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A now-closed question about grammar, ("As pets being welcome, she stayed at the hotel with her dog.") while not well expressed, fell squarely within the top two topics listed for ELU:

Questions on the following topics are welcomed here: Word choice and usage, Grammar, ...

The OP presented two valid grammatical constructs alongside a third construct that improperly mashed together elements of the first two. On its face, the question was whether the third construct was valid.

The question could have been better articulated, but it certainly was a good question. It went beyond basic usage, and required more than rudimentary analysis. It implicitly sought an explanation as to why the third construct was improper while the other two constructs were ok.

One of the comments of a user voting to close the question was, "about whether something is grammatical, not about grammar; removed fluf." The other comment was, "Not suitable for this site."

While the OP didn't explain their motivation, it was clear enough that they were asking, "Why are these two constructs ok, but this other construct not ok?" That is a question about grammar.

Perhaps the list of topics needs to be revised to better explain the nuances between desirable questions about grammar versus undesirable questions about whether a particular sentence is grammatically correct. Also, the popup guide in the question composition user interface could do a better job of alerting new users about that distinction.

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  • I would suggest that the question be edited to make it on-topic. Closure simply means that it's off-topic; it doesn't always mean it's irretrievable. If you feel so strongly, why not edit it? – Andrew Leach Jun 24 at 5:52
  • @AndrewLeach: Great point. I'll do that. I'm still learning my way around. – Matthew Rips Jun 24 at 6:21
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    I've approved the edit, but it's still proof-reading ("Is this correct? Why not?") Have a look at the help text for this sort of question. The question needs full details of the doubt which caused the question to be asked. – Andrew Leach Jun 24 at 6:32
  • Thank you. Before posting, above, I read the entirety of the help text. And, following your suggestion, I just re-read it. The OP's implied question is qualitatively different: A and B work, so why doesn't C work? The answer can't be looked up in a book, and probably would not be obtained via English Learners. If not here, then where should that question be posed? – Matthew Rips Jun 24 at 6:52
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    But that's not what you have asked. "Is this third sentence grammatically valid, and if not, why not?" is not the same as "This sounds really off and I haven't found any similar examples, so it's almost certainly not correct. What causes this version to be wrong?" This may seem to be nit-picking, but we get so many of this sort of question that if a question is worth saving it's worth doing well! – Andrew Leach Jun 24 at 6:59
  • The problem with almost all closed grammar questions is that the questioners bring incorrect ideas about what has to be Right or Wrong and then ask whether some sentence is OK, without presenting any reason to think it should be or not. Andrew's comment above is an example of how to do that right, but clearly not the only one. Why do you suspect it? Tell us. – John Lawler Jul 3 at 14:46

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