Recently i asked the following question Davening Maariv at Shekiya / or after Plag HaMincha - repeating Kriyas Shema and one of the users said my title was misleading. How close in scope is the title supposed to be to the question? Why bother with a title at all if the title is supposed to match the question to the "T"?
In my opinion the title of a question should be like the title of any non-fiction book, manual, or essay: enough to make you understand what the body of the question is about without duplicating it. E.g.:
- The Not So Short Introduction to LATEX2ε
- Podcasting for Dummies
- A Modest Proposal for Preventing the Children of Poor People in Ireland From Being a Burden on Their Parents or Country, and for Making Them Beneficial to the Publick (though this is too long)
(OTOH, "On Liberty" is IMO too vague as a question title here.)
Titles perform three important functions that I can think of:
Allow someone scanning a list of questions to determine which they might be interested in reading more of.
Provide for the question the benefit of BLUF (Bottom Line Up Front), helping the reader have the main point in mind when reading the entire question.
Make it more likely that someone googling for the topic at hand will find this question. The title is taken into account by Google's algorithms much more than the body, so it's helpful to put keywords that characterize the question into the title.
I endorse points 1, 2, and 3 of this advice on the mothership meta: Make the topic stand out, keep it short, and lead with the most important words (though I agree with Jeff that it's silly to lead with "Topic:").
If a question is at all complex, I recommend writing the question body first, then looking it over to pull out the main point to put in the title.
IMO, your title wasn't that bad in this case, and I wouldn't call it "misleading," though I agree with the commenter that if the real point of your question is about Shema, it would probably make sense to put it in the title. If I were writing the title, I'd probably make it something like "Repeating Kriyas Shema after early Maariv."