I've recently asked a few questions which deliberately push the boundaries of what is acceptable on the site because I was hoping to get a few good examples of what might be useful off-topic questions. My questions were:
- What are your favourite gourmet Pizza toppings?
- Cooking for the masses
- What cook books do you keep coming back to
The interesting thing is that these questions will have a list of answers, which may be useful to the community without having a definitive answer.
Whilst I don't necessarily want to see a proliferation of these types of question on the site I do think there is some value in them. The reason is that the SE engine is optimized for Q&A which has the side effect of being well suited to questions that can have a list of answers. Now a list in itself isn't overly useful, but the SE engine allows for sorted and ranked lists which is infinitely more useful. The problem with lists is that over-zealous community members will close them with the logic that they're too subjective with no possible answer.
I think these types of questions are also distinct from discussion type questions as they're not open to debate, nor do they encourage back and forth dialogue between users.
So after all that, my question is should questions that have a list of answers be allowed when they still provide value to the community despite not having a distinct answer?