I suggest we use the following standards:
Has the OP attempted to translate this themselves. Even if you are not learning Chinese, if you haven't put any effort, in all honestly you are only interested in the answer out of curiosity.
Is there any benefit to learners of the language in either seeing the answer or doing some research into finding the answer. ...
There are a couple of reasons why I choose to close this question:
OP did not show any attempt to translate the two phrases in
The English meaning of those two phrases (断章取义 and 别有用心) could have been found easily in a
good online dictionary.
Every of his questions is "how to say something in English". As we
are not a translation service and this ...
My opinion is that we should stick to the definition of Sinitic Languages, which is the most rigorous and politically neutral way to deal with the topic. And it echoes the title of the website.
The easy ones
As @dROOOze says, Sinitic languages are surely on-topic, as they are all branches of what is commonly referred to as "Chinese".
Languages with ...
We can/should only consider migration when:
the question is off-topic or received poorly here, AND
the question would be welcome at another site, AND
the question is not older than 60 days (otherwise migration is impossible).
While a question may be simultaneously on-topic at multiple sites (e.g. Marvel movies at both Movies.SE and SciFi.SE), there are ...
Basically, blackgreen has done a fine write-up concerning opinion-based questions. However, the linked question is not only problematic because it's opinion-based: it's also not about the Chinese language, but rather about study methods, so it's also reasonable to close it as off-topic.
I envisage on/off-topic-ness as a kind of Euler ...
Translation requests are on topic as long as you have demonstrated “homework”, i.e.: pre-question effort.
You mention that you’ve tried:
searching possible English words
This is already more than enough “evidence” that you’re not just treating the site as a bulk translation resource.
You can simply ask one question with pictures of the cufflinks ...
The question on whether character identification/translation is allowed can be very frustrating. As I am trying to learn the language if one cannot ask about a basic logogram then how could they build a foundation of learning Mandarin?
I believe that closing such questions without acknowledging the prior effort is a disservice to language learners. Every ...
I'd like to add two points to xiahouzi79's answer:
Passing interest: I'm not sure how we can prove that the interest is "passing". If we can't enforce it, we should probably ignore this. Even if we could prove it, the passing interest is not necessarily a sign of bad question. If the OP has a passing interest but the question meets our standards and is an ...
At its heart the question was simply asking for the translation of two terms, and the sentence surrounding it was largely irrelevant. I don't think that the intention of the question's asker was malicious, but one could easily dress up many translation questions by embedding them in simple sentences. If "what is the translation of term X?" is a bad ...
I prefer to have something like:
We are happy to assist with your translation questions if you
are having a specific problem. Please
show your attempt at translation in your question and state which area
you are having difficulty with.
Open ended questions regarding the accuracy of a translation or asking
for a translation of a word or ...
Show your homework and what you're having issues with and you are good to go.
The crux, as you pointed out is with:
Open ended questions regarding the accuracy of a translation
trying to avoid questions without definite answers.
I would suggest narrowing your question to one specific thing and showing what you have so far - that way, you'...
I assume you mean penmanship and not grammar or word choice. I think you're right to be worried about making the question too narrow if it's just "is this writing sample legible?"
However, if you had a more general question about stroke formation, I think that might be a reasonable question. Think about asking concrete, specific questions about problems ...
tl;dr Tangut is not on-topic, because it's not sufficiently related to Chinese. The two languages only belong to the same family, Sino-Tibetan.
The linked question is off-topic, because it's not about the Chinese language. It is that simple. The best place to ask that question is probably Linguistics.SE.
The main arguments brought in favor of the on-topic-...
This is why I whipped up this post: How do I self-answer "What does this say?" The aim is to close them as a duplicate, thereby redirecting the user to something they can use (if they choose to do so).
Some other in-passing observations:
Looking at two recent posts along these lines...
What does this tattoo ...
Rejecting opinion-based questions is a specific design and community choice that originates from Chinese.SE's parent site: Stack Overflow.
Stack Overflow was born as a Q&A website for software professionals and enthusiasts with the specific and declared purpose of building a repository of knowledge.
Knowledge is the key term here. An opinion might be ...
It's not on topic
...in my modest opinion. Even if it were on-topic as being about cultural norms, by itself, it's too broad, as it includes several questions in one. Though, as an exercise, we can single out the main questions included in the OP and analyze those:
Can it be considered rude or offensive to just start speaking mandarin if I don't know the ...
Here are my current thoughts (others may disagree)...
Pros and cons
Does allowing resource questions harm the site? In some ways, yes.
There are multiple issues (see below), including broken links, obsolete answers, link-only answers, opinion-based answers, overly specific questions, and Google requests. (Although not all resource requests have these ...
I'll give my opinion, although others may reasonably disagree...
I really like these puzzles!! I feel like these are a good opportunity to have some fun and promote the site (as I think you did here and here). We're allowed to have some fun studying Chinese, right? The existence of Puzzling.SE is proof of concept that these can work.
I even suggested in ...
an interim answer:
supposed, a person goes to learn english in united kingdom, what can one infer?
english (the writing system) & “british accent” (spoken & listen) would be most likely.
now, if someone argued that wales & scotland are “indivisible parts” of the u.k.;
that the welsh & scots languages should be included in the “english ...
After re-reading @Mo.'s answer to the 2020 Moderator Election Q&A - Questionnaire, I found this sentence, which managed to struck a chord with me:
A good m.o. is to lean towards generosity and stay far away from dogma.
He's right. There's no reason for shunning questions that deviate from the traditional StackOverflow format in a lower-traffic ...
i would say no. they should be allowed.
the google ngram viewer doesn’t have “corpus” of traditional chinese.
and, search in simplified chinese would trigger a reminder:
Classical Chinese (before 1900) uses a vocabulary and grammar that differs significantly from modern Chinese.
we need some margins for questions asking in traditional chinese, or about ...
I think this kind of question can be separated into two part:
What is the difference between the two words?
Find a translation in some language for each of the word.
The first part is on topic, the second part is not.
The poster should be asked to give the explanations of the two words to someone who is familiar with or native in the target language to ...
I really have to take exception to this rule and would like to draw your attention to the need for the care that must be given to understanding Chinese Family names. Certainly in most of my interactions with Chinese peoples, being able to share a dialog must involve the use and understanding of Chinese surnames (some of the most common can be ...
There are different types of "translation" questions, and I think they should be handled differently:
The picture post: This common question has a picture of some artwork or product packaging and some text like "Is this Chinese? What does the character mean?". These questions should normally be off topic.
On the other hand, posts asking about the ...