which tag should we use [bbq] or [barbecue] -currently there are 3 of each 9 for [barbecue] and 11 for [bbq] with no overlap.

or something else entirely?

  • Can you define what the two tags mean to you, please? An English barbecue means something very different from southern (american) bbq.
    – yossarian
    Jul 27, 2010 at 16:55

3 Answers 3


I would vote [barbecue], but I don't really see the harm in both. Perhaps in a few days tag usage will decide.

  • 1
    I think that the community needs to keep the number of tags down to a minimum. On Stack Overflow my list of ignored tags is now so long it is usually longer than the list of questions. This is usually from duplicate tags (for example windows, windows-vista, windows-7 etc.). We need to currate the tags as best as possibl;e to make best use of the system. My vote is however for barbecue.
    – Ian Turner
    Jul 28, 2010 at 15:27
  • Agreed. bbq is just an abbreviation for barbecue. I propose we don't attempt to try to define which barbecue we're referring to in the context of a tag (for now anyway). That's an entirely separate issue unto itself.
    – hobodave
    Aug 11, 2010 at 9:54

I vote to keep them both. Southern style slow and low smoking and the accompanying sauces is more often referred to as bbq than barbecue (although both are used). Barbecue in the English sense would be referred to as grilling in the US. Seems to me that people would be highly likely to use both tags. If we removed one, wouldn't it just keep getting created, or does stack exchange have a mechanism to deal with that?

  • once we are out of beta only certain reputation users will be able to create tags
    – Sam Holder
    Jul 27, 2010 at 17:05
  • @Sam Holder, does that mean that the amount of rep needed will rise to create tags? It's currently only at 150, which really only requires one good answer to achieve. But I see on Stack Overflow, you need 1500. Does the barrier increase when we come out of beta?
    – yossarian
    Jul 27, 2010 at 18:20
  • yes it will. the barriers for most things wil increase at the end of the beta. I assume they will go to the same as SO
    – Sam Holder
    Jul 27, 2010 at 20:31
  • Does that mean that users who can now create tags will not be anymore able to create new tags, at the end of the beta?
    – apaderno
    Jul 29, 2010 at 15:06
  • Sorry for the downvote. The problem with keeping both separately is that most people, except for a few die-hards or people from intense bbq/barbecue regions (I don't even know which is which) use these terms interchangeably. Now ignorance is a bad basis for any policy, except maybe tags, which require users to understand the terms they are applying. Vote to merge as synonyms.
    – Ocaasi
    Aug 11, 2010 at 0:09
  • I'm from the south and I never used the term "bbq" except as shorthand for "barbecue". BBQ doesn't carry any special southern meaning. It's just convenient.
    – hobodave
    Aug 11, 2010 at 9:52
  • @hobodave, I'm from the south too (actually, I'm English, but I've lived in Atlanta for 21 years) and I disagree. But whatever, I don't really care. If I'd known about synonyms when I posted, my answer would have been different. This is my first exposure to a stack exchange site, although I was familiar with the idea from Joel's blog, so I'm still learning.
    – yossarian
    Aug 11, 2010 at 13:54

I'm going to argue that there's a need for at least two categories, even when simply speaking in the American sense:

  1. For the process. Should be a verb such as [barbecuing].
  2. For the end-product. Should be a noun, such as [barbecue].

Personally, I hate the term 'BBQ'. Most likely because it reminds me of the year when I lived in the deep south. (note to others -- when you're in 5th grade, and you're accused of being a 'northerner', it doesn't help to try to explain that you're from Maryland, which is south of the Mason-Dixon line).

I believe there may be a need to differentiate between the equipment as well (grill, barbeque, whatever you want to call it). If the term BBQ is always used to refer to the end product of barbecuing, we could always that to differentiate between the food and the equipment used to produce it.

How we're going to deal with synonyms, when 'grilling' means something different in Aus., I have no clue without qualifying the tags somehow.

update : We could use a plural noun for the equipment, but then we have the whole question of the event as a whole, which could be plural as well.

  • Funny story Joe. We already have grilling, smoking, outdoor-cooking, and slow-cooking. Is barbecuing distinct from these? I do like the distinction between process and product, but, we still don't have an answer for whether the product is barbecue or bbq.
    – Ocaasi
    Aug 11, 2010 at 0:13

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