Someone recently asked a legitimate question about transferring money to a friend stranded abroad.

This rightfully caused the alarm bell to ring in everyone's head: RUN, this is a scam! Because it usually is. A standard way is to hack an account on a popular social media network, then send out messages to all their friends claiming they are stuck somewhere and need money as soon as possible, preferably transferred through some untraceable option.

Normally such a question would be tagged with .

However, it turns out that claims to have done a lot of things to validate that their friend is really who they are - this is possibly not a scam.

My question is: Would it still be useful to tag the question with ?

I'm not really going to argue for or against, but it's an idea possibly worth thinking about. It could be useful to see how to handle possibly-legitimiate-but-not-quite-sure situations. There's also still a chance this is a scam, judging from some unanswered questions.

  • I think other sites, such as Finance, use "scam" even if it turns out not to be a scam. In fairness to their site, 99% of times when they suspect it's a scam, it actually is. – Andrew Grimm Oct 23 '18 at 22:55

If OP comes out and says something to the effect of "No worries friends, I have video Skyped with my friend and I am 100% confident she is indeed in distress", then the 'scam' tag is inappropriate. Likewise if OP edits the post to remove the tag themselves.

Tags should be used to help future readers find an answer to their question. Therefore if this particular question is not about a scam, there's no need to add it there.


It seems to me that there are two ways the tag could be used:

  • To label questions that ask about scams or something that might be a scam.
  • To label questions about something where users have judged that it is in fact a scam.

The latter is a meta-tag. It's not as much used to classify the question, but to give an opinion (or in some sense even an answer(!)) to the question. Meta-tags are discouraged.

As such, my suggestion would be similar to @NeanDerThal. Rename the tag to make it clear that the question is a question about a scam. Don't use it to mark content in the question as being a scam.


I guess the tag should be changed to:

This way readers wouldn't assume it's a scam and we don't have to remove the tag later. IMO.

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