My question Alternative to trumped was recently closed for being opinion-based. However, the tag has 300+ pages of questions similar to mine.

Why is there the tag if questions that use it are closed? My question was not horrible or unusual, it had research and I specifically asked for one word in a given scenario. There are hundreds of these questions on this site - yet mine specifically got closed while many others stayed open.

Is this either

  • a faulty tag which should have further clarified guidelines

  • a separate rule I don't know yet

  • or was my question closed for a different reason?

I have looked at Against single-word-requests, What's wrong with single-word-requests?, and Warn people of the rules of single-word-requests before posting. It seems to say that questions with more thought/research and a sample sentence in them could stay open. I thought mine had a decent amount of research to it and it had a sample sentence so those wouldn't have been reasons of closure.

It also sounds like high rep users in this community dislike single-word-requests, which may make sense: but we should have further clarification on this. If it is an unspoken rule to not ask these types of questions, could we make that more clear?

It is tough for a user like me to spend time asking what I thought was a high-quality question, and then having it closed with very little communication behind what I did wrong.

Many thanks.

Update: The question has now been reopened.

  • 1
    I couldn't begin to divine closers' reasons here, but... As the comments suggest, you asked for a different word to be used in a situation where it really is the only word to use. Had you posited a different situation then it may not have been closed. Opinion-based is a really odd closure reason, though.
    – Andrew Leach Mod
    Commented Feb 11, 2021 at 8:00
  • In my experience on this site (ELU), question closures are more often based on personal or political considerations than they are based on facts or valid reasoning. In this case, a number of good candidates could replace 'trump'. Peter Shor's suggestion ('triumph') is one, and is perhaps the best available; others include 'ruff', 'honour' (more narrow), 'trumph', and 'ruffer'. However, nothing keeps you from exhuming 'triumph', brushing the worms off, and gussying it up for contemporary use. You might accept an answer when and if the question is re-opened; you can always change the acceptance.
    – JEL
    Commented Feb 12, 2021 at 19:44

1 Answer 1


I agree with Andrew Leach's comment that closure as opinion-based is a bit odd, given that to some degree all SWRs are seeking an opinion on what might be the right word to use. However, I'm guessing that what triggered the VTC was the question being based on your own purely personal (and possibly idiosyncratic) opinion, i.e. that an alternative to a word with a very specific meaning is necessary because you have a personal bias against a person who happens to have that word as their surname.

To ask for an alternative word in that context is like asking for an alternative word for coronavirus because you don't like a certain brand of Mexican beer.

In my view, perhaps the question could have been left open but heavily downvoted as "not useful", which is how Stack Exchange would expect us to treat such posts. And (again, in my opinion) the best answer would have been "Trump has a very specific meaning in card games [insert definition, etymology etc here...], and there is no alternative that would make sense."

However, given the heightened political sensitivity regarding the former POTUS, and the likelihood that on our site in particular the question was therefore likely to elicit answers motivated by political views rather than answers responding to the word's contextual usage, I suspect closure is a good outcome, and if "opinion-based" wasn't the right reason, then "lack of research" (regarding the use of the word in card games, its etymology, and why no alternative is recognised in that context) may also have sufficed.

  • I appreciate the feedback, although I disagree that the best way to handle my question would be to "heavily downvote (it)" or closing it for "lack of research". If I had found that there weren't any good synonyms for my needed word, I wouldn't have asked my question. However, I thoroughly researched my word and provided a good sampling of it in my question. I do still believe that there are alternatives to my word and I am asking so I can find them. Commented Feb 22, 2021 at 17:00
  • And, then you then state that my question is not appropriate due to "heightened political sensitivity regarding the former POTUS". (a) my question is asking for a word to avoid using the name of the former POTUS, and (b) I do not believe that the best course of action would be to simply avoid asking questions about the former POTUS. After all, you do have a trumpism tag. Commented Feb 22, 2021 at 17:02
  • I wasn't aware of the trumpism tag. If you read the tag description, you'll see why it's an inappropriate tag for your question. I've edited your question to remove the tag. Commented Feb 23, 2021 at 21:42

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