Lots of questions on the site ask if a word/phrase/construct is acceptable, correct or common (as opposed to unacceptable, erroneous or obsolete). For example:

I was wondering if we could (and indeed, if we even should) come up with a good tag to group such questions together. I'm not sure, but I think such a tag might be useful. (At least more useful than many of the random tags now found in such questions: words, usage, ...)

1 Answer 1


What a good idea! I suggest “acceptability”.

Edit February 2, 2011:

was convicted of being a meta-tag and given the death penalty on Feb. 1, when it had been used on 44 questions. After some discussion it was agreed that perhaps it was a misused and misunderstood tag but not necessarily a meta-tag and it might be tolerated if used correctly.

Since then, I have resurrected the "acceptability" tag in the guise of , and have now tagged over 100 questions with it—all questions that ask about the grammatical correctness or acceptability of different English usages. I would hope that everyone now agrees that the tag denotes something specific about question contents and is not a meta-tag.

  • Thanks for the suggestion! I've now started to "roll out" the new tag by retagging a couple of questions (replacing usage where applicable). Let's see how it catches on...
    – Jonik
    Sep 19, 2010 at 12:05
  • careful, we just decided this is a meta tag and removed it. Acceptable to whom? Acceptable by what metric? meta.english.stackexchange.com/questions/609/… Feb 1, 2011 at 2:33
  • 5
    @Jeff How infuriating! You just deleted a useful tag without giving any opportunity for discussion. WE decided nothing. YOU decided to delete it after less than an hour of discussion.
    – nohat Mod
    Feb 1, 2011 at 3:17
  • 2
    Yeah, sorry @Jeff, but this is bullshit. I thought SE is largely about community self-direction, instead of some big shot randomly stopping by to change whatever on a whim. You listened to ONE user (member for 2 days, with 1 question posted), and rushed to do adverse changes that cannot be easily reverted. At the very least you should have waited to hear what the active community thinks about this (of which neither you nor Hello71 are really part of, looking at your profiles). I'm a bit disappointed.
    – Jonik
    Feb 2, 2011 at 13:01
  • @jonik 44 questions is hardly a disaster. And even @nohat will tell you that many of those were mistagged to begin with. So, tag appropriately and build it better than before. I'm still unclear how [usage] fits into this, too; it seems [usage] is a broader application. Feb 3, 2011 at 1:18
  • @Jeff I think the usage tag should be considered as an independent issue. In my view, and as discussed here, it never had much utility. It's largely an unfortunate "default" tag, like the guitar tag at Guitars SE. (Regardless of that, the acceptability tag's (intented) purpose was much clearer.)
    – Jonik
    Feb 6, 2011 at 10:41
  • 1
    @nohat 'acceptability' seems perfect. <sigh> Grammaticality is more specific and also way more obscure.
    – jbelacqua
    Mar 28, 2011 at 22:16

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