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I'm pursuing the elusive Copy Editor badge, and have been trying to think of patterns in questions that tend to need edits. The biggest one I've seen concerns the number of words in the title. I'd wager 80+% of titles that have 3 words or less probably don't represent the actual question and could be improved substantially. However, I haven't found a way to search specifically for these questions yet, and even the SNSO (Super Ninja Search Options) seem to have failed me.

Could someone help me find a way to locate all questions with titles that 3 or less words in them? I know this could be resolved easily with a query, but my SQL and knowledge of the SE query engine isn't particularly sharp. Perhaps this could be added as a filter to the review panel?

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Why does 3 words or less mean it must need an edit? I would think that you'd rather search for titles with over 15 words to make them more readable and relevant. There are also plenty of active posts that need clarification and editing, wouldn't your time be better spent editing those? –  Wesley Murch May 28 '11 at 20:43
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On second thought, I largely agree: 3 word titles are rarely helpful and almost always vague. We want more accurate matching/duplicate questions to pop up in the pane within the "Ask Question" page, right? –  Wesley Murch May 28 '11 at 20:49
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this is a great idea and I need to feed it to our quality algorithm! –  Jeff Atwood May 29 '11 at 6:42

1 Answer 1

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Gird your loins.

http://data.stackexchange.com/stackoverflow/q/101907/posts-with-titles-of-3-words-or-less

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Wow. I had very low expectations for the quality when just thinking about it being only 3 words or less. But these... wow. –  Grace Note Jun 3 '11 at 11:41

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