Suggestion - Some story ID questions get asked over and over again. Maybe we should have a sticky listing the most frequent ones.

The list would include:

  • The Gold at the Starbow's End/ aka Starburst by Pohl
  • The Last Question by Asimov
  • All Summer in a Day by Bradbury.

What other stories do you think should go on the list?

  • 5
    What does "have a sticky" mean?
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Feb 13, 2023 at 6:14
  • Basically every Asimov stories? (I was told there are that memorable)
    – Clockwork
    Feb 13, 2023 at 15:54
  • @Rand al'Thor, is that a serious question, or an ironic one? If you don't know, a sticky is a thing on message boards where a particular thread always appears at the top of the list of threads. Often used for FAQs and forum rules.
    – Pete
    Feb 13, 2023 at 17:36
  • 7
    SE isn't a message board. It was a serious question, as I had no idea what you meant, and even after getting your explanation, I don't understand how you propose adapting such an idea to the SE system.
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Feb 13, 2023 at 17:37
  • Oh, is SE incapable of having stickies? The software doesn't support it? I didn't know that. I suppose that clinches it. And how is this not a message board? I really don't understand that point.
    – Pete
    Feb 13, 2023 at 18:18
  • 2
    @Pete - We're a Q&A site, not a message board
    – Valorum
    Feb 13, 2023 at 23:23
  • Okay, that's your opinion. Mine is that "Q&A site" is a subset of "message board". All Q&A sites are message boards. But some message boards allow discussions other than Q&A format.
    – Pete
    Feb 13, 2023 at 23:45
  • "Message board" is synonymous to forum?
    – Clockwork
    Feb 14, 2023 at 7:35
  • Meta Stack Exchange has an additional "Frequently Asked" on the homepage's right sidebar, but currently, it is exclusive to Meta.SE.
    – Andrew T.
    Feb 15, 2023 at 9:15

2 Answers 2


No, we should not

The idea, I presume, is to have people look at the most commonly asked ID requests before asking their own question.

First off, Stack Exchange already gives a list of possibly related questions, although that may not be of much use here as it seems to be mostly tag based.

Most importantly, we should encourage people to search. But if searching doesn't yield an answer while a duplicate does exist, it means the current querent has a different view of the story. Having them ask it in their own way, thus creating a duplicate, gives a new entry point for future querents looking for the same story to find.


There's already a list of frequent questions that exists for the tag. It is automatically generated based off what questions get linked to the most.

It's not very easy to find, but I'd expect most people to be searching for the unique characteristics of the story they're looking for and not just lists of popular stories.

And really, as long as they're getting answers, there's no problem with having duplicates.

  • If there's no problem with duplicates, why are the always closed? Really, I don't know why they are. What's the reason?
    – Pete
    Feb 13, 2023 at 17:29
  • 3
    @Pete More reading here on why duplicates are useful. The system actually treats duplicate closure differently from other types of closure (e.g. a migration will be rejected if it's closed as a "bad" question on the target site, but will not be rejected if it's closed as a duplicate, which might still be a "good" question).
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Feb 13, 2023 at 17:39
  • 4
    @Pete Closing a duplicate is a sign for the OP (and anyone else who happens across the question) to go look at an awesome answer on another question. It shouldn't be seen as a negative.
    – Laurel
    Feb 13, 2023 at 17:52
  • 1
    @Pete In short, when different people come asking for a specific work, which all turn out to be the same, they tend to remember details differently. By marking questions as duplicate, we connect all the dots together, since they're all about the same story, without changing the original question to keep the intent as is.
    – Clockwork
    Feb 14, 2023 at 7:37

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