Today I answered a question which you can consider to be a little off topic but there was some major misunderstanding that how that person was approaching an issue so I gave him a little advice to put him in the right direction.
Soon after my answer I got down voted and was advised by a Stack Overflow member that I shouldn't answer off topic questions:
Please don't answer off-topic questions; by actively answering them, you give the question that questions like this are appropriate for SO, which only encourages more off-topic questions.
My argument is IF someone has a problem and they dont even realise that what is the problem and where is it? and they ask a question on SO not about the actual problem but about the symptoms of that problem, Would it be not better to explain them how they end up having these problems and they can be avoided.
Since the person doesn't even realise where the actual problem is their questions will appear to be off topic. Would it be not better if we can help them to address the actual issues rather than down voting these questions or putting them on hold?
I might be wrong in saying all this but its just a thought, Help someone in need when it doesn't cost you a penny, why not then pal?