I always feel weird posting yes or no questions because in short someone ultimately answers the question with a simple 2 or 3 letter word and then I'm choosing a correct answer that didn't really give me any insight other than a confirmation that I did something right... Is there a way that I can just not choose a correct answer and let the question serve as an example for someone else down the road that may be stuck? Also are yes/no questions generally frowned down upon?

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@5pm: That sounds like an answer :-) –  robjohn Feb 21 '13 at 18:11
    
Yes I suppose you're right, I guess looking back, I have just had a few people that answer with a plain yes or no and then that's the only answer I get. But yes you are right, hearing the reasoning is helpful. –  TheHopefulActuary Feb 21 '13 at 18:34
    
@robjohn OK, moved to another pocket. –  user53153 Feb 21 '13 at 18:42
    
possible duplicate of meta.math.stackexchange.com/questions/6883/… –  Eric Naslund Feb 21 '13 at 19:24
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I just noticed you have 1,337 reputation at the moment, Kyle. –  Joe Z. Feb 22 '13 at 20:31
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Is this a yes/no question? –  copper.hat Feb 23 '13 at 16:54
    
Simply answering 'Yes' or 'No' wont work. An answer must comprise at least 25 characters. –  azimut Mar 6 '13 at 10:06
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3 Answers

up vote 13 down vote accepted

Related: Asking questions with very short answers. The consensus there was that such questions are fine.

That said, don't you also want to know why the answer is yes or no? Also, you may be interested in a more general statement than a simple yes/no for a particular example. For instance, along with the yes/no question

is $10\min(x,y)=\min(10x,10y)$?

you could ask

More generally, for which numbers $c$ is it true that $c\min(x,y)=\min(cx,cy)$?

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No.${}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}{}$

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Does this answer "Is there a certain policy with yes/no questions?", or "Is there a way that I can just not choose a correct answer and let the question serve as an example for someone else down the road that may be stuck?", or "are yes/no questions generally frowned down upon?" // Or all of the above? –  user53153 Feb 21 '13 at 22:43
    
@5pm: you're going to take all the mystery out of life. :-) –  robjohn Feb 21 '13 at 23:55
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@5pm yes...$\phantom{no}$ –  draks ... Feb 22 '13 at 7:55
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Yes. $\phantom{You can kill me/downvote me to oblivion/suspend me for this comment now.}$

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A more real answer: I'm not too well-versed on general policy here, but by my intuition I'd say you can ask the question if it's possible for people to elaborate on the answer past just a simple yes/no. And people answering the question should elaborate if they can do so. –  Joe Z. Feb 22 '13 at 20:30
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