I was going to propose a tag definition for and I found that there are at the moment 73 questions tagged and 304 tagged .

I see no reason why they should not be merged or at least marked as synonyms of each other. (I'm asking here because I don't have enough rep on either tag)

  • 2
    I'm not sure they should be merged. Layout is a lot more broad and can also refer to websites, posters, logos and lots of things that are not on pages... I think page-layout is a lot more print-oriented than is layout
    – PieBie Mod
    Jun 28, 2017 at 13:58
  • the definition of Page-Layout says "Ask anything related to laying out print, web and other types of pages." which is basically what I was going to write as the definition for Layout. I'm not convinced we need both tags.
    – Luciano
    Jun 28, 2017 at 14:07
  • Also, a poster is a page. And screens (web) are covered in the Page-Layout definition. If anything I'd eliminate page-layout in favor of the other tag.
    – Luciano
    Jun 28, 2017 at 14:10
  • 1
    I'd opt for synonimizing them and favoring layout Jun 28, 2017 at 14:18
  • 2
    Hmm, I think "layout" is better. "page-layout" implies it excludes anything that isn't explicitly a page
    – Cai
    Jun 28, 2017 at 14:20
  • 2
    I would vote to merge these. Arguably there might be some differences but overall 'layout' will generally cover most subjects, whether its pages or something else.
    – Lucian
    Jun 30, 2017 at 21:02

5 Answers 5


Ok, so after some more thought I've slightly changed my mind on how I think we should handle this. My suggestion...

We should have two separate tags:

  1. This would then be used, much as it is now, for questions about composition and layout in the context of desktop publishing and the design of "pages" (which doesn't actually have to be a physical "page" at all... a web page for example completely fits here).

    And then anything about "layout" in the more general sense should be tagged...

  2. Composition relates more broadly to the placement and arrangement of elements. So questions about cropping images, the placing of elements within an image, the arrangement of elements in an animation or illustration, etc. are more appropriate here.


The tag should then be merged in to and made a synonym of . The rationale being that 'layout' is much broader in general language and when not being used as a contraction of 'page layout' is more synonymous with 'composition'.

'Composition' is a broader term that is still perfectly appropriate for questions about page layout, so there's no harm in questions about page layout being tagged 'composition'... whereas if we made 'layout' a synonym of 'page-layout' (or the other way around), we would end up with questions about, e.g. arranging elements in an illustration, tagged 'page-layout'.

The tag wikis for both tags would need be updated to reflect and explain this distinction.


It's worth noting that there are also compositions in After Effects, which is currently used for on a few questions... I'm not sure if there needs to be another tag for that or if can just be removed from those questions?

  • I agree with this.
    – Ryan
    Jul 10, 2017 at 14:41
  • I think if AE needs to use the tag for their own thing then a tag for it specifically should be created, but otherwise I'd remove it from those Qs Jul 11, 2017 at 12:13

I'm somewhat torn between this merger. I do think each are similar but they're also different in their rightful manner for example:

Layout may refer to Page layout, the arrangement of visual elements on a page


From reviewing the tags:

From a granular perspective I get why both tags would be valid as mentioned in CAI's comment of:

"page-layout" implies it excludes anything that isn't explicitly a page

However, I do not think it's an issue to remove for . From a site searching perspective print designers might search for page-layout compared to layout so maybe further discussion about this should be done in chat.


My new suggestion after extensive talking to others as well as reading questions currently in and is as follows:

We create a new tag, desktop-publishing and turn it into a synonym and merger for . All of the questions under page-layout, would fit under desktop-publishing with far less confusion.

We then merge all of the questions tagged layout into composition. Almost none of the questions currently tagged Layout are restricted to strictly layout. They almost all include other elements such as color, size, etc. I found only one question that is solely related to layout.

Thus we are left with two tags:

  • Desktop-Publishing
  • Composition

Questions such as website layout would easily fall under Composition which also solves the issue and debate some members had over whether a website should still be considered the same way a "Page" should be.

  • As an end user not a part of much of the discussion to get to this point, I have no idea what "desktop publishing" is supposed to mean or what types of questions it should go on and would never think to use it on any questions that I make Jul 11, 2017 at 13:51
  • @ZachSaucier that's fine? I don't think I've ever seen you discuss desktop publishing.. its the correct industry term for the actual act of laying out print media. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Desktop_publishing
    – Ryan
    Jul 11, 2017 at 13:53

I'm just going to mention there is also

I guess I'm old school but I would never refer to any of this stuff as "layout."

There is no relevant "Layout" on wikipedia because it's not really an industry term in English. It's a condensed form of Page Layout.

Design Comp / Comp is much more common across the print and digital spectrum. I don't work on web design but aren't those even called Layer Comps?

My suggestion is to definitely get rid of Layout. Then I'd go as far as saying merge Page-Layout into Composition which also solves the concerns some of you have with people thinking the word Page must mean its only for print.

So we are left with one Tag,

  • 4
    See, I'd say the opposite. Composition is a much wider concept. Composition is something you use in photography, art, whatever. A "layout" means a lot more to me.
    – Cai
    Jun 28, 2017 at 19:59
  • Also "layer comps" are a mostly unrelated PS feature aren't they? (And a completely unrelated concept in AE)
    – Cai
    Jun 28, 2017 at 20:01
  • 3
    Related discussion: graphicdesign.stackexchange.com/questions/94043/…
    – Ryan
    Jun 28, 2017 at 20:23
  • Composition is a much broader topic than layout. Devil's advocate: How about we merge "layout" and "page-layout" and "composition" into just a "design" tag?
    – Wildcard
    Jul 5, 2017 at 0:21

I think all the answers given here are valid and have their own merit. Cai, Ryan and Darth have clearly thought long and hard on this and have proposed solutions that are all good. After a good chat session I have come to my own conclusion, which I will add here for completeness sake*.

  1. "page-layout" is too reminiscent of print only. A video can conceivably have a layout, yet it is very definitely not a page. Therefore, "page-layout" is a subset of "layout".

  2. "layout" is a subset of "composition", according to this answer, with which I agree.

  3. So: < <

This means that every question about page-layout or layout is also a question about composition. So we only really need the one tag:

*While I come to the same conclusion as Ryan, my way of getting there is different. I'm not as language centered, maybe because I'm not a native speaker.

  • IMO it's worth having page-layout still not because it's a separate topic (I think your comparisons are correct), but because more specific tags can be helpful Jul 11, 2017 at 12:12

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