Here are two questions, both about adjectives being used as adverbs:

The former was asked in September, got one answer quickly and another in December (neither accepted), and was recently bumped to the home page. The latter was asked a day ago and summarily migrated to ELL.

I would have thought the second question was a good fit for the site; nevertheless, I'm not challenging the migration. The rules are what they are, and if the second question is unsuitable here, that's okay. I'm merely trying to get some clarity for myself regarding said rules: to understand what makes that query unsuitable, particularly when the first is worthy of being featured on the home page.

  • Questions that have no answers, or answers which have not been either accepted or upvoted are bumped by the community bot once a month (I think that's the time lapse).
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Feb 12, 2017 at 9:18

1 Answer 1


The difference, at least as I saw it, is that in the case of the migrated question, the asker was an English-language learner who wanted to know whether they simply had to learn certain collocations by heart or whether there was some other way. The "learner" part seemed to call out for ELL to me.

Also, their question seems to be confusing the "talk slow" or "play rough" scenario of a flat adverb from the "rest contented" and "become angry" scenario of verbs that simply take adjectival complements to describe their subjects not their verbs, and so no adverbial application should be imputed of them.

Perhaps I was expecting too much of the ELL community's strengths in explaining that, but I was thinking that the asker would be better served on ELL.

For what it’s worth, I didn’t override the community here: it had already had the requisite three votes for migration before I came upon it. I could have blocked the migration by closing it in some other way, but barring a moderatorial override it would almost certain have been migrated there anyway. I figured it was better to hurry it along the path that the community had already weighed in on it.

  • As far as I can tell, those arguments apply equally well to the non-migrated question: the asker says, English isn't my first language and I'm sure the rules I learned would only accept slowly as the right word, because it follows a verb. So is the situation that the migration for the "easy" question was justified, but not migrating the "slow" question (and bumping it to the homepage) was an oversight?
    – verbose
    Commented Feb 12, 2017 at 0:48
  • @verbose Whatever close votes there ever were on the earlier question have by now aged completely away, so feel free to vote to close it if you feel like it. But we do have duplicate flat-adverb questions.
    – tchrist Mod
    Commented Feb 12, 2017 at 0:50
  • 1
    I don't have the rep to cast close votes. 😬 And if we do have flat-adverb questions here, then I am not entirely convinced the easy question should have been migrated; it's not a concept beginners typically need to grapple with, nor is it readily grasped by them. I'll chalk what (still) seems like an inconsistency to me up to the vagaries of liminality, I guess.
    – verbose
    Commented Feb 12, 2017 at 0:57

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