We love our site, but there is a whole world of people out there who might not even know it exists. When they do find it, their first impression will either scare them away or keep them around. Given this, let's take a hard look at the questions and answers here and make sure newcomers see the site at its best!

Below you'll find ten questions randomly selected from this site. What do you think about each of them and their answers? Are they the best they can be or can they be improved? Would they look interesting and inviting to an outsider or are they a little embarrassing?

Upvote the corresponding post here on meta when we're awesome. Downvote when our content just isn't quite up to par.

Oh, and do comment to let everyone know your thoughts and take part in this conversation.


Stack Exchange has stopped doing these site evaluations for every site, so we're going to do one ourselves. These are some randomly selected questions from 30-40 days ago. Try and take on the view of a first-time user and ask yourself "Are this post and it's answers useful? Is it better than other stuff out there?"

Leave a comment explaining your reasoning if at all possible.

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locked by NickC Oct 9 '12 at 16:32

closed as too localized by Rarity Jul 20 '12 at 4:28

This question is unlikely to help any future visitors; it is only relevant to a small geographic area, a specific moment in time, or an extraordinarily narrow situation that is not generally applicable to the worldwide audience of the internet. For help making this question more broadly applicable, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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I totally stole the format from Cognitive Sciences' evaluation. Got the questions from a Stack Exchange employee using the same algorithm they get the "real" eval questions from. –  Rarity Jul 12 '12 at 19:53
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I'm a real eval! /runs away –  Aarthi Jul 12 '12 at 20:08
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Evaluation time has expired (not that it means much in this case) so I have ceremonially closed this post. Considering the amount of voters taking part, the evaluation seems quite positive. –  Rarity Jul 20 '12 at 4:30

10 Answers 10

Should I avoid any recruitment agency?

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The edits that were done to it really helped focus the question to a good one. The answers are fine as well. –  jcmeloni Jul 14 '12 at 22:45

What's the correlation between guys with longer hair and professionalism?

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2  
Although the question could have been phrased better, and at the end of the day it's about a young person not understanding the employee handbook, there's merit to the spirit of the question. The top two answers are good, and patient with the OP; the remaining answers are rather noisy. –  jcmeloni Jul 14 '12 at 22:51

Am I damaging my reputation by arriving and leaving on-time?

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I can't vote one way or another -- I would upvote this for the core question being a fair one here; however, the text itself could be cleaned up especially in light of additional changes and more information given along the way. It's good that the info came out, but it does render some of the answers less specific than they could be (given they were written before edits, etc). But I would downvote on the quality of the answers (beyond what I mentioned above) because many of them stray from the question at hand. –  jcmeloni Jul 14 '12 at 22:08
    
@jcmeloni quality of answers in this case could probably correlate to relatively high number of question views (>1K); this likely attracted some slippery answers; I favorited the question to return to it later and find out if some answers indeed deserve downvote –  gnat Jul 16 '12 at 0:21
    
@gnat most of those answers are from insiders so I can't blame the Hackernews/reddit effect. Most posts that have hit reddit/HN will have some lovely non-answers at the bottom of the thread that I've deleted/converted to comments. This one doesn't –  Rarity Jul 16 '12 at 1:42
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@Rarity right. This question doesn't have answers that look obviously bad to me - that's why I noted it will take time to figure ones (if any) deserving downvote. Pretty interesting case –  gnat Jul 16 '12 at 1:51
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@gnat what additional information/changes do you think should be addressed in the question? I edited in the info he gave in the comments –  Rarity Jul 20 '12 at 13:15
    
@Rarity well current Q wording tends to attract answers that swing a little too much so to speak, while managing to remain within the bounds of relevance. I'd consider Atwood's transform - y'know, into something like, "I work 5-9 while most my colleagues overtime. What do I need to learn to tell if this difference could impose a risk of damaging my reputation?" Transform Q to attract converging answers instead of diverging ones so to speak... –  gnat Jul 20 '12 at 13:41
    
...Transform Q to attract converging answers instead of diverging ones so to speak. Answers like You need to learn 1) legal specifics <for the following reasons> 2) company culture <for the following reasons> 3) your manager expectations <for the following reasons> - answers such that one could not post another answer suggesting opposite and feel right about it. –  gnat Jul 20 '12 at 13:41

What to highlight as a new developer in an interview?

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1  
The core question is a good one; in a perfect world it would've been structured in such a way as to be less specific to the individual and more general, but the answer was a fine one that didn't go too deeply into localized answers (and where it did, it was clear it was an example that could be used as a template for others to fill in on their own). –  jcmeloni Jul 14 '12 at 21:38

Recruiting Recent College Graduates

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2  
A good question; the accepted answer is a good answer. The others are more comments than answers (a few were already converted) and one answer that was long and generated a lot of discussion on its own wasn't a particularly good answer (half OT, half repeating an existing answer) although it was clearly an honest attempt. –  jcmeloni Jul 15 '12 at 1:28

How do I negotiate a higher parking allowance as an intern?

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3  
I actually like this question in theory -- I wish it were more of "how do I negotiate as an intern" and not specific to one thing like "parking allowance". I do believe we want to be a place that lets people at any level of their professional career ask for guidance, but something so specific and, well, trivial, doesn't help our perception. I answered this question pretty quickly after it was asked, specifically so I could give a pretty thorough answer and avoid what I thought would be a bunch of one-liner or discussion-y answers. Seemed to work... –  jcmeloni Jul 15 '12 at 1:35
    
@jcmeloni I usually delete one liner/discussiony answers anyway... –  Rarity Jul 15 '12 at 2:09
    
I convert them to comments, but it sure is nice to avoid having to either of those things. :) –  jcmeloni Jul 15 '12 at 2:47

Recovering from bad career decisions

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1  
I don't like this one as it stands; the question in the title is one that would be on-topic and useful to others, but the question actually is wrapped in personal examples so much as to be pretty localized. Both answers, while thoughtful and helpful for the user, speak directly to that localization. While I'm sure that some people will read this Q & its As and be helped by it, I think it's an example of something that we could've guided better, earlier (a few deleted answers speaks to that). –  jcmeloni Jul 15 '12 at 1:23

Dealing with bipolar boss

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3  
Not a fan of this question purely because it's of the "non-professional health diagnosis" variety; if it were something like "my boss has told us he has X disorder and I want to know how best to work with him besides what HR might tell us" then that would get more toward the types of questions we want to foster. The answer is certainly thoughtful and helpful, though. –  jcmeloni Jul 15 '12 at 1:31

Should I consider how long I've been at a new job before trying to start a family?

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I don't like this question, because only the OP can say for sure. Points 1 and 3 in the OP's question completely depend on the company (which depends on the locale, and its laws), and point 2 would be best answered (if rephrased) at Parenting SE or something similar. –  jcmeloni Jul 15 '12 at 1:38
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for this one, it would be interesting to try "Atwood's transform" of recommendation type questions. How do I tell whether it's OK to start family soon after starting the job? What factors to consider to decide (what do I need to learn to tell) whether it's OK etc...? That's just a draft, "it's OK" part is to be clarified from the question context. The accepted answer actually fits the "transformed" question better, by listing things to consider. It is also probably worth tagging united-states, given the accepted FMLA-context –  gnat Jul 16 '12 at 19:00

Agreeing to mandatory arbitration as condition of employment -- what rights are given up?

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What's wrong with this question? I don't disagree with the score at all, I'd just like more explicit feedback here. Due to the surprisingly high score on the question there appears to be some reason beyond "it sucks" –  Rarity Jul 13 '12 at 19:24
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I think it is a very typical situation. It is clear what you are giving up, but the unstated question is how to put it in real terms. How likely are you to need arbitration, and how likely are you to win? –  mhoran_psprep Jul 14 '12 at 2:13
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I do not like questions that can only really be answered by a lawyer; in this case, the only person who could really answer "How much of her rights would she be giving up if she chose to sign this agreement?" would be someone reading the agreement and understanding it, e.g. a lawyer giving legal advice, which is not the same as a bunch of random people on the internet. –  jcmeloni Jul 15 '12 at 1:42

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