Having seen many titles similar to

  • Help needed with P
  • How to Solve P
  • What is the best way of tackling P
  • A differential/Integral/Sum/Algebra question

etc. ( where P is latexified math part )

The side links are either showing unhelpful text, ( who is gonna decide which one the "help with integral needed" links on the side that would relate closely to question at hand, or even what they relate to).

Is it ok to for sake of clarity and emphasis on the main part of the question to change the titles to

  • P Solve
  • P Sum
  • P Evaluate

or some other short form that might not even include any text at all? ( again P is mathematical latex part).

It has been pointed out to me that not having any text in the title does not allow for right click in the new tab ( although shift click still works fine).

So should we hold on to proper grammar in titles or try to have minimal related information that would be of interest ignoring ( is it true, how to prove etc. ) and just have mathematical latex as title?


  • 1
    $\begingroup$ For future reference: Single line breaks in your input are ignored by the parser and replaced with run-in text, making your post hard to understand. You should try formatting your points a different way. I fixed it for you this time. $\endgroup$
    – user856
    Feb 28 '13 at 8:35

Personally, I would prefer to instead try to guide OP to learning how to post proper and helpful titles him-or herself. If you are dealing with a transient user, one question matters little; it you are dealing with a future regular, one should learn to do this oneself. Instead of simply changing the title, I would thus rather add the suggestion of a new title as a comment.

As a second point, I find it preferable to let a user talk in his or her voice. If an OP is unable or unwilling to post clear, coherent, and well-titled posts, then this could - or maybe should - impact the willingness of other users to interact with such OP. So leaving a question in OP's voice allows other users to form their own opinions.

Edit (03/03): While only one example, this thread illustrates one reason why I am no fan of users submitting revision suggestions that address how OP writes. Such suggestions apparently are common in suggested edits, but for the above reasons, I habitually decline them from my end.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I think the benefits of having well-titled posts far outweigh the disadvantage. $\endgroup$ Feb 28 '13 at 12:00
  • $\begingroup$ @Gerry Myerson: I see your point, Gerry. Users who don't bother to submit proper questions are a pet peeve of mine I guess. $\endgroup$ Feb 28 '13 at 13:06
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @Gerry: the benefits of having a *well-written post far outweigh the disadvantage. I always feel like kicking the editor when clicking on a well-titled post gives me a question text that is either incoherent or in imperative mood. $\endgroup$ Feb 28 '13 at 22:50
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    $\begingroup$ @Willie, sorry --- sometimes I have enough energy to edit an incoherent title, but not enough to edit the incoherent question to which it is attached. I fall back on the words of the Pirke Avot: "You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to desist from it entirely." $\endgroup$ Mar 1 '13 at 4:31
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @WillieWong The two-line snippets shown in the lists Questions and Unanswered usually suffice to detect such posts. Unfortunately, my newest toy ?tab=interesting does not have such snippets (nor do other home page sub-tabs). $\endgroup$
    – user53153
    Mar 2 '13 at 17:23

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