I saw a question with the tag k-nn for K-Nearest Neighbors. I thought it was a typo and that it should be changed to knn. To my surprise, the knn tag didn't exist and isn't a synonym either.

I thought "fair enough" and wanted to add knn as a synonym for k-nn so that people like me would find it easier or would not try to create an unnecessary tag.


I was unable to add a synonym for the tag because it requires a score of at least 5 in that tag. I then tried to add a synonym for a tag for which I did meet that requirement. It said that the synonym must have already been used in the site to be added.


I feel that adding synonyms should be more accessible. The primary goal of tags is to filter questions in an efficient way. The enemies of this are:

  • missing tags

Currently, tags like knn or automated-machine-learning do not exist. If someone searches for them, they might think they need to add them to the site. Which leads to:

  • redundant tags

If they don't know about k-nn and automl we will have redundant tags. To fix it, someone will need to point this out, and provide them as synonyms of each other.

I propose that suggesting synonyms should be open to every member (with enough reputation). The reviewing process might need to be stricter but I do believe it would serve the reason tags exist in the first place more efficiently.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ These privilege-based limitations is across the SO network. So, what I suggest is the following: 'If you think you have a valid suggestion for a tag synonym or a change in tag needed, then do go ahead and raise a question/post in meta and anyone with enough rep can go ahead and help you with that, post vetting" $\endgroup$
    – Dawny33
    Dec 11, 2019 at 4:09
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Didn't know it was SO-wide, thanks. I will do this in the future, hopefully this won't be seen as bad questions on meta $\endgroup$ Dec 11, 2019 at 9:30
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ No question is a bad question on meta :) $\endgroup$
    – Dawny33
    Dec 11, 2019 at 11:34


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