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I posted a question about transferring RUB to EUR account, which was closed as off-topic, and would like to understand why. The note telling me it was closed as off-topic says

Questions seeking product, service recommendations or other off-site resources are off-topic because they tend to become obsolete quickly. Instead, describe your situation and the specific problem you're trying to solve.

After explaining that transferwise doesn’t work for the currency pair, the initial draft did ask if there’s “a service” that would work, perhaps that’s why it was closed? I’ve now revised it to remove that phrasing, but if that is the reason it would feel extremely ungenerous - the initial draft already described the situation and the specific problem, the idea that it must be “a service” was never the key thing.

Or are questions about this kind of thing just inherently off-topic? I wouldn’t have thought so, as it’s a matter of how to effectively manage my (wife’s) personal finances. I don’t see anything under the “what topics can I ask about?” or “what should I avoid asking?” help sections that seems to cover it, and the only relevant previous meta discussion I found is five years old and has no answer.

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  • Apparently my question was reopened after my edit while I wrote this, so I guess that’s my answer… – Chris H May 28 at 19:57
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It's a bit of a tricky one overall. Asking for specific service recommendations is definitely off-topic, and we get enough of those that we tend to just close them on sight. It's covered by this item in the on-topic list:

Requests for specific service provider recommendations; e.g. asking where to get a loan, what broker to use, etc.

As rewritten your question doesn't obviously cross that line, but in practice it might still attract the same kind of "bad" answers - specific service providers that get out of date quickly, and explicit spam.

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  • Thanks for the quick response, I can understand that point. – Chris H May 28 at 20:01
  • And keep in mind, even after reopening, the question now has 2 close votes, so it's back in the queue for members to look at. I agree with GS, you are seeking a 'process' and we'll reopen again if we have to. – JTP - Apologise to Monica May 30 at 11:27
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    @JTP-ApologisetoMonica I wasn't too sure of how we should treat it after the edit, but felt it didn't merit immediate closure any more. I'd have to think harder about reopening it if there are 5 normal VTCs. – GS - Apologise to Monica May 30 at 11:38
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The basic question is still looking for service recommendation if the answer you are expecting is a listing of banks or systems to move the money between the two countries. It would be just as fragile as the close reason states.

Questions seeking product, service recommendations or other off-site resources are off-topic because they tend to become obsolete quickly. Instead, describe your situation and the specific problem you're trying to solve.

while you described the problem and situation, you still appear to be looking for a product to use.

To be on topic you should be asking how to redo your finances to either bring the funds to Germany, or to keep them in Russia. You should be asking if the method of splitting expenses could be done differently to minimize the number of transfers. You should be looking for a way to have your wife's income be directed to the German bank.

Note that at the time I wrote this answer the 2 answers to your original question have received exactly 1 up-vote. That up-vote was mine.

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  • I posted this meta question in a genuine attempt to understand why the question had been closed. I got a very quick (short but clear) answer from GS, explaining that even the rewritten (more abstract) version is still at least close to a service/product request, and responded in a comment that I can see the point. So I'm not really clear why you've come here several days later to repeat the point I already accepted and tell me that you upvoted an answer on my question. But it does feel a bit like you're yelling at me for some reason. – Chris H Jun 2 at 11:18
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    I answered because the question was re-opened, and there are three close votes, plus at least one person that wants to keep it open. My point is it is off topic, and the other answer said it is on-topic as edited. – mhoran_psprep Jun 2 at 11:23
  • I'm not quite sure that it's on-topic after the edit, but it wasn't so clearly off-topic that it merited immediate mod-closure. I've edited my phrasing to make that a bit clearer. – GS - Apologise to Monica Jun 13 at 21:41

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