Meta-PokéBase Q&A
1 vote

So this question was closed for low quality. After I read this question and this question, I still think it should be allowed.

It's not about in-game teams.
It's not very easy to look up on Pokemon DB.
It's not about emulators or unofficial games.
It doesn't stop the "community of regulars" from enjoying this site. (at least it didn't for me, and I consider myself a regular)
It's about information that is already confirmed and requires no guessing (ie. not "Game Freak logic").
It's not "hyper-specific". I can probably write the answer in 30 minutes by going to a list of Japanese names and doing ctrl f "don".
It's not subjective or vague.

ago by
I just typed "don" in the search bar, and everything came up.

1 Answer

2 votes

That thread hits the second and third dot points on this thread you linked, which still stand. Thirty minutes is too long to spend on a question that is quite literally a chore to answer, and has no meat on the bone in terms of content. In days gone by I would let this sort of thing go, but my patience for it has worn away.

As much as you might not find it much to sit through, obviously at least three other people viewed it differently. When I see negative votes, it is a signal to me that people aren't finding the content worthwhile. Myself and others have agreed that questions as niche as that one don't make for good reading, so we act upon them.

It sounds selfish when it's our service to provide answers to people's questions: but ultimately, nobody will answer questions if they don't like reading or writing about them. Moderating around that is very discretionary, and I get that it's frustrating. But hopefully I can make the standards clearer.

Here are some of the things I and others consider when deciding whether to keep a thread. Particularly bad instances of each can have threads removed, or more usually, when they are combined.

  • If the question involves making a list of something or looking up very simple data, then our Q&A achieves nothing more than a database query. It creates flat and apathetic content.
  • If the question is not conducive to original, written content (i.e. others sharing their ideas or insights), then it won't give rise to explanation or reasoning and could be seen as low quality.
  • Sometimes a question should invite some reasoning or explanation, but doesn't because it's unreasonable or overly speculative. So basically, 'Game Freak logic' goes here. The worst one to moderate.
  • If the question's appeal is seen as extremely niche -- usually limited only to its author themselves -- then it's not going to help this be a place people like reading and writing for.
  • If the question is laborious and trying to answer, then we'll be less sympathtic toward it. Please remember this is not the same as a question being hard to answer, or requiring effort.
  • Other factors such as poor expression, vagueness, immaturity, impoliteness, etc. all contribute negatively. Aim to make your posts represent the opposite of those things.

If I'm to put a different spin on things, I'm trying to filter out the stuff that makes you think, 'Really?' or 'Who cares?' or 'How are we supposed to know?'. Not everyone sees that the same way, but with time, overall trends in people's tastes become apparent. Here are some ways you can make your questions more palatable to them:

  • Explain what you want the answer for. This lets others see your reasoning for asking, and helps make your post relatable. It humanises your issue as a whole.
  • Provide some context. Have you tried to research the issue before? What do you know about it already? Universally, you will receive a better reaction if it looks like you're putting in effort.
  • If you're stepping into 'Game Freak logic' territory, get smart with your wording. 'Do we know about...?' and 'Why might...?' and 'Is there a reason...?' are all respectful of the possiblity we know nothing.
  • Actually state in your description what you want to be explained, or what would solve your problem. You can almost always be more particular than what you put in your title.

Overall, I'm becoming harsher with this rule as time goes by. I'm glad to see people like yourself making threads about it, because it shows they notice and care. I will keep talking about this stuff -- as well as other things, as I'm sure there are those among you who are sick to death of this conversation. ;)

Let me know if any of this is unclear, or if you don't agree with it.

ago by
I absolutely agree, there becomes a point when a question is less about gaining useful information and more about a silly contest on how specific and niche it can be.
Why do you get to judge how useless a question is?
If mods aren't to judge that, then who is?
I get this approach is frustrating, and it's why I held off on it for so long: but I just think it's necessary if this place is to attract and retain a high-quality and knowledgeable userbase. If you don't think it's worthwhile though, please do talk to me about it.
Why is this necessary for retaining knowledgeable users?
Also, why do in-game team questions not count as "extremely niche"? I'm pretty sure most teams are only ever used once by one person.
The "don" question is something that can be looked up pretty easily, just find a list of the names then Ctrl+F "don".

@sumwun Mods get to judge because that's their job. It's difficult to get the balance right but I think they all do a great job. It's impossible to write rules that are perfectly black-and-white (and even if it was, people would still disagree with aspects of it). Mods are appointed because they understand the nuance of what makes a good question and what doesn't.