Are overview questions off topic as not a good fit for StackOverflow / StackExchange?

Dialog here

  • related: meta.christianity.stackexchange.com/questions/870/…
    – brilliant
    Commented May 20, 2014 at 15:16
  • An overview of what? Of a topic like baptism? Probably would be fine. But that question is essentially asking for an overview of Christianity for the first quarter of its existence - it's far too big!
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Commented May 21, 2014 at 3:21
  • 1
    @curiousdannii - So, if I reduced it to, say, only 2 centuries, would it be okay then?
    – brilliant
    Commented May 21, 2014 at 5:20
  • I don't think so. Look at the previous meta discussion. Personally I think overviews are fine if you can present the 2-5 views on a topic each with a paragraph or so of explanation. There's simply too much to say with your question, even limited to 2 centuries. If you were to ask for an overview of the early church's debates on the divinity of Jesus, or the inclusion of Revelation in the canon, or the primacy of Rome, or individual topics, then those would be good focused questions. But to answer your question you'd need to give overviews for each of those and dozens more topics.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Commented May 22, 2014 at 5:33
  • I'm not sure why this question is needed... brilliant's last meta question has a great answer.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Commented May 22, 2014 at 5:35
  • The early church fathers question shows no research effort at all. Good questions do - it's kind of lazy. After reading some church history books, or at the very least the Wikipedia page you'll be in a better place to ask focused questions.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Commented May 22, 2014 at 5:38
  • @curiousdannii You're right, I didn't know about the other META question before posting this one. HOWEVER, consider this question a specific META question regarding a Christianity.SE question - akin to a "reopen this question". Instead of a discussion within comments. Commented May 22, 2014 at 13:12

1 Answer 1


"Are overview questions a good fit for Christianity.SE?"

The answer to that is, "it depends." While there may be cases where the OP is looking for the viewpoint of multiple groups / denominations regarding a specific question, the key is that the question should be a focused question.

While overview questions may exist, that doesn't mean that they are good questions. All questions still need to be good questions, showing some level of research and understanding of the topic. Blanket overview questions which are those fishing for answers are not a good fit for Christianity.SE.

For a "deeper dive" please continue reading Caleb's detailed meta answer.

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