Some questions (such as this one about automatic shifting) primarily have answers which contain outdated information. I think this can be especially harmful, considering how these old questions are likely to be the top hits for an internet search, and the older answers are also likely to be the highest-voted ones. A modern-day answer is likely to only get a few upvotes.

I'm proposing we introduce an [outdated] tag for questions which are objectively outdated, as measured by them focusing on premises which are inapplicable to the modern view on the subject. Of course, not every old question is outdated; many of them do not pose as being universally applicable to all cases.

This could include scenarios such as:

  • Questions about the smallest cog on a cassette (11t back then, nowadays 10t or even 9t)
  • Wheel/tire size questions with outdated specifications
  • FUD [fear, uncertainty, doubt] about concerns that aren't as applicable nowadays (eg. poor quality carbon wheels, tubeless installation)
  • Tire pressure questions which say to maximize pressure.

What are your thoughts on my suggestion?

  • There is already the tag vintage. Wouldn't that do?
    – Chenmunka
    Commented Feb 26, 2022 at 14:00
  • 4
    @Chenmunka “Vintage” specifically refers to dealing with older bikes. It doesn’t mean the information presented is outdated or wrong per se.
    – MaplePanda
    Commented Feb 26, 2022 at 17:05
  • 1
    These are known as "meta-tags" because they're not about the topic/content of the question; instead they're specific to this instance of this question. Other SE sites have faced this before, and relevant reading gaming.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/3800/… as well as an old Blog post from Jeff Attwood at stackoverflow.blog/2010/08/07/the-death-of-meta-tags Definitely worth a read.
    – Criggie Mod
    Commented Feb 28, 2022 at 22:19

3 Answers 3


I definitely get the idea. However:

  • It require a lot of tending of older questions to be useful.
  • Just having a tag would not be a very conspicuous identifier.
  • There be a lot of subjectivity.
  • 1
    Adding a tag also raises the post back onto the home page. Like necromancy, not everyone like this.
    – Criggie Mod
    Commented Feb 27, 2022 at 2:26

One solution is to flag for moderator attention and write why, because Mods have access to this menu:

Unless noted, locks disable new interactions (e.g. deletion, editing, answering).
Use post locks as a last resort only. 

() Content dispute
Lock this post if there are disputes about its content that need to be resolved.

() Comments only
Lock the comments on this post if the discussion is no longer 
contributing to its improvement. Users will still be able to interact 
with this post in all other ways.

() Historical significance
Lock this post if it’s off-topic but has historical significance.

() Wiki Answer
Lock this post to encourage users to edit existing answers. Remember to 
remove unnecessary answers and to mark questions and their answers as
Community Wiki posts.

() Obsolete
This post is marked obsolete because the content is out of date.
It is not currently accepting new interactions.

These prevent the post, or various parts of it from being edited or added. In your example, the question is still sound but some of the answers are perhaps outdated, so the only way to show an answer is good or not is with up/downvotes.

Additionally, anyone can post an updated answer that shows how things may have changed in the intervening time. For example, "Five years later this is now possible...." from https://bicycles.stackexchange.com/a/73441/19705

  • 1
    I'm proponent of marking the question as obsolete. Adding an answer 5y later is not relevant to me as it is very unlikely that the OP will mark the new (current) answer as accepted, so even more unlikely that someone landing on the page will find it, and I noticed that in that case, the updated answers are not upvoted 'enough' to appear higher in the list.
    – Rеnаud
    Commented Feb 27, 2022 at 8:03
  • 1
    Flag with a request to mark as obsolete seems like the best we can do
    – Andy P
    Commented Feb 28, 2022 at 8:57
  • 2
    I'm not sure we should lock questions that are obsolete. Some of them might be fixable to make them more current.
    – jimchristie Mod
    Commented Feb 28, 2022 at 13:11
  • Check the two links in question's comment for how other sites have faced this same issue.
    – Criggie Mod
    Commented Feb 28, 2022 at 22:20

10 years ago, 11T is the smallest cog, and we have faulty carbon fiber frames at least, from the very reputable brands, sold for 5-digit prices.

You may say 40 years old Alex Singer bike is outdated too, but for some like me, it's a classic. And I don't think we should expect from people to "upgrade" their bikes in short intervals, as the "bike media" and industry suggests. My humble opinion is that, there is nothing "outdated" about bikes. If you have a 10 speed MTB hub from Shimano, yes, 11T is the smallest cog. And I see no reason to upgrade, my 2x10 drivetrain(s) on my several bikes still serves me very well.

Duplicate or pointless questions is a problem,if you meant that...

  • 1
    Thanks for the answer. I think you misunderstood my idea of "outdated". I agree that bikes don't get outdated. My concern is when questions/answers say things to be universal truths, but changes in technology have made them untrue. Eg. a question about MTB hub widths before boost was a thing, seatpost diameters before 34.9mm was a thing, freehub bodies before XD and microspline existed, etc. My concern is for newer cyclists who read those old posts and think that's still the current state of the technology.
    – MaplePanda
    Commented Dec 30, 2022 at 6:24
  • Sorry, I think I got a bit nervous. Maybe "outdated" is slightly hurtful. I mean, it's used as "useless" these days. Basically, your idea is useful and clever. And at least I find your concern very valid. Also ı dont like the idea of expiring content, because it's useful for someone. I am restoring a 20 year old SID these days, cost me a new shock money. Maybe there should be an icon denoting the content is not "fresh". Or, a more neutral tag. Commented Dec 30, 2022 at 7:48

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