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Today we had this question: The Art of practicing electric contemporary guitar where OP was basically asking

So, I'm a classically trained guitar player who also plays contemporary guitar, mainly blues, jazz, rock and funk and I was wondering what are your thoughts and approaches to contemporary guitar and practice effectively.
[...]
What are your thoughts of practising contemporary guitar to achieve all of this

Too broad of a question, since they mentioned quite a few contemporary guitar genres, in addition to the fact that this would result in a list of an answer and there have been quite a few discussions on meta about these kind of questions, and they usually get closed.

A meta discussion on the topic had luser droog's insightful answer:

The perceived problem with asking for recommendations is that they easily fall into "big list" type of answers which are difficult to keep up-to-date, hard to vet for quality, and just generally fall apart and become pretty useless. There may be some site that still allow them, but IME as the site grows they get shut down.

Tim and I commented on the post saying pretty much the aforementioned fact:

Whereas this might be an interesting question, it is way too broad. I mean there is a very different approach in jazz guitar to rock guitar, from blues to funk etc. There are numerous books on each style – Shevliaskovic 3 hours ago

@Shevliaskovic I know that, Im just seeing what people have to offer in relation to this topic, It really confuses me why people can answer open ended questions on the forums here. – random10101010 2 hours ago

This is not a forum. Most accepted questions have answers that experienced posters write. For that to be facilitated, questions need to be focused and not open-ended. – Tim 1 hour ago

@Tim where does it specifically say that? – random10101010 1 hour ago

and OP, quite rightfully, asked where does it say that these kind of questions are off topic?

I wanted to refer him to the Help Center, but I couldn't find anything that explicitly said this. The closest thing would be in What types of questions should I avoid asking?, where there was:

If your motivation for asking the question is “I would like to participate in a discussion about ______”, then you should not be asking here.

OP's question might fall under this, but I have to say the question is not phrased exactly like that.

So basically to sum up, I would like to propose we add an extra bullet point either in What types of questions should I avoid asking? or What topics can I ask about here? where it specifies the questions that result in (opinion based or not) list-kind of answers are off topic.

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I suggest the following be added to the What types of questions should I avoid asking?:

  • you are asking for an open-ended list of items: “What are some examples of ______?”
  • your question is just soliciting a discussion: “What are your thoughts on ______ ?”

I also suggest in these cases we always point to the chat. Just because the main site is not equipped for these question we should still make use of the chat to be as helpful as possible.

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    I think these are good phrasings, +1 - only thing I think we should be careful of is not to close questions purely because they happen to contain those kind of phrases - we should be taking the questions as a whole and considering whether they are focused enough. – topo Reinstate Monica Apr 6 at 9:33
  • I pointed them to the chat, then saw this post here. Now I feel good about myself :) – user45266 Apr 6 at 20:16
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I don't think this area of question is necessarily way off-topic here. If the OP had phrased it more specifically - "How can a classical guitar player build a contemporary practice routine" - I would imagine that it would be possible to come up with pedagogically-valid answers. The main problem seems to be the "What are your thoughts..." phrasing, which arguably invites too many interpretations.

So basically to sum up, I would like to propose we add an extra bullet point either in What types of questions should I avoid asking? or What topics can I ask about here? where it specifies the questions that result in (opinion based or not) list-kind of answers are off topic.

It sounds useful, but we need to get the phrasing right. Many areas of music involve some degree of subjectivity, so invite a variety of different answers, and questions regarding 'what techniques could I try to achieve this' are often going to be open-ended by nature. We also don't want to prevent people from providing lists in answers - If a question is something like 'is this cadence ever used in XXX period of music', a list of examples might be a natural part of an answer.

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  • That question was closed at one point because it just became people saying "google X". I've locked it as I'd really not prefer that question being used to try and justify list based questions as it was a good example of answers to avoid. – Dom Apr 5 at 0:49
  • @Dom popular questions often do need mod work, but as it stands that question has many well-upvoted answers. If you've locked it, it suggests that you have a good answer to Shev's question in mind..? – topo Reinstate Monica Apr 5 at 9:44
  • I've removed the question I linked, as now it's locked, it's no longer a nice example! but for the record, it was music.stackexchange.com/questions/42351/… – topo Reinstate Monica Apr 6 at 9:29

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