Our help/on-topic page has served us well for the past couple of years (a huge "Thank you!" to Craig and Mike for doing all the heavy lifting on it). However, some of the examples that were used don't quite fit and there have been some other discussions on meta that seem to have clarified some points.

So, this is as good of a time as any to do this since I have a bit of spare time.

The question is what do you think about a revamp of the page and how do we want to go about this change?

I will provide a few canned answers, but feel free to add your own or provide comments where appropriate.

After giving people a chance to see, think and respond to this (about a week or so), we will follow the course that is most preferred by the community.

Edit: So, after eight days I just selected the answer with the most votes, which was two. We had a total of three votes with over 80 views on the post, so I take this to mean that most of the community really doesn't care too much about the topic.

In line with the selected answer, I will go ahead and update the page now but if you did have any ideas or comments, please feel free to post another answer or provide comments. I will continue to watch this post for them.

4 Answers 4


Yes it needs to be totally redone; let's let the moderators redo it

It definitely needs to change, but a collective work by the community may be too much effort/trouble.

I have gone ahead and threw together a more streamlined version loosely based on:

  • the current content
  • format used on some other SE site
  • all the Meta posts I recall in the past couple of years

You can view it here, so choosing this option would likely result in something close to this.

  • I actually think your proposed version is a very good start. I would propose adding something about the on-topic questions not being too broad to answer. I seem to recall a question about someone wanting to use QoS, not knowing much about it, and asking how to configure it. Such a question just can't be properly answered in the SE format.
    – Ron Maupin Mod
    Nov 13, 2015 at 1:40
  • @RonMaupin, that is kind of covered in the standard "help/dont-ask" page so I don't know if we should include it on this page as well (it isn't really about on/off topic but more how to ask), but will definitely consider the idea.
    – YLearn
    Nov 13, 2015 at 1:43
  • @RonMaupin, just to keep you informed, while we already had the link to the "dont-ask" page, I did add a bit more to expand that it referenced too broad or opinion based questions. Does that fit with what you were hoping to add?
    – YLearn
    Nov 21, 2015 at 11:23
  • That's fine, thanks. I deal with a lot of people who would look at that page and tell me something is on-topic and it doesn't say anything about focus. The new page doesn't require a lot of scrolling to see everything, and I really like that.
    – Ron Maupin Mod
    Nov 21, 2015 at 17:33

Yes it needs to be totally redone; the entire community should have a chance to help draft it

It really needs to be changed, but the community should be the ones to decide on the content.

If this is your preference, please make sure to provide in the comments section how you feel it would be best to go about this process efficiently as a group.


It needs some minor changes, maybe some updates to the examples, but I like it the way it is

I like it the way it is now. Sure, we have a couple years of new questions that should allow us to provide better examples, and mayber there is something we need to add or adjust based on other meta discussions, but let's not make any major changes.

If you choose this option, please be willing to contribute time to looking for and suggesting new examples of what is on/off topic for this site, ways that the existing page can be improved, etc.


No, it's perfect as it stands, don't change a thing.

There's not a thing wrong with it now so let's waste no more effort on this topic. Leave it exactly as it stands.

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