I edited this question's title Why did Rem kill L? to avoid spoilers. Later on, it was rolled back. Should I not have edited it then?

I'm not quite sure that the title is needed to contain such spoiler. The fact that it is tagged as Death Note seems sufficient to suggest who is meant by 'shinigami' and 'character'

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The general consensus for questions is that you do not have to avoid spoilers.

As for the title, it just as stated in the post you linked.

The rule I've always followed is to include spoilers in your title only if it's required for the title to be searchable, and clearly indicate what the question is about. In other words, if you can make a good title without spoilers, do so; otherwise include spoilers. A good title is more important than spoilers. After all, the ignore tag feature will allow users to ignore any tags in a series they wish to avoid spoilers about.

I am not to sure how you see your replacement with Shinigami And Character as:

  • Why did the Shinigami Kill the character? would not make for a very good title
  • Why did Shinigami Kill L Which shinigami are we talking about?
  • Why did Rem Kill him? killed whom?

All with all, in this case including the spoiler makes for the best title, and also would most likely be the one most searched for when looking for a answer to such a question

A good title is always more important then avoiding spoilers

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  • How about just putting the real question in the post instead of the title? Can it still be searchable maybe? – BCLC Oct 15 '15 at 20:48
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    @BCLC Then what would you make your title. Keep in mind, the title still needs to describe your question. And the current one does a pretty good job at that. If I were you, I would just leave it as is. – Dimitri mx Oct 15 '15 at 21:00
  • Toshino Kyouko, 'Question about Rem and L' ? Based on experience, it doesn't seem that that's how stackexchange works, but... Questions about nationalities and languages in Death Note – BCLC Oct 15 '15 at 21:29
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    @BCLC Could be possible, but would be less fitting to the question. As for the one you linked. This question asks about a multitude, which makes the current tittle a better option then summing it all up. But if you want to discuss this in more detail, I think it would be a better option to continue in the chat – Dimitri mx Oct 15 '15 at 21:38
  • um okay, thanks, Toshino Kyouko – BCLC Oct 15 '15 at 21:58
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    Let me just say that I'm neutral here but one argument that comes to my head is: let's go out on a limb and say I hide every tag that I don't want to be spoiled for... Does this also work in chat? Will the question titles not pop up if I have the tags hidden on Stack Exchange? As far as I can tell all questions that get posted are echo'd into chat regardless of your settings. – Michael McQuade Oct 20 '15 at 2:22
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    @MichaelMcQuade No, your tag-hiding settings on the main site do not carry over into chat. – senshin Oct 20 '15 at 18:12

I don't really agree with the other answer.

I strongly advocate for avoiding spoilers in titles except when they are really, genuinely, 100% necessary for the post to make any sense. Keep in mind that when you google for an answer to some anime-related question, google indexes both the title and the body of the post, so stuff is still findable even if you're somewhat roundabout in the title. While I imagine the title is granted more weight, avoiding spoilers in the title still likely does little harm. I think that the benefit of avoiding spoiling users' experience with various shows outweighs the cost of losing some descriptiveness in the titles.

I also want to point out that while the claim "the ignore tag feature will allow users to ignore any tags in a series they wish to avoid spoilers about", is technically correct, it does not propose a practically useful course of action. Here's why:

Suppose that I'm Joe Blow, some dude who's only seen Naruto. One day, I come to Anime.SE and ask some questions about a Ninetales Uchiha Hokage Rasengan. While I'm here, I see some questions on the front page about this thing called "Death Note". That sounds like a pretty metal sort of thing, so I figure I'm going to go and watch that when I get a chance. But! As I'm browsing the front page, I see another question title that reads "Why did Rem kill L?" that's tagged with [death-note]. And then I watch the first few episodes of Death Note, and suddenly the context of that question becomes clear - I know who Rem is, I know who L is, and now I've been spoiled on the fact that Rem is going to kill L at some point!

There's the problem - users cannot, practically speaking, ignore tags for all shows they may want to watch in the future. If you know in advance that you want to avoid spoilers for X, sure, ignore [X]. But if you don't, what can you do to avoid spoilers? If the spoilers are right there in the titles, there's effectively nothing you can do. And that's the problem with putting big spoilers in titles.

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  • Brilliant. Hadn't considered that. Thanks senshin! To the downvoter, care to explain? I don't believe downvoting should be used to indicate disagreement – BCLC Oct 16 '15 at 19:09
  • Any recommendations for alternative title for that Rem/L question? – BCLC Oct 16 '15 at 19:10
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    Honestly, I would be happy with "Why did Rem kill this character?". It should come as no surprise that Rem kills people, and anybody who has seen the show will easily guess that this is an oblique reference to Rem killing L, since he's the most important character Rem kills. – senshin Oct 17 '15 at 19:48
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    @BCLC: Downvotes are used to indicate disagreement, at least in Meta sites on SE network. The topic of voting on meta just comes up on Meta.SO. – nhahtdh Oct 26 '15 at 10:21
  • @nhahtdh Sorry I meant to say I don't believe people should downvote just because they disagree – BCLC Oct 26 '15 at 11:26

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