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Are book recomendations considered poll/list questions?

[This question]]1 was closed as 'subjective' and 'asking for a list'. But I fail to understand why. For example, I extensively use other SE sites like http://askubuntu.com.The questions there like this one or this one are considered to be very useful for anyone approaching the subject.

This site being about Christianity and this site itself is not the Bible, but tries to answer questions in the light of Bible, I am sure Christianity allows room for discussion outside bible. Since the 1st century, so many great books have been written explaining Christianity so it would be natural for an SE site to point to a in-depth treatise on a subject if some one needs to know. I would believe such question would fall under FAQ. One such example of such books would be _Mere Christianity by C.S Lewis. May be John Stott's Basic Christianity would qualify, but I would not know.

So would you please explain how asking for a list of good books on the subject of an SE site qualify as 'subjective'. Also how does asking for a list disqualify as a SE question?

marked as duplicate by Caleb, Shog9 Sep 8 '11 at 15:23

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

  • Note: I already considered question, but that really does not answer this meta.christianity.stackexchange.com/questions/195/… – Jamess Sep 8 '11 at 8:26
  • There's a fair bit of discussion in that question, to the point where I suspect you could ask an informed follow-up question without requiring the entire thing to be rehashed here. Short answer is, we're not big fans of exceedingly broad "what are your favorite X?" questions... As you note, countless books have been written on the subject, so recommending one (or even a dozen) comes down to the beliefs and preferences of the person recommending, and the needs of the person being recommended to. Neither are well-suited by a question targeted at, "For any one who approach Christianity" – Shog9 Sep 8 '11 at 16:23

List questions are not encouraged on any SE site. They are tollerated on a few but never encouraged. Additionally, each site has it's own guidelines for what is allowed or not. We're still working on ours.

Stack exchanges sites are focused on questions that can have a single correct answer. Lists run afoul of the FAQ on this point under questions NOT to ask:

every answer is equally valid

Particularly on a beta site where we are trying to encourage expert level questions, we are trying to avoid these kind of questions. The other thread on book recommendations points out that those types of questions in particular have two different kinds of troubles. Mark also comments that:

It's tempting to see book recommendation questions open elsewhere on the site and say we should allow them here, but that way lies madness.

See the rest of his answer for an explanation as to why.

There is no reason you can't recommend a book title for further reading on a topic if it goes along with your answer, but threads that only ask for book recommendations are discouraged.

  • How recommendations on book name discuss on Christianity become 'all answers equally valid'. I was looking for may be a discussion on describing what is subjective or asking for lists from a meta of a popular SE site. – Jamess Sep 8 '11 at 8:56
  • 1
    @Jamess: Mark's answer to the other question has lots of links to meta posts on other sites discussing why book recommendations are considered lists and not good fits for the SE format. Your question here isn't asking much about 'subjective' issues so much as book recommendations which you give specific examples for. Book recommendations are exactly what waxeagle and mark deal with on the other thread. If you have a different example of a "subjective" problem question on the site, feel free to bring that up, but everything you give in this question is just about book recommendations. – Caleb Sep 8 '11 at 9:01

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