputation). We (the moderators) will happily finish the job for any obvious recipe requests. Please don't bump those questions with retags; we want them to quietly die and be forgotten, not be revived.

Standard disclaimers apply about retagging too many questions at once. Try not to do more than 5-10 a day and be mindful of other people doing the same thing.

  • Even I forgot to check the tag wiki - I bet people who don't read the FAQ won't ever check it. I'll try and do a bit of a slow retagging project! Thanks!
    – Cascabel Mod
    Jan 23, 2012 at 6:00
  • @Jefromi: Yeah, it's pretty sad how few people bother to look, even after they added the tooltips to tags and the new tagging UI which displays the excerpt right there. But as I've often said in the various chatrooms and metas, awful tags are more often than not the sign of an awful question, which more often than not is the sign of a user who can't/won't contribute much of value. Best we can do is to rescue the ones we can and gently turn away the rest.
    – Aaronut
    Jan 23, 2012 at 15:15
  • How would you retag questions like these? (Note that some only have the tag [recipe] and no other, just deleting the tag will make the questions tagless.) cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/16293/… cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/13922/… cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/10270/… (Not that they are excellent questions, but they're not closed either)
    – Mien
    Jan 24, 2012 at 13:24
  • 1
    @Mien: First one should be closed as off-topic IMO (legal questions are bad news); second one maybe [basics], third one closed as a duplicate of How does one find recipes given an ingredient rather than the recipe name?
    – Aaronut
    Jan 24, 2012 at 15:11
  • You want me to flag those two?
    – Mien
    Jan 24, 2012 at 15:16
  • @Mien: I would, yes. (Thought you had close votes by now...)
    – Aaronut
    Jan 24, 2012 at 15:21

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