I'm not a mathematician, but an electircal engineer. However, EE guys also use a lot of mathematical theory. So Mathematics Stack Exchange seems the best place to ask questions about those.

In the past months I've asked some questions about mathematical notation. E.g. Correct notation to combine functions in one function: a question on the possibility to combine function definitions in a set. So I wanted to tag the question to be related to sets. The only option for that was the tag "set-theory". The tag was removed within 2 hours.

I also asked Notation question: set of times of certain events: a question about how to formulate an equation for a paper. The questions was about sets again, but I dared not add the "set-theory" tag. So I tagged the question "notation". However, somebody removed the "notation" tag and added "real-analysis" and "functions" tag. And now I got a large answer on how to derive proof for an equation, which I cannot use in my paper.

My point being: why are people changing these tags? I know there probably are a number of math-purists here, but tags are there to attract the attention of people that might be able to help you. IMHO if somebody has tagged their questions incorrectly, then you should suggest better tags.

edit: Maybe my point/problem is: for 'newbies'/math-outsiders it's totally not clear how to a question should be tagged...

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    $\begingroup$ You may not have noticed there's an elementary-set-theory tag. $\endgroup$ – Gerry Myerson May 13 '18 at 12:23
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    $\begingroup$ You were a bit unlucky to pick one of the popular tags that we had to split into elementary vs. the real things versions. It really is best to keep the two variants separated for many reasons. We (yours truly not so much) have invested a significant amount of work into building up and maintaining a tagging system that works for Math.SE, and I trust those users 100%. I agree with T. Bongers, IMHO notation is an appropriate tag for the second question. I'm actually not so sure about real-analysis in that case. $\endgroup$ – Jyrki Lahtonen May 13 '18 at 12:45
  • $\begingroup$ Somewhat related to your recent addition to the post: How am I supposed to use tags? $\endgroup$ – Martin Sleziak May 13 '18 at 13:10
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    $\begingroup$ @JHBonarius On meta, upvotes and downvotes are meant to convey agreement / disagreement with the question. I would interpret the downvotes to mean "I disagree with your position that folk should suggest changes to tagging rather than just doing it themselves." $\endgroup$ – Xander Henderson May 13 '18 at 13:39

My point being: why are people changing these tags?

Because the tags were being used incorrectly. (Well at least , the other question it's less clear)

I know there probably are a number of math-purists here, but tags are there to attract the attention of people that might be able to help you.

Wrong. Tags are used to organize the site. That is why tags must be used by their community agreed upon definitions. in its descriptions says

This tag is for set theory topics typically studied at the advanced undergraduate or graduate level. More elementary questions should use the tag instead.

You didn't use the tag correctly so someone changed it.

  • $\begingroup$ thank for you answer. For your final comment: that person did not change it: he removed it. IMHO he should indeed have changed it to "elementary-set-theory". Just removing stuff could lead to questions having no tags at all.. Editing rights also gives responsibility. $\endgroup$ – JHBonarius May 13 '18 at 12:55
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    $\begingroup$ @JHBonarius If someone else edits your question in an attempt to improve it, but leaves it in a state that is only debatably better, you are still free keep editing, or to rollback the edits. Also, I am reasonably sure that you can @-ping someone who has edited one of your questions (though they won't appear in the list of pingables while you type?). You could ask for clarification in a comment attached to your question. EDIT: I see that you did that. Huzzah! $\endgroup$ – Xander Henderson May 13 '18 at 13:41
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    $\begingroup$ @JHB, I don't think it's possible for a question to have no tag at all. I don't think the software would permit it. $\endgroup$ – Gerry Myerson May 14 '18 at 10:08

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