This question was already asked concerning this but my question is inherently different. What can be asked here?Please read what follows.

It seems to me that the site has lost its purpose or that I have totally misunderstood the FAQ, as I am fairly new to the site I feel forced to ask the question here.

According to some moderators some specific science questions can't be asked here even if the questions make claims of which the OP is skeptical of. Example: Question

But some other questions are indeed allowed and those questions need at least some basic knowledge of the science in question. Example: Medicine || Chemistry/Physics || Biology || Chemistry And there are many more examples.

So really now, what questions are deemed "appropriate" for the site and which ones are not?

Mainly so I can ask questions that won't be closed.

Edit: I made some research in meta and found this: Validity There the moderator says I quote:

Skeptics.SE has a very broad scope of potential areas it covers; 
the way we limit our scope is to only look at areas where there 
are claims being made that seem dubious.

For example, if you just have a question about finance, we aren't interested. 
Go ask on money.stackexchange.com or quant.stackexchange.com, or somewhere else 
on the Internet. But if you have a question where someone says something that 
sounds dubious about finance, we jump into action to try to find the truth.

That doesn't mean of course that skeptics are experts in finance right? Now that I read that it becomes even more confusing....

1 Answer 1


As we are still in beta, we are trying to understand our scope in exact detail. Inconsistencies are to be expected.

The general principle is that questions and answers should be based on scientific skepticism, or in other words, rely on strong, possibly peer-reviewed experimental facts and evidence.

Ultimately questions should be answerable based on evidence and not speculation. In practice the specific question you mention was receiving only speculative answers.

In other words, the question is somehow not working, that's why I suggest that it stays closed until it's fixed.

That said, I simply expressed my opinion in the comments--I did not change or close the question--and I welcome discussion on how to improve it.

Note: The question has been answered with abundant references now, so my point is moot. I am leaving the answer because it made sense at the time this question was asked.

  • A claim made by a random person in youtube? You have to see the video first before making such a claim. It is a recognized mainly news outlet called Al-Jazeera based in Bahrain. The claim is very specific and not ambiguous. I really don't understand. What exactly does "not contemptuous" mean? as contemptuous means disdain.
    – Jose Luis
    Commented Oct 25, 2011 at 12:54
  • And the fact that it so far received only speculative answers does not mean that it is not answerable based on evidence.
    – Jose Luis
    Commented Oct 25, 2011 at 12:57
  • You are right about the first point. I disagree on the second. The fact that it's not receiving good answers is in fact an interesting point--look, we are only interested in improving the quality of the site. Please try to help us (for example by being a little less confrontational).
    – Sklivvz
    Commented Oct 25, 2011 at 13:01
  • I am interested on improving the site as well. Or else I wouldn't make the effort of coming to meta only to understand what questions are considered valid and which are not. And if the first point is valid then edit your answer. (Just a suggestion). If the question is closed then it will be lost and will not receive the evidence based answer that it possibly deserves. I'm sorry if I am confrontational it is not done in purpose.
    – Jose Luis
    Commented Oct 25, 2011 at 13:06
  • @Joze I did edit the question contextually to my comment, do you think other parts need addressing?
    – Sklivvz
    Commented Oct 25, 2011 at 13:20
  • Now its good! Thank you! :-)
    – Jose Luis
    Commented Oct 25, 2011 at 13:28
  • “As we are still in beta” – interesting point: why exactly is that? Skeptics has been in Beta for ages and has been overtaken by a lot of different SE sites. I realise that different sites take different times to reach maturity but by now I think skeptics.sx is probably rivalling Snopes (OK, I just checked the traffic rates and Snopes is still way ahead, but still …). Commented Oct 30, 2011 at 12:33

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