Sometimes, the idea of what a {{trope}} is actually about gets lost somewhere along the way. Either new entries miss the point somehow, or the author just read the trope title and [[IThoughtItMeant thought they got the gist of it]]. This includes things like describing just anything remotely scary as Nightmare Fuel, when Nightmare Fuel was originally intended to be things you found unintentionally scary as a kid. (Hence why AccidentalNightmareFuel was created and NightmareFuel repurposed) Remember though, that Administrivia/TropesAreFlexible--what you think is decay may just be [[PlayingWithATrope unusual usage]] on second glance.

When this gets too bad, it may be necessary to [[EverythingYouWantedToKnowAboutChangingTitles rename the trope]] to avoid confusion, or remove the {{trope}}, or completely rewrite it. The [[http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/conversations.php?topic=renames Trope Repair Shop]] is where these cleanup discussions happen.

TropesAreNotBad applies even here, however; Trope Decay can sometimes be the result of the TVTropes HiveMind ''correcting'' a problem. This is particularly true when the original definition is [[TropesAreNotNarrow excessively specific]] or the trope experiences MissingSupertropeSyndrome. For an excellent example of both, witness the evolution of the trope BodyHorror. Body Horror was originally defined as a narrow set of VirusVictimSymptoms. Over the course of several years, however, the commonly accepted usage gradually drifted and expanded to become ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: the previously missing supertrope to all anatomy-related horror tropes. When brought into the repair shop, this "misused" form of the trope was voted by a significant margin to be the better definition and made official. The original narrow definition, meanwhile, is now the Traumatic Transformation internal subtrope of Body Horror's subtrope TransformationHorror.

See also CanonicalListOfSubtleTropeDistinctions and SquarePegRoundTrope.

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