In upcoming changes in a large plant genus, all infraspecific taxa were standardized on rank variety, a few dozen of which are currently in iNaturalist at subspecies rank.
When the only change is rank, and the taxon concept and taxon parent are unchanged (as in these cases), should this just be taken care of by editing the taxa and changing their rank, instead of creating taxon swaps?
I experimented with one and verified that the rank of an existing taxon can be changed by any curator. Is there any downside to dealing with simple subspecies <==> variety rank changes this way?
The downside I see to using swaps is the extra clutter on observations for changes that are trivial to all but plant taxonomists, and the confusion and questions they would create. (“What is the difference between Grisea rubens ssp. brunnea and Grisea rubens var. brunnea anyway, and why should I care?”)
Again, this is only for the special case of plant infraspecific ranks, where parent and concept (circumscription) are unchanged. In all other cases, rank changes should be accomplished by regular taxon changes.