I refer to this question (now on hold) and the moderator's repeated observation that the answers, and question, are opinion-based. Isn't the issue that synonyms (like translation questions) are going to have a certain nuance in the answer? I would think half of the questions here have to be closed if a brief unique correct answer, in the style of a high-school math assignment, is required?

  • 2
    Did you look at previous meta-questions on this topic? Every answer on the site is opinion-based, but some are, in the cavil of your peer moderators, more opinion-based than others. Single-word-request (SWR) answers are notoriously opinion-based, the opinion of the asker being the sole criterion for a 'right' answer. In my opinion, either single-word-requests shouldn't be allowed, or they shouldn't be closed on account of their soliciting opinion-based answers.
    – JEL
    Commented Feb 27, 2019 at 22:09

1 Answer 1


You're correct that synonyms may have different nuances. The main issue I see with hazoriz's question is that it doesn't specify what kind of nuance is desired. The provided sample sentence ("That woman is a henpecker") doesn't show whether a word with e.g. positive or negative connotations is desired. It doesn't show whether hazoriz is looking for a somewhat polite, or a highly insulting term.

This has already caused confusion: in the comments, Jason Bassford suggested that "the question itself is perfectly neutral", but in fact, it's evidently ambiguous.

As described in the tag guidelines, word request questions are supposed to

specify the criteria by which the suggested word will be accepted


show that you searched for a suitable word before asking the question

  • So you're saying that the moderator who put the question on hold should've put it on hold it because it was unclear and didn't show a research effort, or one or the other of those two?
    – JEL
    Commented Feb 27, 2019 at 22:41
  • 1
    @JEL: In general, I don't think any questions should be put on hold just because they lack "research effort". Effort isn't the point, but showing research would have been helpful in this case because it would give a better sense of what kind of words the original poster did or didn't want. As it is, the question only mentions "henpecker" and speculates that it would be an inappropriate word because "henpecked" was originally derived from "hen".
    – herisson
    Commented Feb 27, 2019 at 22:47
  • The only reason for my comment was to explain why I removed the pejorative-language tag. I didn't find the question itself to be ambiguous. Commented Feb 27, 2019 at 23:35
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    @JasonBassford: I'm saying that the question is (in practice) ambiguous because you understood it to be neutral, but two other users understood it to be asking for a pejorative term.
    – herisson
    Commented Feb 27, 2019 at 23:36
  • @sumelic I don't think anybody thought it was asking for pejorative words. In fact, the only words that have been clearly pejorative came in an answer that has since been deleted. That tag was only added because of that specific answer—as was explained in another meta discussion. Anybody is free to give any kind of answer they want. Almost no question on the site specifies that it wants pejorative or non-pejorative words. That doesn't make most questions on the site ambiguous. Commented Feb 27, 2019 at 23:42
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    The harridan answer has been deleted. This is ridiculous, we're censoring=deleting posts that have legitimately answered a SWR, but nobody dares to delete a line from a song because that might be misconstrued.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Feb 28, 2019 at 12:06
  • 3
    What is the criteria for deleting posts: gratuitous vulgarity, veiled political messages, overt sexism, rabid racism or because you didn't add an original thought in an answer? All of the above? Then be consistent.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Feb 28, 2019 at 12:20
  • @Mari-LouA I agree with you about the deletion of the singling out of the second-highest voted answer. I found that to be capricious and irresponsible. At least in terms of objectively applied standards. Commented Feb 28, 2019 at 14:43

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