From the list of feature changes:

2011-02-09: Migration now does tag checks. During migration, tags will be checked (and replaced if found) for tag synonyms on the destination site. Tags that do not exist on the destination site will be stripped from the question. If the previous steps leave a question with no remaining tags, it will be closed as off-topic on the original site and not migrated.

Most questions we receive are only tagged with , and we don't have that tag. Does that mean that migrated questions form SO or SU will now never arrive here?

3 Answers 3


I do think this is a valid concern. There are some sites in the network where a tag could apply to all questions on the site. This needs to be taken into account when considering migrations. This means that a question could be migrated here without any tags, but having an untagged question is better than not having the question.

  • 3
    I'm not convinced by your last sentence. I'd like to see some statistics on how migrated questions have fared across the whole system to know that it's worth migrating rather than just "close-and-suggest-posting-elsewhere". For example: if a question has been migrated and the original poster was not registered on the target site, what percentage of the time does the poster register there? So far, I'd say that questions migrated here have provided us with more work than a normal question in terms of cleaning up, without any indication of whether that is worth doing. Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 8:39
  • @Andrew: That is not true. We got several good questions via migration (look at the list of recently migrated questions), that didn't provide any additional clean-up work, except for retagging (this is unavoidable: SO has different conventions than we have and you can't expect the SO people/mods to know our conventions).
    – Caramdir
    Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 17:31
  • @Caramdir: admittedly, I haven't been paying attention to that list. I just took a look, and there weren't many questions there so it's not something I'll worry too much about. I just wonder how a feature like this gets tested to see if it's really something worth having or is just a bit of extra fluff. Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 18:51
  • @Rebecca: Maybe one could add a default tag (like {migrated-question}) on migration, so that it is easy to filter for it?
    – Caramdir
    Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 21:26
  • @Caramdir, this already happens. (: There aren't any now, but they'll be tagged untagged. Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 21:37
  • So is this now {status-implemented} instead of {status-planned}?
    – Caramdir
    Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 21:44
  • @Caramdir, [untagged] has been implemented for quite some time. The concept of a site having tags that are global is [status-planned]. Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 21:50
  • So that means at the moment, migration could still not work?
    – Caramdir
    Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 21:51
  • @Rebecca, @Caramdir: The tag "untagged" only makes sense for questions that have had all their tags removed by the migration process, which isn't necessarily every migrated question. What I'd like is to have migrated questions have a special "migrated question" tag. In fact, all the original tags could be removed and replaced by just a "migrated question" tag since it is highly unlikely that a tag that happens to be the same on two sites will actually have the same meaning. Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 23:08
  • @AndrewStacey, Yes, [untagged] is only added if the only tag on the question is one of a sites's [status-planned] global tag. What value would a [migrated] tag add beyond the list of recently imported questions in the tools? It only adds something that would need to be cleaned up later. Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 23:21
  • @Rebecca: I'm afraid I get a bit left behind with keeping up who can do what. Aren't the "tools" only available to 10k + Mods? In that case, it adds quite a lot since there are lots of people who could clean up a migrated question, if they could get some notification of it, but only a few 10k + Mods. But this is minor compared to my other question: what evidence do you have that migration is being used effectively? I'm rapidly losing track of all the features and abilities (I'm quite looking forward to going back to being an "ordinary user"!) and it makes me wonder a bit (ctd) Commented Feb 12, 2011 at 19:25
  • (ctd) what your methods of evaluation of these features are. SO is starting to look MSian in its "one site to rule them all" with a lot of feature bloat. As a mathematician, I prefer a much more modular approach. So I'm curious as to whether the features get evaluated at all, or just implemented and left at that. Commented Feb 12, 2011 at 19:27

Perhaps we should make a synonym for ! That way it would be very easy to see which questions have been migrated or not.

Hmm, maybe would be better. Then someone typing a new question here trying to tag as would see both and in the suggestions and (hopefully) figure out which one to use.

(On the other hand, and being a bit cheeky, having these questions being blocked wouldn't be too bad. If a question is to be migrated here, then the person doing the migration should have the ability to edit the tags on the question as it migrates to make them appropriate for this site. That way, the migrator has to have some knowledge about the site that they want to migrate a question to and it makes the process more of a "There's a better place to put this" than "We don't want this here (so we'll dump it on another site and let them deal with it).".)

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    Excellent idea. I think it might be good to make the target a qn less likely to occur by accident, e.g., [migrated-latex-question]. Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 8:34
  • ad parenthetical remark: This is not possible: SO has different tagging conventions, and quite often they simply have no tags that would match our tags. Also you can't expect the mods of other sites (who I think are the only ones who can actually initiate a migration) to know what the tagging conventions here are.
    – Caramdir
    Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 17:34
  • @Caramdir: I phrased it carefully, it shouldn't be that it get retagged on SO and then migrated, but that in the process it can be retagged. I think that someone migrating a question really ought to know something about the target site, otherwise how can they know that it's a good fit? That's part of why I think that in the migration process then the target site oughtn't to be passive but should be able to view the questions before they go to the main site. If a user wants a faster response, they can always post it afresh themselves. (ctd) Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 18:48
  • (ctd) All in all, I'd like to see some statistics as to whether or not migration was really a good thing in and of itself. In particular, do users migrate with their questions? However, I realise that all this is just wishful thinking and we haven't had that many migrated questions that I'm all that bothered. Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 18:50
  • I see, your remark is more of a feature-request, than a policy that should be implemented immediately. As a feature request, I agree that it would be useful to have some way of retagging during the migration phase.
    – Caramdir
    Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 20:21

That would be the logical consequence.

Though we could fix that by introducing as synonym for . I know that has been dropped and replaced by , but this could be ok, keeping the meaning of .

Nevertheless, we then should look at such tagged migrated and created questions to check if a more special tag fits better.

  • Correct me if I am wrong: if we add a synonym for the {latex} tag, then this also makes the {latex} tag available on this site. So we would get lots of questions tagged with {latex} by users from this site.
    – Caramdir
    Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 17:35
  • @Caramdir: The other way round: add {latex} as synomym. This way it's not directly available. If the master tag shows clearly what's meant, careful users may understand. And, for example, {latex-migrated} (where {latex} could map to) could easily be followed by users and moderators for checking this.
    – Stefan Kottwitz Mod
    Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 18:22
  • It would still suggest {latex} in the autocompletion for tag entry (as latex (s)). I'd still prefer Rebeccas solution of simply removing all tags.
    – Caramdir
    Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 21:25
  • @Caramdir: I don't think that SE would like that very much! It would probably segfault or something ;-).
    – SamB
    Commented Feb 15, 2011 at 20:32

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