Current Issue:

I was glancing through the help center's articles, and the article's structure on the What topics can I ask about here? page doesn't really make sense and confused me a bit.

The first two headers are:

What topics can I ask about here?


What kind of questions can I ask here?

Well that feels a little redundant. But the meat of the matter that confused me is under the first header, "What topics can I ask about here?":

What topics can I ask about here?

Please look around to see if your question has been asked before. It’s also OK to ask and answer your own question.

If your question is not specifically on-topic for MathOverflow, it may be on topic for another Stack Exchange site. If no site currently exists that will accept your question, you may commit to or propose a new site at Area 51, the place where new Stack Exchange communities are democratically created.

What kind of questions can I ask here?


The information included under "What Topics can I ask about here?" doesn't answer the question at all, it would be more like an answer to "What should I know before asking a question?", though even then, it wouldn't really be complete.

I'm thinking maybe "What topics can I ask about here?" Is supposed to appear as a title for the entire document, even though right now it's formatted like the header to the two little paragraphs that follow it.

There have already been requests to re-word this article for different reasons, and perhaps this segment of text got formatted differently by accident or moved from its place. On the Mathematics Stack Exchange, they have the same two paragraphs about looking around first and the warning about the question getting closed at the bottom of their help center's article about on-topic questions, which seems to make more logical sense. First answer what's on topic, then tell people to look for duplicates, and after they know what's on topic, warn them about off topic questions getting closed.

Proposed Solution:

Make the "What topics can I ask about here?" page header larger so that it doesn't look identical to the paragraph headers, and move the first two paragraphs to different parts of the article. The one about looking around first for an existing question should go at the end of the "What kind of questions can I ask here?" section, and the one about what to do if your question is off-topic for MathOverflow should be moved to the end of the section on "What kind of questions should I not ask here?" .



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