25

1 Introduction Titles give a first impression of your post. Good titles bring positive attention to your question, and you will get it answered sooner; more upvotes will follow etc. Bad titles don't allow your question to get the attention it deserves. (Fewer upvotes, less likelihood of getting an answer etc.) Very bad titles might get you lots of attention, ...


22

I'm a non-native speaker and also a new face around here. I suspect that I might also be part of the cause of this recently increasing trend of such a sentence and those similar lines. Although I'm quite certain that this elephant in the room had existed before I signed up with our ELL community. With good intentions, I usually answer questions when I ...


17

As a native English speaker -- and thus having no reason to be biased against such a request -- I agree that 90% of the time it's pointless. Sure, most of the time, the thoughts of someone who has been speaking and writing a language every day for the past 40 years are likely more helpful than someone who started attending a language class yesterday. But ...


15

Quick Reference Card for Writing Good Titles (summarized from the more detailed answer) Put words from other sources in "quotation marks" between thumb, forefinger and middle finger - why no articles? "between thumb, forefinger and middle finger" - Why no articles? Write titles that are complete thoughts pushed on something What ...


14

The problem is a real one; but I don't much care for the proposed solution. It requires additional effort on the part of users who in many cases struggle to express themselves once. It separates the user's problem from her effort to solve the problem—matters which may have a common origin. It exposes the user to unnecessary risk. A question which ...


13

I'm not sure I see this "exclusion" that you speak of. I never thought: "I would like to hear a native speaker's opinion, please" implied: (A) "I'm not interested in hearing a non-native speaker's opinion" or: (B) "I only want to hear a native speaker's opinion." I've always interpreted the remark to mean: (C) "Everyone is welcome to ...


13

That's being awfully pedantic in the face of someone seeking help regarding the proper use of English. If someone says, "Can I write {x}?", you can safely assume they mean "Is it proper to…" There's an old joke that starts, "Can you tell me how to get to the airport?" — where the respondent says "Yes!" and walks away. Don't be that person. ...


12

Interestingly, I do not consider myself prone to genocide (I'm not a fan, not even in a mild way) and yet, I can think of people that I would love to see removed from the society I live in. I think there are two things that may rub people the wrong way in that question. 1) The (over) use of the word hate. In English, hatred is almost always used as a ...


12

I don't think it's unreasonable to want a native speaker opinion. Native speakers of any language are much better at identifying whether a sentence sounds natural or unnatural, too formal, etc., even though they are not better at identifying why. I post French questions at french.stackexchange.com because I want to sound more like a native French speaker, ...


11

I agree with WendiKidd's OP. There's nothing to be gained from restricting who should answer. However some questions may be specifically about a particular branch of English, i.e. British, American, Indian, etc. and the nature of the question will make it apparent that answers from 'natives' of that area will be preferred. Even so, the question is best ...


10

I am not at all unsympathetic to the opinion you express; as our SE Commissar Robert Cartaino put it before the site even entered public Beta, ‘What better way is there to learn English than to have someone correct your errors, especially in the supportive context of an "English Language Learners" site?’ There are, however, practical, methodological and in ...


10

I have addressed this in my Details, please post. I can understand how a learner might feel frustrated by a question like that, but that frustration goes both ways. When we see a question for something that looks like a simple idiom: What is the meaning of the expression across the pond? Is it really a situation when someone in the UK mentions about a place ...


10

Let's take a look at the following question: What is the meaning of "will fulfill a prophecy by bringing balance to the Force"? Here's the content of your question, formatted slightly to allow more natural block quoting: Title: What is the meaning of “will fulfill a prophecy by bringing balance to the Force”? Source Qui-Gon senses ...


10

A question of great complexity. My take, from experience of teaching, is simply this: Firstly, phrase your comment in a manner that doesn't cause a loss of face. In cultures where face is important, this shows courtesy and encourages a positive response. A comment that denegrates the original questioner can cause them to simply walk away, offended. ...


10

Yes and no. You cannot paste a paragraph you have written, and ask the community to identify the mistakes. That is called "proofreading", and it is expressly off-topic. So, you could not ask a question like this: Checking for errors in paragraph Are there any grammatical mistakes in the following? The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog, and ...


9

We are not a translation service... There are thousands of translation dictionaries out there that will do word-for-word translations for you. We are not going to become another one. Any question like this will likely be closed with the basic questions close reason: Basic questions on spelling, meaning or pronunciation are off-topic as they should be ...


8

No . . . Yes . . . Well, it just can't be answered in one word. Dang it! Proofreading questions are off-topic on ELL; unless you "provide a source of concern". For example, this: Is my sentence grammatical? I just wanted to know if my sentence is grammatical. Here it is: When drinking sweetened drink (such as cola) is it coming to the ...


8

If you are asking the person that wrote the text for clarification about what they said, it probably should be a comment. If you are asking about the English of the text, or about a “rule” that someone put forth, you should post another question, include a link to the question that had the text you'd like to ask about, and explain what you found when you ...


7

My answer could be repetitious but I also want to show my opposition toward addressing native speakers in a question, It is read like an offense to a non-native speaker who can answer the question. Even native-speakers don't need to be addressed to answer specific questions, it's an offense to them too. (it is read like a demand) ELL as it implies is a ...


7

Are they suitable for the site? Yeah. But here's the thing. Firstly, I've always been a little bit hesitant to suggest that questions are a poor fit based solely on the answers that they would receive. Why? Because the asker often doesn't know what kind of response they'll get, and it's likely to turn people off using the site. Are these those kinds of ...


7

As J.R. says, such questions would be perfectly acceptable here, provided they're not the sort of thing that can be answered by simply consulting a dictionary. However, I believe they would be just as acceptable on ELU; and since you are a native speaker, I suspect that you would get more appropriate answers there. Here answers often must explicitly ...


7

I know that learning a new language can be very frustrating. ELL is meant to be a resource for you as you continue to learn English and encounter things that you can't find the answer to. That is the beauty of the entire StackExchange network. When people ask good questions that don't have a clear or easy to find answer online in other places, we're more ...


7

The help center topic "What topics can I ask about here?" explains that Proofreading (for example, "Are there any mistakes?" or "Is this correct?"), unless a source of concern is clearly specified So, you can ask about specific concerns that you have with a a paragraph that you've written, but you should ask about one thing per question. It's OK to have ...


7

Screenshots are unacceptable. It causes problems for people who cannot see images (e.g. because they are blind or have bandwidth constraints). We could fix this by setting appropriate alt text on the images, but then we might as well just get rid of the images altogether. It also causes problems for search. Depending on the quality of the image, it might be ...


6

I would say it was acceptable. The main criterion for a good question is one that helps people learn the English language. It doesn't matter what the questioner's native language is. Idioms and expressions are just as much a part of any language as the vocabulary and the grammar.


6

Avoid putting something critical to your question in the title of the question unless you add it to the body of the question as well. In other words, make sure that someone can read your whole question (without going back to the title) and still fully understand what you are asking. Don't use the snippet of text you are asking us to analyze as the title of ...


6

In the old days we had Not A Real Question, which would certainly apply. Today, Wendi's choice of the OT-Add More Details works, but so does unclear what you're asking, since it goes on to say: Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. "Additional details" are precisely what you, I and ...


6

Done You can find it here: https://english.stackexchange.com/questions/538314/is-it-ok-to-use-otherwise-after-where Thanks for the request! Also as a general reminder this is the right way to do it if you feel another site might be better suited to your question, as opposed to cross-posting on multiple sites.


6

You actually asked 10 questions; 2 of them were deleted (you can find them here - that link only works for you and for ♦ moderators). At some point in the past, you have received a warning when asking a question indicating that you were close to the limit, and apparently it kicked in now. There is nothing we can do about it, it's a feature of the system. ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible