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I just asked this question:

A user with many more points than I added the tag, and I would like an answer for that country specifically. But I also didn't want to exclude any other countries.

Is it the consensus of the VIP on this site that separate versions of the same question be asked for every country? That's sensible actually. Otherwise, I'd ideally want one well-written answer to my question that includes details for every country/region/etc. for which there are different answers.

For my question, I'd be surprised if there were that many regions/countries for which there were distinct answers.

If it's acceptable to do so, is there any way that I can explicitly indicate that I'd like answers for all countries/regions?

My question is similar to this existing meta question:

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Note: the question that you wrote doesn't include any reference to a country. The person who added the tag either retrieved the information from your bio, or from comments which have since been deleted.

A question that can't narrow down the question to one or two countries is not a good question for this site. There are 200+ countries. While they may fall into several groups there is no way that the users of this site could vote on the quality of the answers without knowing the situation for multiple countries.

from the existing meta question you mention:

First, ask yourself: Does this particular question need a country tag? Some questions are universal and really don't need it (e.g. debt reduction strategies). On the other hand, questions that touch on taxation, laws, or regulations often do need it.

Can a bank cash or deposit a check made out to my minor child relies entirely on banking regulations.

So all questions don't require a country tag, but your question does require a tag.

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Otherwise, I'd ideally want one well-written answer to my question that includes details for every country/region/etc.

This is not only difficult. There are too many countries, and there is no single expert. So it is more likely that there can be multiple answers. There was similar question in past and you can see the kind of answers it has got; its got answers only for few geographies. How to correct a mistake made when writing a check?. If one of the answers get upvoted, it is lost. If someone comes along and needs to know it for a different country; he can't find an answer and there is no way to indicate to community that I am looking for an answer to xyz country.

For example the question may have answers for US/UK, but doesn't have an answer for China. How can he indicate to community that he needs an answer for China? That is where more and more on this site for question that need regulation, law, etc; the recommendation is have a country.

There are tons of question on say financial-literacy, calculation, and other tags that don't have a country tag as most of these are almost universal [there could still be a odd country where the concepts may be different :)]

For my question, I'd be surprised if there were that many regions/countries for which there were distinct answers.

Possibly yes, possibly NO. Unless we have answers for all countries and categorize this into a,b,c ...

If it's acceptable to do so, is there any way that I can explicitly indicate that I'd like answers for all countries/regions?

You could. Quite a few questions in past have a tag for one country, and in the body make a request for few more specific countries. As the Europe block is moving towards a single standard, quite a few request for the Euro Zone. However if you don't mention single country and mention it for all ... chances are it would get closed as too broad.

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    +1 in particular for "How can he indicate to community that he needs an answer for China?". I didn't think of that, but that's an excellent point. – Chris W. Rea Dec 20 '16 at 17:48
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Kenny, consider the opposite to your question here. You ask the check question, and a knowledgable US member responds. You then mention you are in the UK, and another member points out that (a) first person to answer was arrogant to believe all members are asking US questions, and (b) offers you a snarky reminder you didn't identify country. Then in a display of his knowledge offers the correct UK-centric response.

Wow, that was a lot of hypothesising. Could happen. A good portion of questions here can really use the country tag.

  • Maybe your point, relevant to practicalities, is more important. But assuming no bad behavior, it would seem easy enough for people to contribute answers that cover multiple countries too. Why not imagine 'I ask the question; get a US answer; say I want a UK answer too; get a UK answer; and now the question has answers for both'? – Kenny Evitt Dec 20 '16 at 2:26
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    Because my hypothetical was what we experience here, hundreds of times since I joined. I didn't need to cite a particular example, as a good number got nasty and were edited out. The answer to your title question is an emphatic yes. The rest is commentary. – JoeTaxpayer Dec 20 '16 at 2:32
  • Understood – thanks for patiently answering my meta-question. – Kenny Evitt Dec 20 '16 at 15:57
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    Germany: "What's a check ?" – Marianne013 Dec 20 '16 at 16:21
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    @KennyEvitt - questions that are well articulated and aren't just rants are always welcome. The board is member run, and we are always discussing the how and why of all we do. Some things that aren't obvious come from the history of the site, and ultimately aim towards creating the best Q&A for the members. Glad you came back for a visit. – JoeTaxpayer Dec 20 '16 at 19:35
  • @Marianne013 Good one. Took me a while to understand :) – Dheer Dec 21 '16 at 10:02
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I added the tag based on the location in your bio. Had your bio not indicated a location, I would have posted a comment requesting information about your jurisdiction, as it is pertinent to your question. Whether or not you can cash a check [called "cheque", where I come from] is based on laws and banking regulations — and those most certainly vary by jurisdiction [like the spelling].

It has been our practice to permit and encourage variations of questions by jurisdiction, when jurisdiction is a key concern, rather than attempt to answer a question for all countries in one page. (Consider if we didn't: should a U.S. answer to a question be voted to the top, over the Canadian, U.K., or Indian answer to the same question? Which gets "accepted"? etc.)

When a question touches on law, regulation, taxation, state pension plans, etc. then a jurisdiction should be specified. Notwithstanding, there are classes of questions which do not require a country tag (perhaps, e.g. household budgeting, debt reduction, etc.)

We have been using country tags here since day one. When I founded the site, I desired to promote international participation. As a Canadian, I felt that country tags would help avoid both (1) ambiguity, and (2) a "U.S.-by-default" first impression that visitors might have otherwise had if it wasn't clear the site welcomes questions from anywhere. An earlier incarnation of the site even had little flag icons on the major country tags, and you could often tell from a glance at the home page that users came from all over.

The country tags also let users who are interested in or expert on a particular country highlight questions of interest, and filter out those they aren't knowledgeable about.

Finally, the tags are also great for search engines. I imagine that people outside of the United States would tend to include the name of their country when they're interested in searching for information about local laws, taxes, and regulations. That's what I do, lest I get IRS results on capital gains taxes instead of those from the CRA.

  • I get it, I get it! :) Thanks for the thoughtful answer. I'm more active on Stack Overflow personally and often the best answers combine many different individual answers to cover all of the possibilities. That's what I was imagining with respect to my original question and it's what I was curious about with respect to this meta question. – Kenny Evitt Dec 21 '16 at 0:34

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