One of the standard off-topic close reasons is this:
"Questions seeking product or service recommendations are off-topic because they tend to become obsolete quickly. Instead, describe your situation and the specific problem you're trying to solve."
Can we clarify exactly what that means, and what types of questions count as off-topic because of it?
The link in the close reason above goes to a Jeff Atwood blog post from 2010 called Q&A is Hard, Let's Go Shopping!, in which he outlines the problems with typical product recommendation requests. However, he also shows what a good product recommendation request looks like.
I've seen several different classes of questions closed for this reason. Here are a few recent examples:
Types of questions:
"Is this particular service any good?"
"How do I find this information?"
- Where can I find the historical intraday record for Nifty 150 stocks?
- where can I get options historical data and charting tools?
"How do I use this particular website/service?"
"How do I accomplish this task?"
- How to accept payments using the community/website name with a personal bank account?
- I want a personal dashboard to monitor data from several sources. Which software tool to use?
- Which brokers offer trading API for stocks and currency exchange?
"Where can I get a better deal than what I'm currently getting?"
- How to transfer money more cheaply from Hong Kong to Canada, without HSBC?
- How can I get more interest than the 2.8% my bank is offering me on my $60,000 AUD?
"Which is the best product/service?"
- Is there a good book that talks about all the type of products to invest?
- Desktop Software to Help Stock Dummies Make Money?
- Which brokerages offer the best streaming quotes (tick level) for the best price?
Should all of these categories of questions be off-topic?
Please note: I'm not arguing for or against any of the specific questions linked. These are just recent examples of the classes of questions that I have noticed have been closed as a "product or service recommendation" question. I'm only asking for general guidelines on what kinds of questions constitute a "product or service recommendation" request.