Since there's no reputation reward or stack-exchange virtual stickers for it, I'm using this space to say thanks to @scottbb for valiant effort to save the tag, by making it refer to actual, real-world filters rather than digital post-processing filters. This is a bit quixotic, but, hey — it does make the thing a bit more useful than having it as a mess of "effect" and physical filter questions mixed together.

People are still gonna keep coming by and using it for Instagram questions (or, you know, "What filter do I need to take pictures like I saw in National Geographic?" — *sigh*), though, so we will need to either keep a constant eye on it, or come up with some non-ambiguous synonym and use that instead. I don't have any ideas though, so... opening discussion. :)

  • upvoted. obviously =)
    – scottbb Mod
    Jul 10, 2016 at 1:46

1 Answer 1


First pitch: either or .

I like [app-filters] because it's shorter, and frankly, 95% of the people who will be asking this will be about apps like Instagram, followed by Facebook, Photos, and a smattering of VSCO and others.

The pro for [software-filters] is that it also applies to desktop software "filters" (I don't know about others, but to me, "apps" means smartphone/tablet software. Maybe I'm a curmudgeon).

Agreed, this will be a constant PITA, however, because new users will always be coming in with "what filter did so-and-so use in this picture?" arggh.

  • 2
    More inclined to [digital-filters] to be honest.
    – Joanne C
    Jul 10, 2016 at 14:55
  • The others could be a tag synonym in that event. Still requires some diligence on our part, but it's a start.
    – Joanne C
    Jul 10, 2016 at 14:56
  • JoanneC: [digital-filters] is pretty good. I'm personally just slightly adverse to it because I come from a digital signal processing background, where "digital filtering" goes hand-in-hand with Z-transforms. But I'd happily give up that ground if it means protecting [filters] for the physical ones. =)
    – scottbb Mod
    Jul 10, 2016 at 16:58
  • The problem I have is that people are still going to use "filters" for software effects, and we'll have to retag. Maybe that just can't be helped.
    – mattdm
    Jul 10, 2016 at 19:04
  • 2
    @mattdm Yep. That's the conclusion I came to awhile ago. There's really only 2 options: sweep-up duty; or giving up the tag to the "what's this effect called" Instagram crowd, and retreating to something like [physical-filters]. I really don't like the 2nd option.
    – scottbb Mod
    Jul 10, 2016 at 19:07

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