We usually discuss whether certain type class of question is on-topic. After discussion some types are, some others aren't.

But this doesn't determine all the rules. Some questions belong to both classes, for instance:

Have been trying to translate this.. hoping it some info of a great grandfather belongs to "translation without effort" and to "Read old handwritten Text"

Sure, some agree (and so I have to agree) that old handwritings question are on-topic. But the question is also to translate.

What to do in that case?


3 Answers 3


Option 1. Answer only the part of the question which is on-topic. Leave unaddressed the part of the question that is off-topic. In that example given above, just decypher and don't translate. This has a small Pro: it is a friendly approach but a huge contra. Namely, somebody will answer the whole question if this is not closed.


Option 3: always assume best intentions from a new user.

They may have confused "transcribe" and "translate" (which for Chinese would almost be the same). At least we could in such cases ask them if we have any doubts.

In any case it definitely is not the "bulk translation" service we had in mind when creating this off topic close reason. It is much closer to other questions on old handwritings that are well received.


Option 2. Close the question anyway. (The one I support)

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .