A question regarding summarization was asked today, and after a quick google search, I found that the question was taken from several brain dump sites, including testking and How2Pass.

I personally would take the position that all questions having anything to do with brain-dumps, directly or indirectly, should be banned, as it will bring the search results for the site into the same community as the dump sites - however, the argument could be made that as long as the person asking shows a reasonable amount of effort in understanding the logic behind the question and the concepts it covers, it might be okay.

I want to be clear - if someone posts questions asking for brain dumps, obviously those questions should be closed. I'm speaking more specifically about subtle things like the question I linked to - I didn't know it was a brain dump question until I acted on a hunch and googled it.

What is the NE-SE community stance on questions like that? Permissible, or definitely not?


2 Answers 2


To me anything brain dump related would fall under certification/education related questions which are off topic or considered out of the scope for this site.

  • 4
    Not sure I agree - if a concept or technology is considered on topic, then a question regarding an exam question about it shouldn't be, just on the sole reason that it's education related. If the focus of the question is the certification itself, or is open-ended, then it's off-topic. However, if the point of the question is to get down to how that technology works, I see no difference with other on-topic questions. Now....how to handle the scenario if this question obviously comes from a brain dump?
    – Mierdin
    Commented Jul 23, 2013 at 22:04

I don't think that just being from brain-dump is enough reason for question to be considered off topic. If the question is not a copy/paste from brain dump (like subnetting example) and the asker provided his thoughts about the problem and steps how he tried to solve it, i think it should be allowed.

If the question is obviously from a brain dump and asker just wants the answer so he showed no effort in trying to solve it himself, i would consider it off topic.

If we consider all questions based on brain dumps off topic we can have a situation where we allow questions that are lower quality (but are real world examples) and close those that can be much more useful just because they are based on a question from a brain dump. Also for some more complex questions we could miss very useful answers that would benefit us all. So, it all depends. I guess there will be 2/3 of questions that should be considered off topic but for those 1/3 left we shouldn't be so rigid and ban them all.

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