In the early days of GIS Stack Exchange it was recognized that every question here could be potentially tagged . Any question which could not, would be off-topic.

As a result that tag was blacklisted by Jeff Atwood using the blacklisting procedure and rationale discussed in Meta SE.

At the moment we have a tag called applied to 47 questions and its wiki defines it as:

A term widely used to describe the combination of spatial software and analytical methods with terrestrial or geographic datasets

This sounds a lot like GIS to me - should it too be blacklisted?

I think the same argument will also apply to with 83 questions:

Related to or existing within space.

So, comments about whether there is any need to treat differently to are probably best made now too.

With what looks to be overwhelming support (7 upvotes, 0 downvotes on the question; 17 upvotes, 0 downvotes on the answer) I am going to proceed with burninate both tags ( and )followed by blacklisting them according to the procedures outlined in:

  1. When to burninate
  2. How should we make tag blacklist requests?

If anyone with full editing rights wants to help with the process please feel free to do so.

When the and tags had their blacklisting completed today by Jon Ericson support for that being done was 12 upvotes (0 downvotes) on the question (which recommended blacklisting) and 27 upvotes (0 downvotes) on the answer (which was to endorse blacklisting).

  • What about spatial-database or spatially-enabled? These are keywords that apply to many GIS-enabled tools/applications that are not strictly GIS or located in the real world, would a ban on spatial prevent creation/use of such tags?
    – brichins
    Commented Dec 10, 2014 at 20:15
  • 1
    There is nothing tagged spatially-enabled so no need to worry about that (yet). There is no intention to blacklist tags that start with "spatial" just spatial itself.
    – PolyGeo Mod
    Commented Dec 10, 2014 at 20:51

1 Answer 1



I think geospatial is for all intents and purposes a synonym of GIS and thus any case for blacklisting the tag should apply equally to .

was blacklisted long ago so I think blacklisting of is long overdue.

  • Remote-sensing is a similar case. It has a more narrow scope than 'gis' and 'geospatial', but it's also a meta tag. Commented Dec 10, 2014 at 13:42
  • 12
    @Andre Silva I have often thought about the relevance of the remote sensing tag. My thoughts are that the RS is a much more refined subject area than GIS and it would therefore be in our best interest to keep the tag. The problem with the GIS tag is that every question on the site would qualify, including RS questions. The RS tag contains a specific subset of questions, often relating to spectral properties or land cover classification. Furthermore, I believe the tags helps direct RS experts to the site based on google hits. Maybe we should bring it up to the community?
    – Aaron Mod
    Commented Dec 10, 2014 at 14:30
  • 2
    @Aaron, perhaps you are correct with your last comment (google hits), but my opinion is that this tag doesn't help much with searching questions, like more specific tags do: land-cover, land-classification, imagery, landsat, lidar, radar, multi-band, etc. A suggestion would be to improve the excerpt and wiki of the rs tag, emphasizing specifically when to use it. Commented Dec 10, 2014 at 14:48
  • Amusing, on SO, the geospatial tag has 1487 question tagged. But, it makes more sense in the context of a site that does not have gis in the url and has 8 million plus questions. Commented Dec 10, 2014 at 16:37
  • 3
    @AndreSilva I think remote-sensing falls outside this discussion because it is not (for our purposes) coextensive with GIS like the geospatial and spatial tags.
    – PolyGeo Mod
    Commented Dec 10, 2014 at 21:28
  • 1
    I think both geospatial and spatial by themselves are meta tags. They're adjectives that don't describe anything sufficiently to provide any kind of 'narrowing' or subject. Geospatial itself is far too synonymous with GIS on this SE. Spatial combined with another word might make sense (the distinction between a spatial database and one that isn't), but alone it's meaningless in the context of this site. And I agree with Aaron, with John's comment as an example, of why RS works as a tag here. There are always cases where a more general topic/subject tag are needed over very specific tags.
    – Chris W
    Commented Dec 10, 2014 at 21:49

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