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Recently, in quite a few Adventurers League questions, we are getting comments asking the poster to spell out common AL terms, such as HC, T2 and adventure names like ToA. Most recent example here - Can a PC that played only part of ToA be resurrected in a later adventure?, but not the only situation.

Should we be asking the posters to spell them out? Should we (as the poster) be spelling out these terms? Finallly, as someone who knows what these terms mean, should we edit them?

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Ask only if you are familiar with the context of the question

Stack Exchange is a site "for experts". While our definition of experts is a little broader than usual, it doesn't change that fact and terms are part of that expertise. For me, this is a similar issue to the one found here: Should I ask a poster to quote the rules he or she is confused about? - the question is supposed to be read by people that are familiar with the context of that question, i.e., a question about Pathfinder is supposed to be read(able) by people familiar with Pathfinder's rules, and a question about AL should usually be read(able) by people familiar with AL, including their terms. Another way of seeing this is: We don't ask people to spell out RPG, D&D and other common terms.

That doesn't mean we should be a closed group that speaks an underground language that nobody else understands, but if someone is confused with usual RPG terminology, we do have the tag, which is exactly for "I don't know what this means, can I haz explanation?"

On the other hand, if you are familiar with the context and it is still unclear on what that term means, then you should ask for clarification.

Edit only if you are really familiar with the context

As SSD mentioned in his comment1, some terms have more meaning as the acronym than as the spelled out version. Edits for clarification should only be made if you are completely sure it is not going to change the meaning of the question in a significant way. Also, only edit if the term isn't, somehow, part of the problem which leads to the question - obvious examples are the terminology questions asking what the term means.


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“HC” means “hardcover” — ironically it is less meaningful spelled out, because only in jargon-y “HC” form does it carry any meaning relevant to AL

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  • \$\begingroup\$ From your comments on the question that inspired this Q&A, it seems that you disagree with the editing that was done on the question. Am I interpreting this correctly? I ask because going by this answer I would interpret that you would be fine with the edits that were made. \$\endgroup\$ – Rubiksmoose Aug 20 '18 at 20:48
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Rubiksmoose Which comment? Either way, I'm fine with SSD's edit. I think the ToA being spelled out doesn't change the meaning, although I personally wouldn't edit (there is already the ToA tag for searchability, so his argument on that one didn't convince me haha). I wouldn't be fine if HC or T2 were edited out, though. \$\endgroup\$ – HellSaint Aug 20 '18 at 20:52
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    \$\begingroup\$ Specifically the comment you left with a link to this meta. And your response does answer my question, so thanks. I just want to emphasize that this is also a Q&A site meant to be used by people who may not be familiar with every term. So it isn't just about searchability. \$\endgroup\$ – Rubiksmoose Aug 20 '18 at 20:57
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    \$\begingroup\$ +1. If y0u don't know what ToA means you probably shouldn't be answering a question on it. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Aug 20 '18 at 23:59

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