A veteran SE member recently posted this question here on ELU — an increasingly rare and and very welcome syntax question, worthy of our site:

This question was difficult to format well, was closed in the first instance and then reopened after being edited. The OP was harangued into splitting their question into different parts - although, in my opinion, these were minor aspects of a quite simple question.

I therefore requested in my edit to this Meta-post here ...

... that the question remain closed, as the OP had spent a long time rejigging their question into three new separate questions.

However, the OP's original question, and the answer that I gave there have now been flagged for deletion by a member here (edit: since the posting of this question, 2 members). I feel that the answer, which I spent a reasonable amount of care and time over, is of benefit to readers - even if the question has been closed. The question itself has 7 upvotes. The answer has ten upvotes and has been accepted by the OP. The question itself currently has 4 reopen votes.

If you would like to preserve this answer or this content for future readers here, please vote to reopen this question. This will prevent it's imminent deletion. One reopen vote will do the job.

Edit note:

This question has been reopened, which saved its content and the content of its answers for future users. Thank you to the re-opener. There seems to be a problem at the moment with the over-zealous closing of linguistics questions (imo). I hope we don't let this spread to the overzealous deleting of linguistics content.

  • 4
    The problem was never that it was a linguistics question, but that it was too broad, asking three unrelated questions! Nov 17, 2016 at 5:01
  • 1
    How about these 100% duplicate questions? Nouns vs. nouns used as adjectives and Verbs vs. gerunds vs. something else? and Adjectives vs. determinatives? I find the OP's behavior unhelpful and detrimental to ELU because it just copied and pasted the question you wanted to reopen. Any idea on how to deal with these 4 questions? It's just mess
    – user140086
    Nov 17, 2016 at 10:30
  • 1
    @Rathony The OP was explicitly requested to split up the original question into three separate questions. So they diligently followed the request. However, it does look messy.
    – Mitch
    Nov 17, 2016 at 17:14
  • 2
    @Mitch I didn't ask the OP to split up the original question into three separate questions by asking three different questions. He could have just asked two additional questions leaving one and I think that's the norm here.
    – user140086
    Nov 17, 2016 at 17:17
  • 1
    Possible duplicate of Can we reopen this question please? [Now re-CLOSED]
    – user140086
    Nov 21, 2016 at 11:38
  • @Rathony That was about opening a useful question. This question is about your vandalism of EL&U content via deletion. A completely different thing from closure or reopening. Nov 21, 2016 at 11:42
  • @Araucaria Be careful when you make a comment. Vandalism is defined as *the act of deliberately destroying or damaging property" as you showed it yourself in your edit here english.stackexchange.com/posts/358395/revisions. I reviewed the review queue and there was one close-vote to close your question as duplicate and I agreed to close it. That's my privilege given by this community.
    – user140086
    Nov 21, 2016 at 11:46
  • @Rathony Yes, you can. I can also point out that the close reason given is inaccurate. So, I repeat: this is not a dupe of that question. One might suspect that your reason, in fact, for wanting to close this question is because of the four down-votes your answer has here -which it has because members are unhappy with your treatment of the original OP. Nov 21, 2016 at 11:48

1 Answer 1


There seem to be three identical questions asked by the same OP before you posted this Meta question as follows:

Nouns vs. nouns used as adjectives asked on Nov 14 at 3:07

Verbs vs. gerunds vs. something else? asked Nov 14 at 3:11

"Those other people": Adjectives vs. determinatives asked Nov 14 at 7:26

It was quite surprising to find that

(1) it took only four minutes for the OP to write the second question

(2) all three additional questions are 100% identical to the question below other than changed titles and "It originally came from this closed question" added at the end.

Are these parts of speech correct?

(3) you posted this question after more than 27 hours passed since the third additional question was asked.

ELU seems to have a few options.

  1. Dupe-close or delete the first original question as three additional questions are exact duplicates. As other questions are 100% identical, I don't see any reason not to delete the first question.

  2. Edit the 2nd, 3rd and 4th questions to clarify what is being asked. There are too many unrelated example sentences and parts of speech.

When a question reads too broad, you should wait until the question is narrowed down with one specific question or two. If you answer such a question and when the question is split, it can create such mess that ELU has now.

Also, you should note that Stack Exchange has one question per post policy and when a question is too broad, we usually ask the OP to narrow it down before answering it. If you had waited until the question was edited, none of this mess would have been created in the first place.

Also, the OP doesn't seem to know how to ask a question on ELU. When a user with over 2K reputation points shows such a behavior, it is worrisome.

  • 1
    Those "three identical questions" are not identical at all. One is asking about gerunds, one is asking about the word other used as a modifier of a noun, one is asking about the difference between noun modifiers and adjectives. In what way are these three different questions identical? You understand identical, right? Nov 17, 2016 at 15:49
  • 6
    You've already upset the original OP, who has done his level best to please members and critics here. Your relentless carping is verging on bullying. Leave the OP alone. Nov 17, 2016 at 15:52
  • @Araucaria Did you read three questions? What makes you think those questions are not identical? How come all the contexts are same for three completely different questions? Now, do you defend the OP's behavior which is detrimental to ELU? What makes you think I've already upset the OP? Do you need to use "original" before OP? You understand what "OP" means, right?
    – user140086
    Nov 17, 2016 at 16:22
  • 1
    @Araucaria Nouns vs. nouns used as adjectives seems to be duplicate of Is this noun used as an adjective? and there are other questions that ask basically for the same thing such as Adjectives versus Noun Adjuncts. Now do you see why such too broad a question should be split? If you answer that kind of question, you can't close it as dupe.
    – user140086
    Nov 17, 2016 at 16:34

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .