A big part of questions I've looked into since the site started was just a variation of "how to say/ask ... in a friendly way/without being rude".

The answer can be broken down into "Simply do it, but in a friendly way".

All the answers are giving a lot of additional information that are somewhat helpful for the poster, but just guesses out of the blue, since the OP usually isn't specifying what exactly is the problem and why it's not solved by just asking for it.

So I propose a custom close reason for topics that could be answered by "Just do so in a friendly way" since they encourage wild guesses about how to get a specific solution for answers, while the OP isn't specifying the kind of answer being expected.

I'm not saying these kinds of OP's are not useful in general, but I think this kind of post has to be given in strict scopes that define the circumstances an answer has to consider to be accepted, so everyone can read why OP has trouble with "Just asking in a friendly way" and/or isn't considering this option or why it indeed isn't a option.

  • 2
    Well, most interpersonal disputes can be solved by just dealing with it "in a friendly way".
    – NVZ
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 10:45
  • @NVZ: I mean someone asking this probably doesn't even with bad intention or out of laziness. Probably hasn't even considered that the best option is by just doing it in a friendly way. But thats my whole point: If an OP is fully satisfied by that answer, do we really want that posts getting the same answers over and over(I made this post, since I got annoyed of this similar answers)?....
    – dhein
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 10:58
  • ...Or should it be closed and refer to some kind of master post, just explaining that if there are no additional restrictions, not being mentioned in OP, the problem would be best solved by simply expressing it in a friendly way.
    – dhein
    Commented Jul 31, 2017 at 11:00

2 Answers 2


"Just do it in a friendly way" isn't an answer if it doesn't explain how to do it and what "a friendly way" is. Questions like this are usually looking for phrasing suggestions, ways to approach the other person, when to speak up versus let something go, etc.

If the question doesn't provide enough context to do that, then it should be put on hold as unclear or too broad until the OP supplies more details. If the question does provide those details, then answers like you describe are not answers and should be downvoted and community-deleted if not fixed.


My problem with this type of question is: most are actually asking

I want to do this socially inappropriate thing. How do I do it without suffering any social consequences?

These are questions that can't (or shouldn't) be answered on its face, but by the rules here, that is all that is allowed.

These questions are inherently psychopathic. (I would have never said "psychopath" as that seems like extreme hyperbole, but I looked up sociopath to be sure I was using the word correctly, and indeed, psychopath is correct.)

I just think these questions don't belong on a site that is about treating each other decently. These questions are pursuing the opposite of that, and I don't believe we can reform the poster with the soft-sell required by site policy. Sadly this stack is a magnet for these questions.

  • 4
    So, there are two issues with this: 1. Telling someone "don't do that" is 100% acceptable here (with some specific exceptions where you're ignoring the choice the OP is making) and 2. I really, really don't think that "most" of these questions are asking what you claim. Many users here are often asking very simple things that shouldn't be considered rude in the first place but are sometimes overly worried about how they'll be received.
    – Catija
    Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 22:11

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