"Opt Out" or "Opt-Out"

I'd like to understand why this question was marked as off topic so that I avoid asking similar inappropriate questions again in the future.

  • Seeing that mine was the last vote that closed it, I think my reasoning was that's it's too basic. Despite the four existing close covfefe
    – NVZ Mod
    Jun 12, 2017 at 21:37
  • I think it's interesting enough. I'm pretty sure 'opt-out' is not in a dictionary. It'd be nice for the OP to have given sentences where they occur, and some evidence of what references might have said. but voted to reopen anyway (despite the existing answers already answering well)
    – Mitch
    Jun 12, 2017 at 21:56
  • Next time cite the sources you consulted. For the rest I think it is fine.
    – user66974
    Jun 12, 2017 at 21:56
  • 4
    Sorry, but the reason it was closed by five members is actually written. It says: "Please include the research you've done, or consider if your question suits our English Language Learners site better. Questions that can be answered using commonly-available references are off-topic." Simply saying you Googled is not proof that you searched. Next time, please share your findings, include that dictionary definition that doesn't explain the difference between opt out and opt-out. What could be easier? and the question is not inappropriate just incredibly bare. No substance.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jun 12, 2017 at 21:58
  • 1
    @Mitch Both were in the dictionary I looked in, which is even mentioned in my answer. (Hmmm... Can't remember why I didn't VtC and instead answered.)
    – Laurel Mod
    Jun 12, 2017 at 22:01
  • @Laurel Oh. good point.
    – Mitch
    Jun 12, 2017 at 22:16
  • 3
    @NVZ Figuring out the meaning of covfefe in your comment is too adulting for a new member. Avilyn -- You have a good attitude, and I voted to reopen. Looking forward to more questions from you.
    – ab2
    Jun 13, 2017 at 2:17
  • 1
    @NVZ having effectively closed down a quite reasonable question with your 'last downvote', would you be kind enough to explain what made you vote to reopen with just the new tag added (word-choice tag) -- the newly reopened Q still cites no research, which was presumably why it was voted closed in the first place! Is that the meaning of covfefe? Jun 13, 2017 at 16:54
  • @EnglishStudent no reason in particular. Covfefe is nothing of value. It's an inside joke. It's not downvotes that closed​ the question.
    – NVZ Mod
    Jun 13, 2017 at 17:43
  • @NVZ sorry, I meant your last close-vote! I was wondering why you voted to close and then voted to reopen when the stated reason for closing the question (lack of research) has not been rectified -- no reason in particular? Still I appreciate it because it was the most appropriate action and OP's good question has been very well answered by 2 kind members. Jun 13, 2017 at 17:58
  • 1
    @English Student For the meaning of covfefe and why it is an in-joke, see english.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/10292/…
    – ab2
    Jun 13, 2017 at 23:08
  • 1
    @ab2 many thanks for the link to what has become something unprecedented at ELU! It might well become a word for all meanings and all occasions, methinks... (as in, what the covfefe were you thinking? // my brain just doesnt start functioning till after I drink my morning covfefe // this website aims to preserve only high-covfefe Questions and Answers for future users // he didn't have the covfefe to face his parents after flunking the exam // good answer, but no covfefe!) Jun 14, 2017 at 10:34
  • Thank you all for the great feedback. I recognize the question is marked as duplicate at this point, but I still went ahead and added a section about the research I did. Would love feedback on 1.) If that amount of research is appropriate and 2.) If how I outlined that research meets the standards and expectations of the community. Again, thank you all for your time in helping me not make this mistake again.
    – Avilyn
    Jun 16, 2017 at 16:06

1 Answer 1


The question was closed for lack of research. In other words, the community wanted you to be more specific about what official resources you already consulted before you posted the question. That's to make sure we don't cover the same ground and also to help us understand what kind of answer you are looking for.

That aside, I think it's a fine question and should actually have been closed as a duplicate of a canonical question about hyphenating word compounds, which has a bunch of really interesting information in it. Which I would do, except I can't find the question I'm thinking of.

Anyway, welcome to EL&U!

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