Not to pick on anyone, but there've been a few recent questions that come very close to bordering on failing our [faq]


Recommendation for accommodation in Montreal

Can anyone recommend a good restaurant in central southside Dublin?

Can anyone recommend a good hiking trail in Scotland?

Can anyone recommend the most interesting 2 or 3 day cycle in Vietnam?

I'd like to discuss these as examples. Some are 'fineish', but we're only going to get more, and the problem I have is that there's no definitive answer that can satisfactorily answer a question. Most interesting 2-3 day cycle - to whom? Good hiking trail in Scotland? Needs more details? Accommodation in Montreal - there are hundreds of hotels/hostels/campsites/couchsurfing etc.

I'd prefer they were rephrased as "I want accommodation in x that meets these 5 criteria". Essentially, answers should not be subjective and start discussions.

I'd like to flesh out the [FAQ] to be more precise on this, and start being stricter about questions coming in like this, but would like feedback on how it should read. Thoughts? Suggestions? This is one time a discussion is good :)


Well we already have the "specific criteria" criteria for suggestion / recommendation questions. Why not just enforce that everywhere?

  • It might help if we can get some help from the system though.

    When you start asking a question with "best" the system will insert a loud little warning about the question box that such questions are likely to be closed.

    Maybe we can work with the SE people to try to detect suggestion / recommendation questions in the same way and put in a loud little warning that such questions must have specific criteria or will be closed.

  • Also we could change the tag name from to or something like that as a way to nag people that such questions must always be specific.

(Oh by the way I don't consider these shopping questions, those are a different problem which require different approaches.)


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