Many questions, that are good in some sense, get closed; some are appropriate for other SE sites, some are better for discussion, some are for lists of words, etc.
To answer these questions would be wrong for here at SE (not just ELU but any SE site), but it seems churlish to just close and be done with them. I feel like -some- kind of pointer would help.
Recently while searching for possible alternatives to an ELU question, I found a number of QA sites that had informal answers to a similar question. Since those sites were discussive (?) in nature, it seemed a reasonable alternative (not a competitor) to ELU.
There are a number of different situations (the following is not exclusive):
- the question is not appropriate for ELU, is appropriate for SE but there is no existing SE site for it. Say, a question about Anglo-Saxon, or a translation from some language to English.
- the question is for an English language reference work (this may actually be on-topic, but it seems to me that it was off-topic at some point).
- the question is for basic EFL help (refer to some EFL site?).
- the question is prompting a discussion (dict.leo.de is excellent quality for this kind of back and forth discussion of translation issues).
- the question is for lyric interpretation (not the thing I'd want to attract here at ELU, but to be honest, I have those questions sometimes, and it'd be nice to know the appropriate outlet for them).
- the question is about language etiquette or social situations involving language. These are often deemed off-topic, but are still legitimate.
Some questions are just plain dumb. Others are not , they just don't fit well with ELU or SE. The direction of this is that we want to shut down inappropriate questions, but not alienate the questioner.
Would it be reasonable (for closeable but not crap questions) to give them a pointer to another site where they can ask their question and be more likely to get a helpful answer? Or would this simply allow/encourage questions we'd prefer not to have here?