The particular question in question:

What are some sites that offer decent deals on college textbooks?

The original question was titled What site offers the best deal on college textbooks? That is obviously considered off-topic. Rather that voting to close it, I suggested that it be changed to a CW with the title in the link above. My reasoning being that a list of sites selling used textbooks could be useful. Along the lines of "How can I save money on college textbooks?"

I am having second thoughts, as this practice could invite a slew of off-topic questions through this backdoor. Can we allow some of these types of questions based on the idea that saving money is an essential part of personal finance? Or, is this a slippery slope that should just be avoided?

Related: general advice on getting good prices

  • 1
    Technically, I'd argue that "Where can I get deals on X" is a very objective question.
    – JohnFx Mod
    Aug 23, 2010 at 18:21

2 Answers 2


My experience on Gaming is that allowing things like this leads to large numbers of "list" questions which have no good answer and add questionable value (see the game-rec tag). Many hours of trying to get them closed has still left us with 50ish open ones and more coming each day. I think we need to draw a line in the sand and start closing these questions, before it gets out of hand.

  • I think that "list" type questions are probably a good thing, at least early on the site. They have a lot of potential to promote the site through helping the search engine ranking with good keywords relevant to the topic of Personal Finance.
    – JohnFx Mod
    Aug 23, 2010 at 18:22

I just voted to close as off-topic. From the proposal "Where can I find the lowest prices on [electronics/furniture/etc.]?" has 31 off-topic votes.

I feel this question matches that pretty well.

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