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Is it OK to ask a question on a Stack Exchange site that could have several different answers (like a brainstorm) or must all questions have a single, correct answer?

The help section said not to ask for people's opinion, which I don't plan to. But I'm wondering if a more open-ended question (that has multiple practical answers for a real problem) is allowed.

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    You're in grave danger of closure as too-broad if you do that. Depends on the question though, you could elicit a more concrete response on the meta of the specific site you want to ask the question on if you provided the text of that question there and asked if it would be appropriate. – Robert Longson May 18 '18 at 2:38
  • On which site are you wanting to ask? The answer to this question will depend on the site on which you're asking. Most sites are structured such that there is at least some criteria for deciding if an answer actually fulfills the question, and/or if one answer is better than another. One exception that comes to mind is Worldbuilding, where the answers often end up looking like people brainstorming, but it's still something that's very focused on what the question is asking, rather than just a discussion. – Makyen May 18 '18 at 8:07
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I think any question that is open-ended in that it seeks multiple answers at its asking will be too broad for focused Q&A.

For focused Q&A only a single answer should be the target of the question.

Multiple answers may and often are given, but disparate multiple answers should not be sought.

To me the term "brainstorming" in a question is a red flag that the question is likely to be too broad.

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    Seeking a single definitive answer forces the question asker to really think about what their problem is. Smart! – AidanJ May 18 '18 at 2:54
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Is it OK to ask a question on a Stack Exchange site that could have several different answers (like a brainstorm) or must all questions have a single, correct answer?

I think as a general rule, you should not ask questions that the majority of those answering could not place on a spectrum of correctness: from grossly off the mark, to hypothetically ideal in every way. That is to say if it comes down to style, like what is your favorite color -- you're probably better off not asking it as it will obviously be closed.

Most of the rest is pretension to be honest. There is seldom a best way to do something and most answers -- even the accepted ones -- aren't perfect enough to be outside of the realm of critique by those sufficiently skilled. And, even when the answers is precise and accurate you can have someone like Peter Cordes come in and demolish it by providing a newer answer with more detail, background, and clarity. (that's a compliment, his answers are better than anything any other mortal can do).

"Open ended" means different things to different people. I've been on the site for over 9 years, and my questions still get closed. Some times it's just an out of control close-brigade and not you anyway.

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