Our tags are normally using the plural, especially when they are about a grammatical category.

Since the last is not , should not we also use instead of the actual ?

  • The answer depends on how searches are parsed, I think. Is the string verb parsed as a component of the string verbs? Caveat: since I know nothing about how tags are used in search, I may have this all wrong. – P. E. Dant Reinstate Monica Sep 8 '16 at 21:37
  • I find it somewhat jarring to see the singular for tags. I much prefer the plural. Even this discussion is tagged with "tags" not "tag". – ColleenV Sep 9 '16 at 2:27
  • @ColleenV It is what I think too. A single question could ask about a verb, but all the questions tagged with the same tag are asking about verbs, generally speaking. – kiamlaluno Sep 9 '16 at 9:35
  • @P.E.Dant When you search for all the questions using a tag, you enter a tag name. You can make a tag as synonym of another one, though. – kiamlaluno Sep 9 '16 at 9:36
  • @kiamlaluno I understand how to search. I mean to say that I don't understand how strings are processed by the code, since I've never looked under the hood. – P. E. Dant Reinstate Monica Sep 9 '16 at 16:00
  • @P.E.Dant I mean that to search all questions tagged verbs, you use [verbs], which finds just that tag, not similar tags. You need of know the tags a site is using. – kiamlaluno Sep 9 '16 at 16:14

Yes, I agree. When our tags have the form of a countable noun phrase, they should be plural.

Tag names should have a generic interpretation. That is, when we use the tag, we're saying "This question is about modal verbs", referring to the class of modal auxiliary verbs in general. And although there are several ways to form a noun phrase with a generic interpretation in English, because we don't use articles in tag names, the only relevant option is the plural generic, as in the following example:

Modal auxiliary verbs are a special type of auxiliary verb used to express meanings such as ability, likelihood, permission, and obligation. These include will, would, can, could, shall, should, may, might, must, ought, need, and dare.

In this example, I've used the plural form to refer to the entire class of modal auxiliaries. We should do the same thing with our tag names. When I see a tag with a singular name like , it feels off to me, like the wrong form of the word has been used.

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