I feel like I've been editing out the tag all evening and it keeps coming back from the grave. This is a meta tag at its worst: it's meaningless, it doesn't provide any indication of what the question is about.

Please disallow the tag (and , which I expect might then arise as a fallback).

  • I think it does provide an indication of what the question is about. Instead of asking for a normal recommendation, they are asking for an alternative. It's sort of like a category.
    – Rajiv
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 1:21
  • 5
    @Compukid Every application is an alternative to other applications. This tag doesn't categorize anything. Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 1:41
  • What if you were specifically looking for an alternative to an application you already know about?
    – aman207
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 2:48
  • 2
    @aman207 If that's your only requirement, then the application itself is evidently the best answer and the question doesn't need asking. If you have other requirements, then the question is really “requirement X and requirement Y” — the fact that it's an alternative to application A is only a side comment. In any case, the question is about PDF viewers or image processing or email or whatever it is, it isn't a question “about alternatives”. Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 2:50
  • I think this group has to decide if "Alternative to X?" is a valid question. If so, you might as well have the tag. Pretty likely you'll have "X" as a tag anyway. This way, finding the alternative questions would be easy: search for tag "alternative" and tag "X". (I don't happen to be in favor of allowing alternative questions).
    – Ira Baxter
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 4:31
  • 1
    I tend to agree that this is a meta tag and the consensus will probably arrive at burning and blacklisting it, but I'm not going to do it just yet, I'd like to allow for some arguments for / against it. Just noting, I'm +1 to keeping it out.
    – Tim Post
    Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 7:53
  • I removed another one -_-
    – Braiam
    Commented Feb 10, 2014 at 16:57

2 Answers 2


The alternatives tag is a meta tag. it should be banned and burniated.

Good questions, will provide examples of what as program that is similar to what they want. So most questions will deserve this tag.

(Community Wiki, Please feel free to edit this to provide arguments in favour of the banning of the tag.)


The http://alternativeto.net/tag is useful and interesting tag. Some people might want to follow it, because they are interested in alternatives in a general kinda way.

Alternatives are a different kinda question, the asker already has a solution, and so the issues they are facing are different.

These are the kinda people that browse: AlternativeTo, for fun. They are a large portion of our market.

(Community Wiki, Please feel free to edit this to provide arguments in favour of the keeping of the tag.)

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