Possible duplicate of What the "primarily opinion-based" close reason is for.

I think there's a litmus test here that is misapplied.

As an example, Capitalizing Stages of Diseases is currently collecting POB close votes. It boils down to

Should I capitalize the names of the stages [Stage I, Stage II] or leave them in lowercase?

However, the correct answer is that the capitalization is primarily a matter of personal choice, and the correct answer is "either is okay". That's different than an opinion.

This seems to differ in character from questions such as the fictitious

Do adverbs destroy otherwise well-written passages?

This encourages diatribes and flame wars and sword fighting and all manner of debate. It isn't a matter of personal choice. Whether you write a passage with adverbs is your choice, but whether it destroys your passage is the opinion of the reader, and has no correct answer. "It's a personal choice" is a correct answer to the former.

I realize I've led the witnesses, but is this the intended interpretation? Are we over-using POB in this way?

  • I consider a question as primarily opinion-based when there are enough possible answers to it that you could take the top, say, five of them and there wouldn't be a clear winner. If something is undeniably a matter of personal choice, I would say that's the answer that should be accepted and it isn't primarily opinion-based at all. Commented Mar 29, 2016 at 14:43
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    The problem with the POB issue is that it is a POB issue. I suggest you answer questions you think are constructive despite the fact that they may carry a degree of POB. Users will eventually decide by CV or leaving the question open.
    – user66974
    Commented Mar 29, 2016 at 14:52
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    If it's a personal choice, how does that differ from being based primarily on an opinion? If you have equally valid choices, you decide based on your opinion. That's the whole point, unless I'm not understanding you correctly. Commented Mar 29, 2016 at 18:04
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    @medica My intention is this. If both capital & lower case are valid, then it's a personal choice to write using one or the other, and "it's a personal choice/opinion" is a correct answer to the question "which is correct", as opposed to "capital is correct" or "lowercase is correct"--in which case, there is no choice. This is useful, valid information for someone to know, or we may see that question again and again. If I ask which style is best, that's purely opinion--there is no "correct" answer, just a list of opinions. In other words, "it's up to you" is a correct answer, not an opinion.
    – jimm101
    Commented Mar 29, 2016 at 19:12
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    @medica ... maybe more succinctly: "It's up to you" isn't an opinion, it's a fact. We're closing questions based on the fact that you can use your own judgement, not just for the solicitation for judgements.
    – jimm101
    Commented Mar 29, 2016 at 19:13


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