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I just created and think it would be a very good idea to add a synonym , considering how common that abbreviation is. However, when I go to suggest it, I'm told I need 5 score in that tag before I can suggest synonyms. That's fine, but... do I not already have 5 score in that tag, based on having added it to questions I've asked and/or answered? Or is the system specifically not counting my score because I created the tag myself (which would be weird)?

Or is it just like certain badges, etc., in that it takes a few minutes for the SE hamsters to run around and record that I do in fact have a score of 5, and I should just be patient?

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This looks like a hamster thing. I've just now suggested it as a synonym myself just to check it had nothing to do with the tag not existing. You do have an answer score of 5 in the tag and meet the reputation prerequisite.

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    \$\begingroup\$ But please create synonyms in response to people mistagging, just making a bunch of them up is pointless complexity and waste. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk says reinstate Monica Oct 5 '17 at 19:53
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    \$\begingroup\$ Yeah we don't usually do anticipatory synonym creation -- if nobody's used it we don't really need a synonym for it. \$\endgroup\$ – doppelgreener Oct 5 '17 at 19:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ Interesting, that's news to me. I'll keep it in mind. \$\endgroup\$ – SirTechSpec Oct 6 '17 at 0:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ @mxyzplk What do you mean? That is, what is the cost of a synonym?/What is wasted and where does the complexity come from? \$\endgroup\$ – Please stop being evil Oct 20 '17 at 6:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Uh - work to set them up, maintenance when they conflict with something else in the future, more junk coming up in autocomplete when you're trying to find useful tags - the standard complexity that too much stuff provides in every other human endeavor. In general it's always a worst practice to overengineer up front. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk says reinstate Monica Oct 21 '17 at 2:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ @thedarkwanderer Generally, yeah, we try to be conservative with synonyms. We'll very rarely do some obvious ones in anticipation of a need (actually I'm failing to come up with examples, but I feel like the number is slightly above zero), but as a rule it's more effective to create them reactively to duplicate tags being created, retagging projects being launched, and the like — real demonstrations of utility. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Nov 4 '17 at 20:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ There was spell to spells recently, and there's some British/American English spelling synonyms. \$\endgroup\$ – doppelgreener Nov 4 '17 at 20:36

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