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The space program under the erstwhile USSR was highly decentralized. The Russian Federal Space Agency aka Roscosmos was constituted by presidential decree after the Russian Federation emerged from the USSR.

The thing is, here on SpaceEx.SE, the tag 'russia' was used originally. The tag 'roscosmos' is a new entity. I started to apply the latter tag; then realized the tag-alternation may affect search-engine visibility.

  • Should questions relating to pre-1992/Roscosmos space missions be tagged 'russia', and post-1992/Roscosmos space missions be tagged 'roscosmos'?
  • Should all questions pertaining to space missions with a Russian/USSR affiliation carry both 'roscosmos', and 'russia' tags, or v.v?
  • In the event of the latter i.e. tag with both 'russia', and 'roscosmos', which takes precedence when the 5-tag limit is met?
  • Should 'roscosmos' be deleted as redundant?
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  • $\begingroup$ It is not that Russians suddenly decided to join all of their space industry under Roscosmos only in 1992. The coordinating functions currently held by Roscosmos were provided by the Ministry of General Machine Building in the USSR. $\endgroup$ – horsh Oct 19 '13 at 11:26
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Roscosmos is not the only component of the Russian space program. As such, it is definitely not redundant. I suggest tagging the post with both "Russia" and "Roscosmos" if you want to optimize visibility.


To solve the pre-1991 space dilemma, I suggest using the tag suggested by Tildal below rather than .

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  • $\begingroup$ What if the 5-tag limit is already full? $\endgroup$ – Everyone Oct 17 '13 at 15:11
  • $\begingroup$ @Everyone You optimize according to which tags are most important to the post. $\endgroup$ – called2voyage Oct 17 '13 at 15:16
  • $\begingroup$ Soviet era should really be tagged something else than with "Russia" though, since it was a confederation of now independent states, Russia being but a member (albeit the biggest one). So if "soviet-space-program" is too long then alternatives I can think of could be "ussr", "red-space" (it's often quoted with this name so I don't think it's offensive, correct me if I'm wrong), or simply "soviets" (IMO plural, because there were many confederate states in it). $\endgroup$ – TildalWave Oct 18 '13 at 2:25
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Russia for anything related to the Soviet Union and Russian Federation in general. RF is the cessionary of the USSR in many aspects, including the space program.

USSR to stress the difference between then and now. Please don't use Soviets tag. You wouldn't expect Yankees to denote US space program, would you?

Roscosmos only in the context where it is opposed to other parts of the Russian space industry.

Should questions relating to pre-1992/Roscosmos space missions be tagged 'russia', and post-1992/Roscosmos space missions be tagged 'roscosmos'?

Russia is okay for both, I suppose. Many projects are contionous lineages, so typically one can't tell. In general, one needs an access to classified documentation to tell if a project started already in Roscosmos times or has been ended pre-1992.

Should all questions pertaining to space missions with a Russian/USSR affiliation carry both 'roscosmos', and 'russia' tags, or v.v?

Mark it Russia, I'd say. All Roscosmos projects can be marked with Russia.

In the event of the latter i.e. tag with both 'russia', and 'roscosmos', which takes precedence when the 5-tag limit is met?

If there is a need for Roscosmos arises it has precedence.

For example a question discussing relations of RKK Energia, Sea Launch and Roscosmos could get the Roscosmos tag.

Should 'roscosmos' be deleted as redundant?

I'd say keep it, but use it to fine tune questions.

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