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The news tag is too general. The story submission guidelines read, “If no tags clearly apply to the story you are submitting, chances are it does not belong here. Do not overreach with tags if they are not the primary focus of the story.” But nearly anything can be fitted underneath news, and you can’t really filter out the news tag because if it’s also about something interesting, then I’ll be curious about it.

Fundamentally, the biggest problem is that news isn’t really a topic in the same way that topics like “math” or “hardware” or “rust” are.


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    Ok, the news tag can no longer be used on new stories. There are too many old ones with news as its only tag to completely remove it.

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      HN was already pretty thoroughly shitted up by news stories–and the thing is that news is a wonderful catch-all for all kinds of crap that isn’t relevant to hackers.

      News comes from either a unique blog (in which case, we usually have better context and more tags than just ‘news’), internet echo chamber (in which case we can find it anywhere else, notably HN), or mainstream media (in which case it’s probably schlock and not written deeply enough to be meaningful information).

      That being the case, I’d suggest getting rid of the concept of news tags.

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        I still think that adding a more specific tag for valley news is more appropriate. That way, users could filter on that and still be able to get “news”

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          I agree. Taking a look over the last 25 stories tagged with “news”, only four of those stories are solely tagged “news”. Those four stories are also very controversial, having five downvotes for being off topic. It’s become obvious that many users don’t want any kind of valley news. Having a tag for it just encourages it.

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            I’m not sure why people keep referring to multi-billion dollar acquisitions as “Valley News.” If it made the front page of CNN, it’s pretty clearly of national interest.

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              Or world interest; the WhatsApp acquisition is on the front page of http://www.clarin.com/ too. On the other hand, if I want to read the things on the front page of CNN, which I usually don’t, I can visit CNN’s web site. I’m happier to see things like An introduction to lock-free programming here.

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                I think the point is that there are already plenty of outlets to get this sort of startup-ish news, and that people come here for technical stories. You’d have to be living under a rock not to have heard of WhatsApp - what need is there to have that reproduced here? I would bet that a significant chunk of this community either also reads HN or left HN due to the overabundance of that sort of ‘news’.

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                  Personally, I’d rather that be left to readers' votes to decide.

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                  I would hesitate to use CNN as the yardstick for items of national interest.