As suggested on meta

It definitely doesn't belong in health. It appears to be totally on topic for English. From the help center: "Word choice and usage" is on topic. I'd ask on their meta why your question doesn't apply.

I've left a comment on the question @-ting at one of the closers making my case. They may explain nuances I'm not catching, or they may agree and vote to reopen.

I'm opening (yet another) discussion about the question Why is salt being referred to as “sodium”? which is currently on hold as "This question does not appear to be about English language and usage within the scope defined in the help center."

  • 2
    Responding as one of the close-voters. My issue was not so much about whether it belonged on one site or another, but that the question shows no research effort. Salt is sodium chloride. But food can also contain sodium phosphate, sodium citrate, monosodium glutimate, and well, here. Had your question shown some indication of you looking for this kind of information and modifying your question accordingly, I might not have voted as I did. However, thanks for showing perseverance and desire to get an explanation. – cobaltduck Apr 7 '16 at 12:41
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    I'm not sure I understand why you want the question to be opened (or do you not?) You have perfectly adequate answers (both in answer form and in comments); if you want the question reopened for posterity, then all you have to do is add your research to it, and bring it to the acceptable level (show your research and what still confuses you.) Now that you have answers, it should be very easy. Then it has a chance to be reopened. – anongoodnurse Apr 7 '16 at 13:55
  • Examples using salt (in english or other lang): DE/GB/F/I, DE, DE..NL – David Balažic Apr 7 '16 at 19:46
  • @choster (also see my prev. comment) HU ... – David Balažic Apr 7 '16 at 20:06
  • @DavidBalažic Thank you. I have incorporate these links into the question, and removed some of the contentious language (Europe does not constitute "all over the world"). – choster Apr 7 '16 at 20:20

I didn't see the Meta.SE post until now, but here is what I wrote there:

Your question in its current form also does not show sufficient research for EL&U word choice type questions. At minimum, you would need to define each term that you find confusing and explain why you are having trouble understanding the difference between the terms.

This may have been confusing for you because the close reason was custom, meaning that it showed up as this comment:

I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it's about medicine and health, and is unrelated to English as a language.

rather than it the close reason box, so you had only the generic close prominently displayed to you.


I see no reason to claim this isn't about English. This is, infact, a disambiguation issue.

I'm more on the fence regarding research. Research is a hard close reason to argue for or against objectively. The question did show that it understood salt was being referred to as sodium from the beginning. The question could have detailed this understanding by citing definitions.

The question has been edited to add research. I've edited it further to add detail to the research and remove some pointless snarky remarks. I'm on the side of finding a way to make it into a good question and opening it. In that order. If there is more you find wanting let me know.

  • The "snarky remarks" are/were there for answers like "google it (and you'll see salt is sodium chloride") given on one incarnation of this question. Also, "salt" is (one of the meanings of the word) a class of chemical compounds. – David Balažic Apr 8 '16 at 11:46
  • I understand. But we're trying to make the question better. Not drag it down to the level of its worst comment. Comments are meant to be ephemeral. – candied_orange Apr 8 '16 at 12:55

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