What is with the ban against Stack Overflow questions concerning preferences? I understand the focus on facts, but information regarding preferences can be very valuable.

Some examples:

These were all closed as "not constructive," except for the last which was closed as "primarily opinion-based." So why the ban?

If Stack Overflow isn't the right place, is there a more appropriate Stack Exchange community for questions about preferences?


2 Answers 2


The focus on questions that have a single answer has been a long-standing aspect of SE. It is that way because this is a questions-and-answers site, not a web forum.

This doesn't mean that opinion-questions are bad, and as you've pointed out they can be good. Some sites will even allow certain subjective questions on them, provided they are the good, constructive type of subjective that leads to a better understanding of the subject, is relevant to the SE, and most importantly is a question that has an answer, and a specific acceptable answer as well.

List questions of preference, while useful for those comparing or interested in comparing certain things, are not within the purview of SE sites, and to avoid lengthy topics on the subject, it is kept that way across all SE sites.

If you want to talk about that sort of thing though, there are chat rooms for extended discussion. Anything else you will have to get outside of SE.


The primarily opinion based closed reason states, the important point being in bold:

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise.

These would result in members potentially posting spam links, could lead to arguments between which is the 'best' etc.

Basically, these would not lead to a definite answer, but discussions, and SE is not a discussion forum.

Nowhere in the SE network would these type of questions be appropriate.

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