Apart from the American vs 'Real' English in tags discussion.

It seems that for a lot of people on bicycles.SE English may not be their first language. Especially given how popular commuting by bike is in Europe vs N. America.
And technical terms may not directly translate.

Can we bear this in mind when reading questions and not just jump on a question, or questioner, that doesn't immediately make sense.

If you have >1000 points you can edit questions to fix the language, or post a comment suggesting a fix.

If you do correct a term (eg protective plates for fenders/mudguards) post a link to the terminolgy question. You can link to a particular answer by clicking the little 'link' text on each question and copy the generated link URL.

  • 3
    You can actually suggest an edit at any rep level now. And BTW, this issue is prevalent all across SE, from what I've seen. Your thoughts here mesh well with a similar question on meta.SO: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/16276 Feb 11, 2011 at 20:01
  • That's the problem. On the more technical software SE sites, poor english (often) = poor question = poor education = assumption that some 3rd world offshoring outfit is trying to get their work done. That's not necessarily the same here
    – mgb
    Feb 11, 2011 at 22:14
  • ps. how do you flag a question as needing edit if you have <1000 points? Can somebody edit the question to show how (now that's meta^2)
    – mgb
    Feb 11, 2011 at 22:26
  • 2
    why flag? just click edit. It's available to any question older than 12 hours for anonymous and low rep users. Feb 12, 2011 at 15:54

2 Answers 2


The best thing we can do for such questions is to gently edit them into a more useful form, whether this is high-rep users editing the question directly, or lower-rep users initiating peer-reviewed edits. Where applicable, you can explain what you've done if you would find it helpful. Filling out the edit summary field would help towards that end, particularly if the reason you edited the text might not be obvious.

Also, Stack Exchange has a great resource for those who want to understand English better: the English Language and Usage site has many questions on word usage and grammar.


As documented here


  • Anonymous, unregistered, and 1 reputation users may now submit suggested edits to most content on our sites.*
  • Experienced users with 2,000 reputation or more can review these edits and approve or reject them.
  • When registered users’ edits are accepted, they earn +2 rep, up to a maximum of +1000.

* note that as it says in the blog post "we do currently limit anonymous edits to questions and answers older than 12 hours (and with some different caveats, wiki pages too)."

Almost everything is editable by anonymous and low-rep users now, so I suggest simply editing these questions if they can be salvaged.

Do not bother editing questions of such low value that they can't be saved, though. There has to be a kernel of utility there, somewhere.

  • I wondered if it appeared differently for low rep users
    – mgb
    Feb 13, 2011 at 5:49

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