This is a followup to my meta post A newbie perspective after 60 days and 90 Q&As.

[...] Mi Yodeya is clearly different from other sites on the Internet (e.g., discussion forums, even other StackExchange forums). There is a FAQ of course but maybe we need a beginner’s guide to MY that we point people to and that formally articulates “How is this site different from other Judaism sites”?

There are many points I wish would have been explained to me earlier and which would in my view make the site even more friendly to beginners, would reduce some of the friction in the comments.

I am imagining an official meta post to which one can point a beginner when he starts to deviate from the norm in order to help him understand the mental model underpinning Mi Yodeya. I have seen many of these points discussed on meta but not really in a user-friendly single place to refer people early on


1 Answer 1


Welcome to Mi Yodeya! Beyond the introduction tour, you might find the additional information useful to understand the underlying principles of Mi Yodeya

  1. MY offers tons of great information, but does not offer personalized, professional advice, and does not take the place of seeking such advice from your rabbi.
  2. MY is neither a social network, a discussion forum or a place where personal opinions matter -- instead it is a site for serious questions and sourced answers focused on Jewish life and learning. (Mi Yodeya Chat can be used for a more flexible social discussion format.)
  3. Not all topics are in-scope for MY - do not be upset if your question gets closed. Good questions are thoughtful, give background as to why you ask, are not too open-ended and provide sources when relevant.
  4. MY places a heavy emphasis on sources in answers. (No one knows who's really answering; sources are the only authoritative references accepted.)
  5. Good MY questions will either provide sources (showing the questioner has put some time and effort into the question and grounding the answerers in the same reality) or explain the reason and motivation for asking the question.
  6. MY uses comments to sharpen questions/answers and not for discussion - extended discussions might well be deleted. When you have something to add that is not a full answer, e.g., a source, lead, hint, tip or some tangentially related point - post it as a comment, not an answer. However, material important to your post, such as sources or explanations, should be edited in and not left as a comment. (When you've edited in response to a comment requesting clarification, feel free to flag that comment as obsolete.)
  7. It is a good idea (but not mandatory) to accept the best answer 2-3 days after asking a question. Doing this too early might discourage others from offering answers, possibly better ones.
  8. MY moderators are primarily there to enforce site policy by closing and/or removing material, as needed; they too will sometimes use comments to challenge posters to refine their thoughts and thus improve the overall quality of content. If you see a post or comment that is inappropriate or needs to be removed, flag it!
  9. MY reflects perspectives of traditional Judaism: it welcomes different perspectives but they need to be anchored in Jewish tradition.
  10. MY is an English-language site: Hebrew is welcome in addition, but is best accompanied by a translation.
  11. Finally, if you have questions about site policy or functionality you can ask on the companion site Mi Yodeya Meta.

No one is getting paid for being here, so we're all just here to learn together, and we're looking forward to learning with you!

  • 4
    You may wish to add that the first answer isn't always the best answer and askers should stick around for (further) answers whether or not they get an immediate one.
    – msh210 Mod
    Commented May 13, 2016 at 17:18
  • discussion about this post
    – msh210 Mod
    Commented Apr 12, 2017 at 22:54
  • @msh210 incorporated this as point 7 above - hope I got it right - if not feel free to edit and leave a comment
    – mbloch
    Commented Dec 27, 2017 at 10:33

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