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While I do not object to the use of astronaut as inclusive of cosmonauts, taikonauts (which Wikipedia indicates is a media term with limited use), astronauts "proper", and any other 'naut, even within an English-language site I do not know if such is insensitive to the activity of "non-Western" (Russia being kind of in between) 'nauts.

(The use of the Chinese for "spaceman" in Taiwan and Hong Kong seems good to me--some crew members are not really "sailors"--; but it is almost certainly too late for such to be adopted as standard English use, though such might have some benefit of reducing the visibility of nationality.)

The fact that Wikipedia chose "astronaut" for the canonical article title might indicate that such is not inappropriate, but Space Exploration SE might come to a different conclusion.

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    $\begingroup$ What's in a name? That which we call a rose, By any other name would smell as sweet... For the really politically sensitive folks I suppose the term *naut would do. $\endgroup$ – Deer Hunter Jul 25 '13 at 4:38
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    $\begingroup$ @DeerHunter Except that would also obfuscate what the user is talking about, making it that much harder to find through search. $\endgroup$ – Robert Cartaino Jul 25 '13 at 15:41
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    $\begingroup$ @DeerHunter I take it you're not an oneironaut, an aquanaut, an Awesomenaut, or a Hugenot (groan). There are probably better examples, but no, I don't think "*naut would do" $\endgroup$ – hunter2 Jul 31 '13 at 8:10
  • $\begingroup$ Is that pronounced aster-naut? $\endgroup$ – bright-star Feb 23 '17 at 23:00
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I think we should use the appropriate term depending on the question. If it's a question about the Russian Federal Space Agency, use cosmonaut.

The default term should be Astronaut (for the same reason Pearson states) if the post is agnostic to any specific program.

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    $\begingroup$ It is a question of tradition, depending on nationalities and/or where people are launched. If a question asks about specifics of a program or if we have to respect historical sources (which draw a clear line between astronauts and cosmonauts, for instance), we should use the respective terms. Even next to each other. $\endgroup$ – s-m-e Jul 25 '13 at 10:32
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I think we should use Astronaut, and even go so far as to make the others tag synonyms if they pop up. If it's good enough for Wikipedia to choose that particular standard, then it's good enough for here. And I find it hard to imagine questions that would be that highly specified.

I should state that I wouldn't go so far as to change any reference in the body of a question to astronaut, but at the very least, the tag should be .

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    $\begingroup$ Additionally, SE is in English... We should stick with the standard unless we specifically want to refer to Cosmonauts etc $\endgroup$ – Rory Alsop Jul 25 '13 at 11:35
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Other terms such as spationaute, angkasawan, uchuu hikoshi, etc. are also in use. IMO, the use of country-specific terms is a needless complication and a potential source of confusion that we can do without.

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