We just got in rapid succession these two soi-disant “questions” over on main:

Strictly speaking as questions go, those are imperatives not interrogatives, of which we seem to be getting more and more of the former type, basically too-localized/personal demands for assistance instead of legitimate inquiries about general matters whose answers might someday help anyone else but the original querent.

But that isn’t my point. Rather, my questions are:

  1. Why oh why oh why isn’t “Please help” on that stoplist?
  2. Is this a per-site stoplist or a global one across all SE sites?
  3. Who decides the stoplist: SE staff or per-site moderators?

The first question is the one I really wish I am looking to see answered here. The other two are merely auxiliary followups to the first, more matters of curiosity.


I know there exists a stoplist that blocks certain things from being included titles, such as problem. Yes, of course people can just write pr0blem. That’s the same as exist for things like fukc and such.

Yet still we have a problem filter yet no other, yet I do not understand why.

For reference, please see:

I understand the reasons behind it, but I personally find the obsequious pleas of “Please help me!” to be far more irritating than Dr. Lawler’s “What the fuck just happened?”

Some current stats on questions with “Please help” in them include:

One proposal is to auto-stick “Please help” questions in the Low Quality queue. I suppose that would extend to the recent spate of 11,381 plz help me questions as well.

I guess it is a sempiternal battle, but why does problem get singled out?

Can’t we get some sort of assistance for some of these other ones as well?

(But we should probably let “Prithee masters, I beg that ye kindly holpen me” slide. :)



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