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I've come back to this meta question on account of the 2014 Mod election. I have this to add: since the beginning of ELU, many answer-providing users have objected to being treated like dictionary operators. There are so many questions that could be easily answered by a simple dictionary lookup. There are so many questions that arise from a dictionary lookup....


14

In general, cross-posting is prohibited on the StackExchange network. Which means if you're seeking, fundamentally, a single answer, you should choose the best venue to get that answer, and ask only there. That said, if you want to ask a fundamentally different but related question, and you believed that new question would be better placed on a different ...


12

I don't think anyone who has read any of my comments here or on ELU would call me a "happy-close snob". I do however close questions which are duplicates, but not blindly. I look at the original question and the answers provided; if they are well formulated, authoritative and clear I consider the new question to have been answered satisfactorily. I hope that ...


11

Subjects which are on-topic are listed in the Help text. The English Language and Usage Stack Exchange is for linguists, etymologists, and (serious) English language enthusiasts. Questions on the following topics are welcomed here: Word choice and usage Grammar Etymology (history of words’ development) Dialect differences Pronunciation (...


10

As referenced in this Meta question, asking about a swear word is absolutely okay (as long as your question meets all the standard criteria, of course); the mere fact that it is a question about a swear word should not bring any opprobrium. The primary restriction is that you should post in a polite, civil manner, which means that you should not actually ...


9

tl,dr: Making ELL a migration target for non-moderators risks making matters worse, not better. There is great confusion about what makes a question suitable for migration. The main problem here is not the betaness one. That’s a red herring. Rather, the real reason the migration list is always a very a short list on all SE sites is because users, even ...


9

A few thoughts: I realize the suggested language comes straight from the Help Center, but the word "thoroughly" jumps out at me as sounding kind of, well, cranky. As far as I'm concerned, SE is part of the process of conducting thorough research. We don't want to make it sound like we don't like being asked questions at all. Along the same lines, I ...


9

thanks to all, I don't know English well (as elementary translator or trying to learn more by translating ! ). but. when i ask questions. the questions are not very technical (usually I don't need the meaning of technical words), but my questions are about phrases (usual idioms that native English speakers understand them, something like reading newspaper ...


9

I asked a question about how to request a historical lock for old but seemingly popular questions that don't meet current site standards for preliminary research (or some other criterion) here: How can users nominate old, popular questions for exemption from closure as being of 'historical value'? Since I stated explicitly there that my preference ...


8

I'm taking my moderator hat off here. I don't want this answer to be construed as EL&U policy (unless it's agreed that it should be). I think I disagree with your definition of cheating. To me cheating is breaking the rules to get ahead, and the way you break the rules is detrimental to the other people you are competing against. Education is not a ...


8

{Off-Topic} How do I make this (citation, document, quote, whatever) conform to MLA (or APA, or any other) style guidelines? [vote up if you agree it should be off-topic, vote down if you think it should be on-topic]


8

I don't like blanket prohibitions, except for ones canonized in the Help Center, so I'm not going to say tip of the tongue questions are never suitable, just that they are almost never suitable. A "tip of the tongue" question is just a Single Word Question to which the OP already knows, but temporarily cannot access, the answer. Often, the answer comes ...


8

I you're having trouble learning English, then please look up the English Learner's Stack Exchange Site, https://ell.stackexchange.com/. If you want to know if your question is on topic, you need to be more specific in your question here. Strictly speaking asking if a particular collection of words is a sentence is off topic. So if your question is "Is "A ...


7

Word and phrase requests are the most interesting part of this site in my opinion. It's the only time I see idioms and expressions and words I've never seen before and learn new ones. It's always enlightening to have that "I didn't know there was a word for that" moment. It also accustoms you to expressions and idioms from other languages from which the OP ...


7

The short answer is no. The longer answer is that a question like you propose would not have any conceivable right answer, and so it does not fit the SE Q&A format. It would most likely be closed as "primarily opinion-based" because of this. Alternatively, you might possibly find some people in chat who would be interested in discussing your topics.


7

Primarily because it is a question of human reaction, rather than one of syntax or language subtleties, it would probably not be considered on-topic.


7

suppose that for unexplained (but possibly mystical) reasons of my own i decide to capitalize every Seventeenth word in my answer to this question. on the one hand, such a decision seems difficult To characterize as "normative" since it isn't something most people do, and since it isn't calculated to Make what i write easier for readers to comprehend. but on ...


7

We don't do interpretations of writing on this site, but you can ask in our chat room. You may find some people who are interested in talking over author intent and artistic meaning.


7

This type of question is known across the Stack Exchange network as a “guessing game”. (In this case, guess what word I’m desperately trying to remember). Guessing games often turn out to be a poor fit for what Stack Exchange is trying to do: create a database of expert answers that help future visitors. One of the founders of Stack Exchange argued in a ...


6

Not liking the answer is an insufficient reason to justify a duplicate question. The question should be closed as a duplicate of the original question and the original should be improved if necessary. Editing a question will attract more attention to it. If the question has an accepted answer, posting a bounty is a more effective means of attracting new ...


6

Holds The data here shows that ELU had the third highest close rate in 2016 in the Stack Exchange network where 51.87% of all questions asked that year were closed. 2017's data is now in and we've taken the top spot for percent closed (out of number asked that year) at 54.82%. I think the site has pretty much always been this way. A nearly identical ...


5

Of all of the topics on this site, this is the one that I enjoy the most. When it's done well. There's nothing worse that having a question asked without a clear set of guidelines for what type of thing is being looked for, and what words have already been considered and rejected and why. When that happens, anybody can throw out hundreds of possibilities ...


5

I migrated it because it was from someone who is trying to learn English, and didn’t understand a would-be “rule” they were presented with.


4

There have been numerous attempts to reform spelling in the English language. Nearly all of these have been ignored (Noah Webster managed to make a few changes in one English-speaking region, but he had the advantage of writing dictionaries.) The advent of texting may actually result in a few beneficial changes, tho I can't see this improving the spelling of ...


4

For what it's worth, here's my opinion, partially copied from some comments I left earlier. Delete: To me, it seems that there wouldn't be any damage done if we deleted it. I don't think having it on this site is helpful. (Yes; it has many upvotes. Even so, upvotes do not measure quality, and it had a head start on most of the other questions.) The ...


4

Yes, it is fine that both sites can answer the same kind of question. There is inevitably going to be some overlap between topics in the wide variety of SE sites (do you want your question about the Cowboy Bebop movie on Movies.SE, Anime.SE, or SciFi.SE?) and trying to draw some kind of hard line will be an exercise in futility and frustration. On the ...


4

In your terminology, the community at ELU is almost entirely normative, meaning answering according to existing rules and variations (more on that in a second). The community has explicitly noted that they should mostly avoid things like neologisms or changes to grammar rules that are proposed to be better (by some criteria) and therefore is not (in general,...


4

The difference, at least as I saw it, is that in the case of the migrated question, the asker was an English-language learner who wanted to know whether they simply had to learn certain collocations by heart or whether there was some other way. The "learner" part seemed to call out for ELL to me. Also, their question seems to be confusing the "talk slow" ...


4

Generally, if they're too specific, as in, "I forgot this word, it starts with C, and ends with T, had only three letters in it, used for pets, this and that and that and this etc," they're not a good fit for ELU. But sometimes an interesting one comes along, and we all have fun playing the guessing game, until somebody decides to close it, and meanwhile it ...


3

As one of the closers, I can explain that I had no idea what you were asking for; I'm sorry about that. As a non-programmer, I still have absolutely no idea what you're asking for. However, in it's edited form, even though I certainly can't figure it out, I usually don't vote to close such a question because there are plenty of programmers on this site who ...


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