I'm fairly new to EESE so I hope I didn't do something wrong to upset a mod.

Today I had a bit of spare time and wanted to do some "housekeeping" on tag wikis. I edited a fair amount of them (almost all having empty content) and all my edits were accepted.

Until this and this. OK, no problem for a rejection, but I can't understand the motive for the second one: "This edit introduces spam, defaces the post in some way, or is otherwise inappropriate.", especially because it is so different from the rejection reason of the first.

I've a bit of experience on StackOverflow, so I know this kind of reasons are used for quite inappropriate behaviors, but I can't explain what I've done here, besides maybe not meeting the guidelines. I guess on SO it wouldn't have been marked as such, so maybe here on EESE there are other criteria in place.

Am I missing something? Any explanation is welcome, so that I can avoid future mistakes.


1 Answer 1


I have rejected those edits. However, I've typed in the custom reason, and I'm surprised that these cookie cutter reasons got stored. If it was a miss-click on my part, I apologize.

The custom reason I've typed in was along the lines of: "This edit does not cover Fe - iron as element or material, which is used in magnetic cores, among other places. This tag is stretched and/or misused."

For some reason, we have the and as synonyms. Not all of the soldering is done with soldering iron. I'm inclined to break them up. After that, we could write proper tag wikis.

Lorenzo, thank you bringing this forward.


You are trying to add wiki excerpts to tags that are also common English words. These have multiple and very different meanings in engineering. But you are giving only one meaning in the excerpt. Examples:

may apply to soldering iron. It may apply to Fe (the chemical element).
may apply to a LIFO. It may also apply to a protocol stack. TCP/IP stack, for example.
may apply to an electronic tube. It may apply to a general purpose tube/pipe.
may apply to static electricity. It may apply to a static variable.
On the opposite end, and have narrow meanings.

One of the purposes for an excerpt is that a user can read it and decide whether or not the tag would apply to his question. If an excerpt is too narrow, it can be detrimental compared to no excerpt at all. Perhaps, that’s the reason why nobody was creating the excerpts for those tags for a long time.

I would suggest that you don’t edit the excerpts for these common words that have multiple meanings across engineering disciplines. At the same time, the wikis themselves are fair game, because they are not used on-the-fly for determining the applicability of the tag.

Finally, taxonomy systems are never perfect. I guess, this is a preemptive response to Olin’s comment that he doesn’t believe in the tag system here (or something along those lines).

  • \$\begingroup\$ OK, don't worry. Nothing to apologize for! I know you mods are usually overwhelmed with housekeeping. :-) I just feared I did something horribly wrong without being aware. Probably I should have checked if there were synonyms, but I just clicked on the tag to see the questions and they all seemed about soldering-irons. Thanks for the prompt reply. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 5, 2014 at 20:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ @LorenzoDonati You are trying to add wiki excerpts to tags that are also common English words. These have multiple and very different meanings in engineering. But you are giving only one meaning in the excerpt. I have an issue with this. I’ve edited my answer above to give more details. Please have a look. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 5, 2014 at 23:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Ah, ok! Got it now, sorry. Probably I was misled by SO usage. Usually a too broad a tag is not welcomed there and it is burninated quite rapidly if it is used in an ambiguous way. I did not understand that here such broad usage are common practice and more specific tags are not always provided for disambiguation. Thanks for pointing that out! I see I must unlearn some of my SO habits. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 5, 2014 at 23:40
  • \$\begingroup\$ They were grouped long ago by my memory, likely when we still had very few questions. Sorry about that. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kortuk
    Jul 7, 2014 at 5:19
  • \$\begingroup\$ Why reject an excerpt edit simply because it's not all encompassing? If its an empty excerpt, not incorrect, and YOU ARE NOT GOING TO IMPROVE ON IT, DONT REJECT IT. \$\endgroup\$
    – Passerby
    Jul 8, 2014 at 0:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Passerby Why? Because it not sufficiently encompassing. If it's an empty excerpt, then it's not incorrect. If it's an incomplete excerpt, it can be detrimental. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 8, 2014 at 0:32
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Passerby By the way, please don't use all capitals. Even on meta. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 8, 2014 at 0:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ Can be detrimental? Lol. Slippery slope fallacy. It its empty, its useless. \$\endgroup\$
    – Passerby
    Jul 8, 2014 at 3:38

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