Inspired by this question: What are some of the best spots in New York City to take really good pictures?

Are posts that ask for photo location tips on or off topic?

  • Came here about that exact same post. I'm conflicted about what the answer should be for this site.
    – user167
    Jul 17, 2010 at 5:48

5 Answers 5


I'd vote for off topic. Only subjective answers can be given and the list itself is infinite. In theory everybody would want to get unique picture, not something that has been done million times before. But that's just theory.

  • 1
    I think the "subjective" and "infinite answers" problems are a lot more compelling than off-topic.
    – mattdm
    Jun 29, 2011 at 21:40
  • To counter this though, subjective answers aren't necessarily a problem as long as they are well supported. If someone simply gives a list of answers, it should probably be deleted as not an answer, but if someone can list what features of an area are noteworthy, why, and give support for it (historical significance, artistic significance, good weather, not crowded, etc) then it can be a good answer.
    – AJ Henderson Mod
    Aug 29, 2017 at 0:11

Well, I think there is a fine line here. This particular question could be taken advantage of and everyone will start asking the same thing for every city on the planet, which I am not sure is appropriate. However, someone new to a city (NYC in this case) who is not interested in postcard shots could get valuable information from a community sourced dialog, which is the purpose of the site, right? To get the community to answer and participate in questions. If things get out of control, the moderators can close the question or the community can down vote the question too. If the spirit of the site is to involve the community, I say let it ride and let the community decide on a case by case basis. It works out quite well on the other stack* sites.


If the question is detailed enough or if the possible answers can be detailed enough (and objective) it's on topic. But the question that is referred to is just too general and the answers that could be given would be too wide spread. If the question contained a type or style of photography I would say it would be on topic even if that would result in a long list of possibilities.


I would say that it's rather too localised than off-topic.

  • New York city has a population of over 8 million, and almost 50 million tourists a year. That's significantly more than the audience for most of the questions on this site.
    – mattdm
    Jun 29, 2011 at 21:38
  • @mattdm: The world has a population of nearly 7 billion people, most of which will never visit New York. That makes the 50 million tourists less than a percent, which is clearly too localised. ;)
    – Guffa
    Jun 29, 2011 at 22:14
  • 1
    There was a question closed because Europe was too localized :)
    – Imre
    Jun 30, 2011 at 15:11

I think these questions are fine. In addition to the one on New York linked above, we've had one on Paris also shot down, and there's one on Louisville, Kentucky currently in the midst of rejection.

The designation "too localized" is tempting, because hey, these are locations, but I don't think that's right. These are, after all, major cities (even Louisville is one of the top 20 in the US). There's likely more photographers living in or potentially visiting one of these locations than there are, y'know, photographers shooting with Pentax gear in the whole world.

There's a worthwhile answer by Joel Spolsky over on meta.stackoverflow which I highly recommend. What questions should be closed with reason "too localized"?

Now, some of these questions might have issues with subjectivity, and maybe they're too open-ended to fit the site perfectly. But a lot of them, I think we really can handle.

  • +1 @mattdm agreed
    – rfusca
    Jun 30, 2011 at 4:59
  • 1
    And frankly, we got an answer on Louisville, KY. If we can get an answer there, many other places should be fair game.
    – rfusca
    Jul 3, 2011 at 1:35

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