Following the 7 Essential Meta Questions of Every Beta, let's start to discuss about what we should include in our FAQ.

I think the main points we should touch are:

  • Can I request a translation?
  • Should I post in Russian or English?
  • Can I ask for resources?
  • Asking the meaning of a single word.
  • to be continued...

7 Answers 7

  • Russian to any language translations

    I think this kind of questions should not be welcome here. They should be asked at anylanguage SE. What should be welcome is a request of explaining a word or a phrase if it is not easily found in a dictionary or the asker shows effort.

  • any language to Russian translations

    Should be definitely welcome, provided that the phrase or word in another language is explained unless it is a well known English word or phrase. We don't want questions like:

How do I say Էշն ի՞նչ գիտի նուշն ինչ է in Russian?

However, if the phrase in the foreign language is explained thoroughly, then the question should be welcome.

  • Agreed! I'll make my answer CW. Feel free to fix/edit/improve. :)
    – Alenanno
    Jun 22, 2012 at 14:05
  • Is it Armenian? What does it mean in Russian?
    – Olga
    Jul 9, 2012 at 16:07
  • @Olga: It is in Armenian, and it's an adage that can be used in case when someone refuses to like something really great because of his or her low taste and instead likes something primitive and valueless, but obvious. Literally, the adage can be translated as "How would an ass know what an almond is". You could say that to a person who says he doesn't like classical music, and prefers rap instead, for example. Or to a person who likes french fries more than some exquisite french recipe. I can't think of a Russian equivalent. Can you? Should I maybe ask the question on the main site? :) Jul 9, 2012 at 23:12
  • Actually, yes, ask it! I think it is a nice question, and not an obvious one, too. The closest I know is saying "губа не дура", but it has the opposite meaning.
    – Olga
    Jul 10, 2012 at 6:31
  • 1
    @Armen: как свинья в апельсинах?
    – Quassnoi Mod
    Jul 12, 2012 at 20:45
  • Since @Quassnoi named the pig, I have thought of метать бисер перед свиньями
    – Olga
    Jul 15, 2012 at 18:47

Premise: Feel free to edit/improve/fix this answer so, when it'll be complete, we can use it for our FAQ.

  1. Can I request a translation?

    We do not forbid translation requests but note that this is not a translation service, so we will close any translation request that does not show research effort. Make sure you clearly show it in your question.

    • Russian to any language translations
      This kind of questions should be better asked in the sites dedicated to the destination language.
    • any language to Russian translations
      Welcome as long as you provide enough explanation/detail about the original expression/word and you also show research effort, of course.
  2. Should I post in Russian or English?

    Questions and answers can be written both in Russian and English on the Main Site only. The Meta site should be in English only, though. This is a request by the Stack Exchange team so they can communicate with us. So, on the Main site you can choose either language, but we suggest a guideline that has been used on other Stack Exchange sites as well:

    • If the question is in English, please answer in English;
    • If the question is in Russian, please answer in Russian.

    In either case, if you're not as comfortable in the question's language, you can provide a brief but complete answer in the original language, and then a more detailed answer in your preferred language. Other users may help improve your translation. Translations are not mandatory, they are just helpful for users who are not fully bilingual. But keep in mind that if your answer is correct without providing a translation, the OP might not consider it as much as it deserves.

    Note that in the Meta site, if you post in Russian, you should post an English version, because it's used by the SE team, which doesn't know Russian.

  3. Can I ask for resources?


  4. Asking the meaning of a single word

    Like Translation, show research effort. Before posting, check if:

    • It's in the dictionary;
    • It's easily found in a Google search.

    If the answer to this two points is no, you can ask simple questions like this one.

  • So far I agree, though I'd try to make answers shorter (FAQ should be read often). For no. 1, I'd allow any language. A French-speaking person may need a translation and be unable to translate the word even into English. Same the other way round.
    – texnic
    Jun 20, 2012 at 6:56
  • @texnic fixed. :)
    – Alenanno
    Jun 20, 2012 at 9:14
  • I think that it RLU is a perfect place to ask for resources.
    – Olga
    Jul 10, 2012 at 10:48
  • @Olga Well, questions like "Is there a good book to study Russian" is quite broad... They don't fit well. I'd vote for off topic. We can still make a single question grouping resources, if we want. But leaving it on topic will low the standards.
    – Alenanno
    Jul 10, 2012 at 11:12
  • @Alenanno I'd vote this question off, but not as an off-topic, but as a question that is too vague. But if someone would ask for a dictionary of computer terminology, I'd leave the question.
    – Olga
    Jul 10, 2012 at 11:19
  • What if we introduce a section in faq that says "if you want to ask a question and you cannot find a tag for it, maybe it is not the right place to ask this question".
    – Olga
    Jul 10, 2012 at 11:25
  • @Olga That's not exact. I mean, what if there isn't a tag that we need but we forgot about? We want users to create tags (the right ones). :D
    – Alenanno
    Jul 10, 2012 at 11:30
  • @Alenanno True, I know. I was thinking, how to avoid naming all possible questions one would ask or could not ask on this site and send the reader to look for a tag instead.
    – Olga
    Jul 10, 2012 at 11:33

Can I request a translation?

I would add an essential requirement for all translations: provide as much context as you can.

  1. How do I translate "run" into Russian?

    This question is bad, as there are several hundreds of possible translations.

  2. How do I translate: "I run" into Russian?

    This question is also bad, as "run" is a polivalent verb in English and changes its meaning depending on the valency. Do you "run somewhere", "run something", or "run out of something"?

  3. How do I translate "I run this company" into Russian? It means "I'm in charge for this company and making decisions critical to its functioning".

    This question is OK.

  • I would also add "..and I couldn't find the translation that fits me in the dictionary" to the third alternative.
    – Olga
    Jul 16, 2012 at 8:58

It seems that our old FAQ is not teaching new users very well. Maybe, we should think what else we need to add there?

I'd suggest to start with explaining what SE sites are about. We need to state clearly that:

  1. it is not a forum, it is a question and answer site.
  2. users should use upvotes and downvotes instead of repeating questions or writing "I don't like the answer by ...".
  3. it is a "grown-up" site where people come for information, and obscene language, jokes, no matter how original, etc are not welcome.

What do you think?

  • Let's translate our FAQ to Russian (for those visitors who are not very comfortable with English).
    – texnic
    Nov 10, 2012 at 11:13

Maybe it would be nice to put a section in FAQ about meta site, specifying that it is encouraged to participate in meta discussions and to visit it every 3-4 days (that is, if the person is interested in how the site develops).


I would try our best to avoid making anything like the Linguistics Community FAQ: it's too long; the majority of our users will not read, let alone follow it I am afraid. I like our current FAQ very much, but I would definitely translate it as well as add a couple of words on asking and answering best practice.

  • It's meant as an addition also for those who don't know English very well as we'll be providing the Russian version there.
    – Alenanno
    Nov 10, 2012 at 11:26
  • @Alenanno, with all respect I strongly disagree. To function, FAQ should be short, kept clean and contain the rules which are really important. Too many rules/recommendations, and people won't follow them any more. The Russian translation should also be clearly provided in connection to the official FAQ, i.e. linked directly and unambiguously from meta.russian.stackexchange.com/faq. This is my opinion. Let's wait for reaction from other people.
    – texnic
    Nov 10, 2012 at 11:30
  • You misunderstood. We are not going to state more FAQ, we are simply going to explain them better and translate that into Russian. Besides, when a new user will complain about something you can link the specific question to the user so that our actions are all backed up.
    – Alenanno
    Nov 10, 2012 at 11:32

I started a separate question on What RL.SE is and is not. It would probably be useful to link to it from FAQ or include into FAQ. Linking may be better, as that would allow us to continue updating that thread.

  • 1
    Ok! It's better we don't fill the real FAQ page too much, otherwise people won't read it. :D
    – Alenanno
    Jun 21, 2012 at 9:43
  • @Alenanno: Good point.
    – Aleks G
    Jun 21, 2012 at 10:28
  • @AleksG: you should use up-voting instead of "good point" :D
    – texnic
    Nov 10, 2012 at 11:15
  • @texnic I know, don't worry about it (I've got 15K+ rep across various sites)
    – Aleks G
    Nov 10, 2012 at 14:22

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