It seems there is a vocal component of our base users that think that well written questions that ask for our experienced based opinions on "what job(s) they should take/look for" or "what skills would be useful" should be acceptable questions.

This question to me:


Is clearly tell me about what your job path was that was successful so I can emulate that success. Which is just a well written, but still a version of what job should I take.

The original decision, which I agreed with then, was that we did not want these types of questions clogging up the site and making it useless. I think in the early days of the site it probably would have clogged up the site with too much noise.

Now I am far less worried about those questions clogging up the site. We have a great user base and some incredible experts(and pseudo-experts like myself) that could provide some very helpful guidance in some of these situations. I think our signal to noise ratio may be able handle a hit from a few bad questions that might come in if we opened up the site to these questions though.

We would still close bad questions that have no context or ask which is better as those are bad subjective. And I think we should still close questions that are asking us to make a decision for the OP. But questions asking something like:

I am here and want to get to there what path is going to put me in the best position to do that?


I would like to some day be able to get a job doing X, How can i get to there from here?

Are probably questions that could be very helpful to our users.

If it becomes a problem we can always put the prohibition back in place.

Should we lift the prohibition on questions asking which skills to learn or job to take while leaving the prohibition on questions asking us to make a decision for them?

  • 5
    For the record I tried to ask this question with the bias leaning toward opening up the topic, I am not actually sure if it is a good idea. But I think there is value in having this discussion again with our current base. Aug 2, 2017 at 20:40
  • "there is a vocal component of our base users..." Really? I can't say I've really noticed that. Is that based on comments? Chat? People answering questions that are later closed as off-topic?
    – Lilienthal Mod
    Aug 3, 2017 at 7:25
  • @Lilienthal - Mostly comments complaining about the questions being closed... As I said I am not sure I am on board with this change and early voting seems to indicate that this policy is still a good one to keep around. Aug 3, 2017 at 14:37
  • +1 for a well-written and thought out question.
    – user8365
    Aug 11, 2017 at 14:59
  • "able to handle a hit from a few bad questions" is a terrible argument for not closing bad questions. Aug 12, 2017 at 16:21
  • @Dukeling - I am not suggesting that a bad questions be acceptable. Just that we lift the prohibition on asking for career advice. But it seem the vast majority of the community thinks this is still a bad idea. Aug 13, 2017 at 1:41

1 Answer 1



Just a few of the main reasons I consider these not just out of scope but entirely unsuitable for SE:

  • the highly personalised nature of such questions ("what makes sense for me?") which:
    • makes it almost impossible to answer (we don't know the OP's priorities, preferences or exact situation)
    • renders any answers useless for anyone but the OP
  • the fact that any advice given is impossible to qualify as being purely a matter of opinion
  • the fact that answers will rapidly, if not immediately, become outdated
  • the danger of this turning into AskReddit if you phrase it as "what was your experience?"

Sure, our user base is better qualified than most to give career advice, but that's just not what this site is for. That simply doesn't fit a Q&A format. Users that want to discuss their career or ask for informal personal advice can do so in Chat.

I see no good reason why we should open to floor to such questions on the main site.

  • 2
    Absolutely support this point - of all the individuals in my industry I know none who had the same career path as any other! Everyone is different, has different skills, experience, contacts, and even luck...
    – Rory Alsop
    Aug 3, 2017 at 9:32

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