I marked this question as off-topic and was overridden by Al as indicated in the comments.

I'm not questioning his decision as a mod at all (Al and I are totally cool! I swear! lol :-D), but I think the FAQ could use a bit of clarification when it comes to off-topic posts. As it stands it's actually pretty vague as far as providing examples:

  • every answer is equally valid: “What’s your favorite ______?”
  • your answer is provided along with the question, and you expect more answers: “I use ______ for ______, what do you use?”
  • there is no actual problem to be solved: “I’m curious if other people feel like I do.”
  • we are being asked an open-ended, hypothetical question: “What if ______ happened?”
  • it is a rant disguised as a question: “______ sucks, am I right?”

Actually, now that I'm rereading the FAQ it seems like this is the generic FAQ that every SE site gets during beta. Perhaps it's time to start getting more specific in the areas that call for it?

2 Answers 2


For the answer to this question:

Should the FAQ section on off-topic questions be clarified?

I vote yes. There has been quite a few important Meta decisions that are not yet incorporated into the FAQ.


This is a bit borderline, but it is extremely specific --

  • I need a music app that has these specific features (list)
  • I searched for such an app and could not find one
  • can be free or paid if necessary

The specific-ness makes it allowable IMO. I don't think any of the /faq section you quoted is applicable in this case. The first line tells:

You should only ask practical, answerable questions based on actual problems that you face.

This is practical, answerable, and is based on the user's specific needs without being absurdly specific.

  • This does not answers the question
    – Lie Ryan
    Commented Jun 17, 2011 at 14:07

You must log in to answer this question.

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