Proposal: Constructed languages

I'm not clear on exactly whether a constructed languages site would include this. For example, if I were to post a question like "What are the fundamental problems with this verb system and how can they be fixed?" or something like that, would it be on-topic?


In my opinion they should definitely be on-topic. Stack Overflow would be a poor imitation of itself if it disallowed users from asking about their own code and limited itself to theoretical or general questions.

That some questions might be lower in quality than others seems unlikely, because (without trying to be snobby) conlangers are likely to be relatively articulate and educated people. I don't think conlangs.stackexchange is likely to have the issue of thousands of foreigners posting poor quality questions that have been through Google Translate as StackOverflow does.

However, there should still be rules against questions that are too broad. A question like 'what is wrong with this phonemic inventory?' is too broad. A question like 'does this phonemic inventory have features that a non-IE inventory is unlikely to have, and how could they be changed?' is a good, specific question.

Then again, I see no real problem with questions that are broad enough to have more than one answer on this stack exchange. Stack Exchange allows multiple answers to questions for good reason, and there is no right answer in a lot of cases.

I'd argue that "Non-IE phonemic inventory" is still too broad, ranging from Rapa Nui's fifteen phonemes to !Kung eighty-nine consonants... – Wtrmute Mar 17 at 14:24

There are really two main sides to this issue. Opponents of such a question likely value generality and questions that are more likely to help future users. Proponents likely value being able to solve a specific problem. Let me give a formal list of the pros and cons I see of allowing such questions.


-Cluttered site of many very similar questions

-Questions and answers that are unlikely to be directly applicable to anyone but the OP

-Many poor quality questions are likely to be in this form


-Allows specific problems to be addressed, whereas allowing only general questions is likely to leave out problematic or unique language features

-Give more questions and answers for other users to see

-Allows learning by example which is preferred over generalizations by many

-Many of the poor quality answers that would be of this form could likely be closed as opinion based instead

Anyone feel free to add to this list if you have points that I have not thought of.

To give my opinion, I think that while disallowing such questions would save a good deal of housekeeping for the site, the good questions that would be missed out on make it well worth allowing it.


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