Although the "How do I ask a good question" page clearly states grammar and word usage related questions are welcome...There have also been helpful comments amid all the useless markings for posting inappropriate questions so I doubt they are incomprehensible. Furthermore I am redirected to "duplicates" that allegedly cover the same topic where they have little to do with it.

  • Ironically, this post too will get downvotes and deleted soon.
    – Grizzly
    Mar 17, 2016 at 4:32
  • @JEL: L.White has only asked 6 questions including this one, it's not hard to find all of the closed ones.
    – herisson
    Mar 17, 2016 at 5:08
  • 1
    @sumelic, not hard, but it would be more informative if L. White said which closures/duplicates were annoying, no?
    – JEL
    Mar 17, 2016 at 5:11
  • 1
    I commented on the lack of detail in one of your questions. A number of your other questions could also do with more detail.
    – Lawrence
    Mar 17, 2016 at 6:57
  • Can you answer the "I thought you loved me" one? I really cant find an answer to it. Is this subjunctive? If it is where is the difference between "I thought you loved" and "I thought you would love me" ?
    – L.White
    Mar 17, 2016 at 7:04
  • 3
    Both of the posted answers to that question are brief but reasonably accurate explanations of why the correct form is loved. Were those answers not helpful to you? The awkward thing about English Language & Usage is that it isn't geared toward providing simple explanations for people who have trouble with advanced terminology. The unfortunately named English Language Learners site might be a better place to obtain very straightforward answers—even if you've spoken English all your life.
    – Sven Yargs
    Mar 17, 2016 at 7:09
  • I would express it this way: Today I think to myself, "X loves me." But a week from now, if the ugly truth comes out that X in fact doesn't care a whit for me, I might say to X, "I thought [last Thursday, so in the past] that you loved [also in the past, since I know better now] me." Do you see how framing the thought in the past (via the past-tense form of the verb) takes the thing being thought into the past with it (also via a past-tense form of that verb)? I don't know if there is a simpler way to put it.
    – Sven Yargs
    Mar 17, 2016 at 7:15
  • Hmm I am still confused although your explanations are probably great. The question regarding the subjunctive didnt really help either I still cant find the correlation. The equivalent sentence in my native language ( german ) would probably be "Ich dachte du liebst mich" in case any of you are familiar with it, which is using two different tenses.( past and present). Is "I thought you would love me" even valid or does it not make any sense?
    – L.White
    Mar 17, 2016 at 7:39
  • Found another example that might showcase my problem : Person A "Bills enjoying that cigar". B "I thought he didnt smoke?" Clearly because the guy answering is surprised that the other guy is smoking.
    – L.White
    Mar 17, 2016 at 7:50
  • I've edited one of your questions, cast my vote to reopen, and I have suggested to the mods that it should be migrated to ELL, there are some excellent contributors who will no doubt answer your question (which sumelic improved vastly).
    – Mari-Lou A
    Mar 17, 2016 at 8:36
  • @Grizzly - It's not really ironic. The reasons (though I haven't checked the questions) are usually pretty well explained in the close reason and the comments, which are often helpful, and this kind of post from a confused early user are frequent. If users took a mere few weeks to get to know the site, and gave commenters the benefit of the doubt, much of this would be circumvented. Mar 17, 2016 at 15:00
  • @SvenYargs There are no vaguely accurate answers on that page. Incidentally, it's not appropriate for us to present this bit of interesting and important grammar as a normal piece of reported speech/thinking. In reported speech we can use the present tense to describe facts that are true now even when the report was in the past: She said that you live in this house here compare with *I always thought you live in this house here. Mar 17, 2016 at 15:01
  • @L.White - Your frustration is not uncommon for newcomers, and it's not something the site takes any pleasure in. One thing you keep stating is "the guidelines say it's ok..." Guidelines fit within a framework of other guidelines. You can't grab hold of one and insist you're in the right without reading the others and giving them the same weight. The help section also has other guidelines, which when taken together will be more helpful to your understanding of the site. Mar 17, 2016 at 15:53
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    @Araucaria: On grammatical analysis, parts of speech, and similar things, I am a complete amateur. I have (I hope) a fairly sophisticated intuitive grasp of what sounds right and what doesn't in written English for professional publication, but I don't have the training to explain why one verb form (for example) is preferable to another, even in that setting. So, really, I shouldn't weigh in on questions like the poster's here. But the temptation to "help out" is sometimes very strong and causes me to venture beyond the rather narrow limits of my competence.
    – Sven Yargs
    Mar 17, 2016 at 16:23
  • 2
    @SvenYargs I think your answer in the comments here explains why proficiently (unlike the answers on the actual Q), I'm just pointing out that the grammar if think and know is exceptional and not intuitive. Your comments to OP were useful, I think :) Mar 17, 2016 at 16:25

3 Answers 3


As of the time of writing this response, you have 8 questions. One is open with an unaccepted answer. Two were migrated to a more appropriate site. Two were marked as duplicates. Three were marked as needing more detail (two of these were deleted automatically after a period of inactivity).

Six out of your 8 questions were on-topic for the site but didn't meet our guidelines for asking. You are getting down- and close votes because your questions do not have enough information for us to answer them. If you feel the duplicates don't apply, it is up to you to edit your post to explain in detail why the duplicate doesn't answer your question. That reassures us that you actually read the duplicate and the answers and thought about how it applies to your question.

I'm glad you read the part of the Help Center that described the scope of the site. Please also take the time to read about how to ask good questions, kinds of questions that aren't a good fit for the site as well as the section about what to do about closed questions, and then let us know if you have additional questions.


As a close voter of the "love/loved" question, I thought I would give you my reason, although it's explicit in the answers above.*

Your original question consisted of the title and this one-line body:

Why is it loved here? I think it is correct but do not know why.

I closed it for lack of research. Although it's not easy to find the guideline for this before the question is closed, one of the major close reasons we have is lack of research. Unfortunately one often finds out only when it's posted as the close reason. That guideline is way towards the bottom of Asking on the right hand side: How do I ask a good question?.

Research just means telling us what you found when you looked it up, even if all it did was confuse you.

There's nothing indicating that you did any research when you originally posted your question.

Had your question initially included all the detail it does now, I would not have voted to close it. I've voted to reopen, even though I think it's a better fit on English Language Learners (which is not only for non-native speakers.)

*When someone raises an issue in meta with a question I've closed, I usually feel compelled to give my reason.

  • I've cast the final reopen vote - the question is now open.
    – Lawrence
    Mar 17, 2016 at 16:09

None of your questions are in conformity with our rules and guidelines and they are off-topic questions. We don't encourage a question that has no research efforts on your own. I believe you deleted a few questions with my comments to them and they were all general reference or too basic questions for English Language and Usage.

Here are FAQ for Stack Exchange sites and the link that you can read. Some of them are in our Help Center.

When you find the duplicate doesn't answer your question, you need to edit your question and explain why the duplicate is not helping you in detail so that we can start to vote to reopen it.

Everything is on your own here. We don't help those who don't help themselves. It's up to you.

My best advice is you can visit our sister site English Language Learners (ELL), but please make sure you take the tour and visit their Help Center before posting any question. That's what migrating a question is for and one of your questions was migrated to ELL.

Still you don't seem to have an account on English Language Learners. If you post an off-topic question on ELL, your question will be closed. Remember this.

Search and research Have you thoroughly searched for an answer before asking your question? Sharing your research helps everyone. Tell us what you found and why it didn’t meet your needs. This demonstrates that you’ve taken the time to try to help yourself, it saves us from reiterating obvious answers, and above all, it helps you get a more specific and relevant answer!

  • So I have looked at it (if the 2 minute guide is what you are referring to) and it says I am allowed to ask questions regarding grammar and word usage. Id appreciate it if you were able to tell me why my questions dont comply with those guidelines. I was unable to research my questions because I didnt know what to look for. I have gone through various grammar guides and havent found answers which required me to ask the questions here.
    – L.White
    Mar 17, 2016 at 6:04
  • @L.White You need to tell us what you found and how it doesn't help you and what still bothers you. Then, your question becomes more objective and clear. What have you found about this question Why past tense in “I thought you loved me”?? If you can't tell the difference between "I thought you loved me" and "I thought you would love me", it is better for you to ask the question on ELL. Not here. Why do you think the question about "How good do you think it is" was migrated to ELL?
    – user140086
    Mar 17, 2016 at 6:08

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