I couldn't find anything in the help center here about this and I was wondering if it was against the rules or not for people to post questions in a foreign language? What about if they posted in English and another language (bilingual questions)?

Update: I did find this https://stackoverflow.blog/2009/07/23/non-english-question-policy/ and wasn't aware that it applied everywhere. So that answers the first part of my question.

But I would still like to know if it would be acceptable for users who do not speak English very well to post their question in their best possible English and then a translation of it in their native language (in case someone knows it and wants to help them edit/answer their question)? It's all right if it's not acceptable - I am not trying to cause trouble or create an issue - I just want to know the policy here about that. Thank you :)

1 Answer 1


The official language of StackExchange sites are English. Therefore, only questions that are written in English are valid, same applies to the answers and comments. You already mentioned this.

However, some sites offer branches in other languages, such as StackOverflow in Russian. Although these sites do not share content with the main site, they still provide a way for users to ask questions in common languages, such as Russian, Japanese, etc. If you can find your native language on StackOverflow, all the better.

But having the question both in your native language and in English is not a good idea. It will make the post messy, especially when the question is very long. Some languages are not even be properly formatted when mixed, such as a combination of LTR and RTL posts. A solution could be to include a link to a pasteBin post, which contains the question in your native language. This way you can keep the post tidy, and also give other users that share your language to have a better chance of understanding your question.

  • Thank you for your reply. I think the idea of a link to a pasteBin post is a good idea for those who need to make use of it. But I do have a follow up question: shouldn't the help documentation specific to this website mention that only English questions/answers are valid in case people wonder? I couldn't find anything that explicitly stated posts should be written only in the English language. Furthermore, the blog article on the language policy was published about 10 years ago and isn't linked to in the help center. Perhaps it should be made more visible to users to increase awareness of it?
    – jsmod
    Commented Mar 20, 2019 at 6:45

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