Japanese is such a highly context-dependent language that questions about the meanings of single sentences out of context are very difficult to answer, not just because the answerer has to do a lot of guesswork, but also because guesswork-based answers aren't going to be that useful to the asker.

I'm new to this site, so I'm not sure how things work around these parts, but on other sites there are "stickies" or "wikis" or rules which explain how questions should be asked.

It seems like it would make this board a lot more useful (for askers) if there were a list of suggestions, including to put as much context as possible, etc.

| |
  • We have a meta site for this, but I'll start getting this migrated over to that site. – ajsmart Mar 24 at 14:17
  • Thanks. I couldn’t find “meta-Japanese.” Probably wasn’t looking hard enough. – Al Gorithm Mar 24 at 14:32
  • 2
    What's the downvote for? Seems like a reasonable question to me, from someone who wants to help. Once again we're excelling in welcoming new users. – user3856370 Mar 24 at 16:15
  • Does the help center help? – Sweeper Mar 25 at 21:19
  • 1
    @Sweeper Not really. The closest would be "how do I ask a good question" and it has nothing about context. I noticed that a box with information is displayed above the field where you enter your question: maybe something about context could be put in there? – Al Gorithm Mar 25 at 22:11
  • Oh, so you are suggesting that we add such a section about context into the help centre? Is that what you mean? – Sweeper Mar 26 at 11:15
  • Not the help center, but like for example as I'm typing this, a little yellow box appears below this explaining what comments are. It would be something like, warning people that "what does this sentence mean"-type questions are hard to answer. – Al Gorithm Mar 26 at 15:27
  • This page at least has the sentence "When asking your question, please provide as much context as possible." I think the main problem is that people don't normally read things like this, and most people won't learn until they have been explicitly told. We could improve that text. We could make a pop-up box with a big red border and capital letters, but I bet it wouldn't make a huge amount of difference. – user3856370 Mar 26 at 17:38

You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .