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How does the automatic subjective filter work?
What algorithm does StackOverflow use to determine if a question may be subjective?

The question you're asking appears subjective and is likely to be closed. http://shog9.com/subjective-warning.png

What did I do wrong? I just typed up a title for my question, went to enter the question itself, and bam BIG SCARY RED WARNING!

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  • 2
    Don't use the word "best" in a subject title - it connotes subjective question. Voting to close as Not IT Related. (as if I could...)
    – Pollyanna
    Apr 30, 2009 at 19:55
  • 1
    Voting to close as "Belongs on UserVoice" ... wait, I can't!
    – Eddie
    Apr 30, 2009 at 19:56
  • Why are you asking meta questions? Don't you know better from SO?
    – juan
    Apr 30, 2009 at 19:58
  • @Juan: yes, i do. But i also enjoy poking around and seeing what's new / different... and the beta period seems like a perfect opportunity for that. I fully expect every question I ask here to quietly disappear long before the site goes live.
    – Shog9
    Apr 30, 2009 at 20:00
  • @Juan: This is a SFFAQ post...I don't think Shog9 is being deadly serious.
    – TheTXI
    Apr 30, 2009 at 20:04
  • @TheTXI: I'm pretty sure Shog9is quite the deadly guy.
    – Pollyanna
    Apr 30, 2009 at 20:06
  • serverfault.com/faq has a link to a search of questions tagged sffaq-official, so obviously they see the need for some features of the site to be documented by us.
    – Sam Hasler
    Apr 30, 2009 at 20:51
  • What about "preferred" or "optimal" or "least bad"? :P
    – user27414
    Apr 30, 2009 at 21:05
  • "Barely adequate" appears to work...
    – Shog9
    Apr 30, 2009 at 21:09
  • @Shog9 Please keep in mind the purpose of the beta is to fill content on the site before it goes life, Jeff rarely does a DB Cleanup before launching. This was the case with SO. May 14, 2009 at 21:31
  • BAM! Time to stop bringing reddit memes here.
    – Juliano
    May 14, 2009 at 22:26

3 Answers 3


Don't use the following words in a subject title - it connotes subjective question.

  • Best
  • Worst
  • Hardest
  • You
  • Your
  • Favorite
  • Favourite

Jeff posted the regex in uservoice (As of May 2, 2009):

Regex.IsMatch(s, @"\bbest\b|\bworst\b|\bhardest\b|\byour?\b|\bfavou?rite\b", RegexOptions.IgnoreCase);

It is important to note that avoiding the above words does not make your question any less subjective - "Best management tool" is inherently subjective - the warning is not there to tell you to avoid certain words, but to avoid the question altogether, or to re-word it so it can be evaluated objectively and measurably so that the answer is the same for everyone in your situation.



Yeah, well, mine got closed even if it didn't had "best" in the subject. I think all this is way to "subjective" for a beta so I will probably stay away ... at least until it will be out of beta :)

  • 2
    Others' interpretation of subjectivity will not change when the beta period ends.
    – Scottie T
    May 4, 2009 at 17:30

This feature only exist due to the enormous karma boost you get when you use these words. Making people talk about there belief system or experience is the most joyful thing in the world for a geek, why take it way from us SO? This is why computers are so fun.

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