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The following two tags look synonymous:

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  • $\begingroup$ [E-m] has only six questions. Somebody just needs to go ahead and retag all six of them manually (perhaps you can do it, @Franck?). This is much simpler than to get moderators to make a tag synonym. After the tag is cleared off from all questions, it will be automatically deleted in 24 hours. $\endgroup$ – amoeba Oct 5 '15 at 23:45
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    $\begingroup$ @amoeba sure, done $\endgroup$ – Franck Dernoncourt Oct 5 '15 at 23:49
  • $\begingroup$ @Amoeba It is a simple matter for mods to make a tag synonym--which I have done. The beauty of that is it's reversible. It's much more difficult to reverse a systematic retagging. Upon checking the tag wikis, I discovered the wiki for the "e-m" tag stated "EM (expectation-maximization) is an iterative clustering algorithm that allows one to partition a data set into clusters based on the data's log-likelihood." That's much more specific than the wiki for expectation-maximization. I wonder, then, whether those who used it did so expressly to indicate an interest in clustering. $\endgroup$ – whuber Oct 6 '15 at 1:02
  • $\begingroup$ @whuber I spotted that as well, but looking at the questions it was any kind of expectation maximization. $\endgroup$ – Franck Dernoncourt Oct 6 '15 at 1:10
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    $\begingroup$ @whuber, that's right. The only reason I suggested to do this manually in this case, is that I have the feeling that moderators tend to be very reluctant to carry out any tag changes. I can easily point to several threads on meta where a tag change was suggested, got a very positive response (lots of upvotes, no downvotes or no negative comments), but no moderator action was taken (kernel tag comes to mind, recent thread about nlp, etc). In fact, I was planning to ask a new meta question to draw attention to this issue and to discuss what should we do about it. Maybe it's a right time now! $\endgroup$ – amoeba Oct 6 '15 at 14:27
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    $\begingroup$ @amoeba When mods are reluctant to make tag changes, perhaps that should be taken as a sign that such changes might be problematic. Manually forcing those changes through via wholesale edits to many posts doesn't seem like a constructive way to address that issue. (BTW, I don't think any problems were created in this particular case.) $\endgroup$ – whuber Oct 6 '15 at 14:41
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, @whuber, I can see this point. I guess I will bring it up on meta as a separate question and then we can discuss it. Thanks. $\endgroup$ – amoeba Oct 6 '15 at 14:43
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As this case seemed to be very clear-cut and as there were only very few (5) questions tagged with [e-m], I suggested to manually retag them to [expectation-minization] and have the issue solved.

This was done and the issue is solved.

I agree with @whuber, however, that in general massive manual retagging is something to avoid.

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