About: Is there a Pandora client for Windows Phone 7?

This feels like a recommendation question, in the form of Q&A is Hard, Let’s Go Shopping!, and appears to be facing close votes. I am wondering which types of these questions we would accept...

So, which types of questions will we allow to generate answers that present applications?

  • 2
    Side note: "it is already on its way to being closed" - one of the most helpful things you can do on a young site is leave guiding comments. If you are voting to close, and there are not any comments about why, I strongly encourage you to consider adding one. These signposts are invaluable to educating the community. Apr 24 '12 at 23:28
  • @RebeccaChernoff: Good point, reforming that sentence as it wasn't meant negative and will try to leave positive guiding comments from now on. :) Apr 24 '12 at 23:32
  • Since there were close votes and no comments I just took any opening to prod for educating the community. (; Apr 24 '12 at 23:37

On Android we discourage "Is there an app for X?" questions. As you mention they are often just shopping recommendations and exclude non-app solutions for, usually, no good reason.

We try to rewrite the "good" ones in "How can I do X?" questions. The answer may be an app, but that's up to the answerer, and allows other solutions to be posted. It avoids the problems of shopping recs and fits the format outlined in the FAQ very well.

Some questions just can't be rewritten like that though, and we try not to close most of those on Android if they're clear and have detailed criteria. You can't use anything but an app as a file browser, for example.

In the case of the Pandora question, it isn't clear to me whether a mobile website for streaming or something like that would work just as well. If the question stays open, it should be broadened beyond apps or clarify the criteria.

  • 1
    I guess this is an example of the 'How can I?' question framing model.
    – Thomas
    Apr 26 '12 at 8:26
  • Ditto for this one (that I accidentally duplicated)
    – Rowland Shaw Mod
    May 1 '12 at 7:56

I asked that question to explore what questions work and what don't.

In my opinion, a question that is "I can do X on my Android / iOS device, is there an app to do it on WP7?" especially where X is very common usage for Android or iOS devices.

While a question like "What are good music apps" does not work because it becomes a poll.

  • 1
    But why ask a question if the Marketplace on the phone or the MS website, or perhaps even Google result in applications? Why should we do the effort the users could easily do? If a user shows he done effort, that's a different story. But setting the site open for a ton of Is there an X app? where the results are those seen when entering X in the Marketplace, is not what the network is about. It is rather about learning, which you can get to by asking for advice (the different official ways to find apps, ...). In any case, I didn't mean to bother your question but want to prevent a flood. Apr 25 '12 at 0:02
  • Related: Chat discussion between us Apr 25 '12 at 0:19

On Superuser or Serverfault it is okay to ask questions that if there is any software that can do X. In fact, these questions are very common.

If these sorts of questions are not allowed on this site, I think that there will be a point where we will run out of questions to ask, as what you can do with this operating system is relatively limited, compared to classic computer operating systems.

  • 1
    Uhm no, it isn't on Super User. Check out the software-rec tag there for instructions which are accepted, but the more general ones are disallowed because the OP is not experiencing any problems and hasn't spent any effort looking for them. Questions about Windows Phone software are most likely fine, which doesn't quite limit what you can ask here, but questions looking for are not acceptable as per the blog post and should rather be reformed (as per our software-rec tag at SU) or turned into a question asking for advice. Example close... Apr 28 '12 at 9:44
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    @TomWijsman: That question was not even closed as a shopping recommendation. Instead of blindly following rules it may be a good idea to remember why they exist in the first place. Are any of the bullet points listed in your linked StackExchange blog post even relevant here? There are cases when an answer involving an app recommendation could be useful to people. eg. windowsphone.stackexchange.com/a/231/157
    – paradroid
    Apr 28 '12 at 10:24
  • Looking for software/apps falls under shopping and/or recommendations. I don't see what bullet points you are talking about. Note that the application you linked can be easily found if he searched for it. I'm not blindly following any rules, but preventing people to spent effort where the OP has done no effort at all. That's covered under the first sentence here, and further outlined by the Shopping blog post from my question... Apr 28 '12 at 10:39
  • Can you find me a 3G Data app? VS My carrier has no 3G Data Summary, what can I do to monitor it? Apr 28 '12 at 10:43

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