Similar, but not quite the same as this recent thread: Hidden on topic page. And of interest to me first hand, since my first two interactions with WPSE in years was actually two Qs asking for plugin recommendations.

Now, I've likely missed a large stash of discussions in meta. Still, in light of the FAQ and a few other threads I've been scanning, I'm somewhat bemused that these two answers got down-voted:



Is this "WP for Pros by Pros"? "WP for Users by Users"? "WP for Users by Pros"?

If it's for users (whether by pros or users), then plugin recommendations and all sorts of support requests that currently seem labeled as off topic actually ought to be very valid WPSE questions. Including, yes, the stuff that reeks of sewers asked by hapless peons, plebes and newbies.

If it's for pros by pros, then Chip's -1 voting Kaiser's new name suggestion is unwarranted.

Anyway, I'm at a loss. Can anyone enlighten me somewhat? The current FAQ page on what exactly is on topic reads like Chinese and seems to exclude almost everything.

I don't mean to sound thick, but I'm still puzzled. If I take the newest questions at the time of editing this question:

I'll stop here, but I could continue ad nausea. Not a single question seems to fit our on-topic criteria.

As such, might it be time to revisit the latter? I mean, if nothing fits the WPSE, and the questions that do fit are better asked in the wp-hackers list, WPSE's usefulness is extremely dubious.

Edit 2: As to answers, I dutifully note this comment:

The difference is that the explanations and solutions are on our site. Answers can include links, but they should not rely on them.

Sure… but in the case of WP, if the above sample is anything to go by, nearly all questions can readily be answered with a simple pointer to the relevant doc/howto/plugin/file. There isn't much to expand on them short of paraphrasing at length.

This issue is not specific to the WPSE, mind you. SO has the same mindset, and I admittedly disagree with the way it's handled over there. Many times, a link is the only answer OPs are hoping for.


1 Answer 1


On topic are questions seeking for solutions for or explanations about WordPress.

Off topic are questions seeking for links to solutions, and problems we cannot reproduce. Plugin or theme recommendation questions are shopping questions, they don’t fit on any Stack Exchange site, albeit some sites allow them (Web Applications for example).

Link only answers are not welcome, because the link might point to some other page or to an error page after a while. Just two days ago I had to delete such an answer from one of our high rep users, because the link pointed to a spam site now.

I agree, our on topic page needs a better text. We have just added things over the years, and now it looks a little bit discouraging.

The expert level doesn’t really matter. We get many beginner questions (What is X?), and they are welcome.

  • I don't mean to sound thick, but I'm still puzzled… How are "What is X?" or explanations about WP not questions seeking links to the WP Codex or the relevant file in the WP code base? Commented Oct 29, 2013 at 8:04
  • 2
    @Denis The difference is that the explanations and solutions are on our site. Answers can include links, but they should not rely on them.
    – fuxia Mod
    Commented Oct 29, 2013 at 8:09
  • I've edited my question. Commented Oct 29, 2013 at 8:37
  • @Denis See my update.
    – fuxia Mod
    Commented Oct 29, 2013 at 8:41

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