In the last couple of weeks, I have proposed three edits to tag wiki excerpts, all of which were rejected for the same reason:

Simply defining what a [tag] is rarely helps those using it unless the tag's name itself is ambiguous. Excerpts should describe why and when a tag should be used. See the help center for more guidance.


  • The tag had no wiki. I proposed

    The tabla is a paired set of drums often used in Hindustani classical music, especially in India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

    This was rejected. Instead, we now have:

    For questions about or directly related to the Tabla.

  • was defined as a

    17th century composer of the classical era

    which I suggested to change to

    Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) was an Austrian composer of the classical era.

    which was rejected. Mozart again is a "17th century" composer.

  • Finally, I added the birth and death years of , which was also rejected.

To be honest, I fail to see the reason for rejecting these edits. After my edit was rejected, the wiki excerpt was empty - even if my proposal was not perfect, how is an empty excerpt better than what I proposed? And honestly, how is the current tag wiki excerpt better than what I had proposed? (Note that the questions tagged indeed refer to the Indian instrument, not the Egyptian one that is also sometimes referred to as a "tabla".) Poor Mr. Mozart is again relegated to the 17th century, which must come as a great surprise to music lovers all over the world, regardless of whether the tag refers to Mozart père or Mozart fils, both of which lived squarely in the 18th century. (All questions refer to Wolfgang Amadeus.)

I have not been overly active at Music.SE, but I am somewhat active at other SE sites, and I have edited my fair share of tags elsewhere. I have not seen this amount of rejected tag wiki edits at other sites. I fully agree that my edits could have been more useful - but why reject even small improvements? It's not like a trivial edit of a question or answer, which would bump it up on the landing page and add noise. Is there a fear that I might stealthily climb the reputation ladder, +2 rep at a time, without "real" contributions to the site? At other parts of SE, even small housecleaning edits are appreciated.

I would like to propose, for discussion, that the standards for accepting proposed tag edits be loosened a bit. Better to have a small improvement that is not perfect than an actively misleading Mozart-in-the-17th-century tag wiki. What say you?

  • 1
    Tag excerpt are for explaining when people should use the tag, not giving people information about the subject which is why the suggestions were rejected. There is a tag wiki specifically for that purpose. We do need to clean up the tags wikis and excepts the site, but honestly these edits are not the correct direction for improving the excerpts.
    – Dom Mod
    Commented Oct 9, 2016 at 15:45
  • @Dom: yes, I have read that explanation. I just don't understand why a small improvement in a tag wiki excerpt would be rejected based on this. Is it really better to have no excerpt at all, or a factually incorrect one, rather than a better, if not perfect one? Commented Oct 9, 2016 at 15:50
  • yes because it signifies it needs improvement and those suggestions espically for that of the tabla would most likely need to be completely reworked to make sense as excerpts so the intermediate edit makes no sense.
    – Dom Mod
    Commented Oct 9, 2016 at 16:02

1 Answer 1


Beyond the explicit reason given, and Dom's comments: Three edits isn't very much, but one reason this is discouraged is because it's a waste of reviewers' time. They shouldn't be deciding the merits of excerpts that don't meet the guidelines.

It should actually be easier to give a quick line of tag use guidance than to give a good definition. If you feel you are unequipped to do so, you should consider participating more in other ways in order to become familiar with the site.

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