According to the help center, we have some specific topics that are considered off topic:

  • Help identifying a particular piece of wood (for example, by looking at a picture)
  • Product or vendor recommendations
  • Help finding woodworking plans
  • Critiques of a specific woodworking project or design (not to be confused with general design considerations)

However, the custom close reasons available are few and fairly generic:

off topic close reasons

I get that the first item covers everything listed in the help center, but that's not especially helpful for either the people voting to close or for people whose questions are closed.

I propose that we either modify the first off topic close reason to briefly list the close reasons from the help center, or (better) create a separate custom reason that lists them. Telling someone that his/her question related to a table saw isn't about woodworking just doesn't make a lot of sense. I'd like to have a reason like:

  • As explained in the help center, questions about wood identification, product/vendor/plan recommendations, or feedback on a specific project are considered off topic.

What's more, it'd be helpful to expand the help center off topic list to explain why these particular items are off topic, even if it's a catch-all statement about these kinds of questions leading to debate or extended discussion rather than definitive answers.

  • FYI I've added a statement to the help center page about why certain classes of questions are off-topic. We may need to fine-tune the close reason, but I agree it would be nice to add something like the one you suggested. Perhaps it would be adequate to jut replace "feedback" with "critiques" since general feedback is acceptable.
    – rob Mod
    Jun 8, 2015 at 4:19
  • Also it isn't clear what an appropriate answer would be for your meta question, but perhaps people could suggest other possible close reasons that would address the issue you've pointed out. Any answers should only address issues we've already encountered, not possible issues we might see further down the road, as was briefly discussed in an older meta question: meta.woodworking.stackexchange.com/questions/39/…
    – rob Mod
    Jun 8, 2015 at 4:31
  • 1
    @rob I think an appropriate answer would be either an opposing viewpoint ("I don't think we should do this because...") or a statement from someone in a position to implement the request about whether this is possible or what is being done to address the issue. At least, that's how they seem to roll on meta.stackexchange.com and meta.stackoverflow.com.
    – Caleb
    Jun 8, 2015 at 6:36


You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .