While the usefulness of a Question sticky thread is perfectly evident, I think it has outlived its purpose. In its place, I propose stickies in the format of QTDDTOT (Questions that don't deserve their own thread). I highly believe this will serve us better than the ongoing Question stickies.
Let me compare and contrast so you can see why I am proposing this change:
Question thread pros:
1. All potential threads created solely to ask a question are instead posted as comments in a single Question thread.
2. Because of 1; the catalog should consist solely of threads with consistent topics. Rather, the OP had the topic in mind and provided substance to ensure it meets quality thread guidelines.
3. Because of 2; The OP may be assumed to be an expert or at least knowledgeable of the subject.
Sounds like all is well, right? I'm not so sure.
Question thread cons:
1. Question threads function like mini-/fringe/ generals. As anyone can plainly see, Question threads are almost the entire daily activity of the board. Question threads carry ongoing topics that may or may not have actually answered a question. While a QTDDTOT will not absolutely solve this problem, it mitigates it by the fact that the user chose to value his question as insignificant - not warranting a thread. Popular topics that do not have their threads up may not ever appear because knowledgeable users do not feel incentivized to share their knowledge until an user comes asking, which will be contained to generals that clog up quite quickly with other questions and ongoing discussions.
2. Because of Pro 1; open-ended threads are nearly non-existent or difficult to create. Like solving a language puzzle, the OP must carefully ensure his thread is not a question. Typical threads on the catalog are clearly defined because of this unintended restriction. Because the OP is hoping to rope in people who are interested in the topic, he must essentially hope that lurkers in mini-/fringe/ generals notice his question amidst ongoing discussions. The ongoing discussions of each question chain grab users' attention as we're all too conditioned to recognize a noteworthy post by the amount of replies linked to it.
3. Question threads were and still are necessary on 8/fringe/ because of the loose posting guidelines. Because 8/fringe/ does not contain various posting habits to separate boards, their catalog enjoys a supplementary excess of shitposting, LARPing, and assorted
fun low quality threads. Because fringechan runs things differently and has more assets to better moderate and contain topics, Question threads are not essential and actually function as a hindrance. What this means is that by unloading (some of) the containment that is within Question threads and permitting users to use their best judgement by allowing them to create a thread with a question as its basis, our /fringe/ should grow its catalog. A larger catalog instills trust in potential users who see activity. Confidence in the health of the community spawns more interest. More threads, more activity, more users, more discussion, etc. We already have a platform and posting guidelines to safeguard this, the only problem is that we contain it to the Question sticky.
While I am very confident that this change should work, I will admit it is a bet at its base level. The gambit here is that users will not abuse or pollute the catalog with low-quality threads to such a high degree that it becomes an unconscious norm. Even if it does work, low-quality question threads will still appear and must be handled accordingly. I suggest that in order to test these waters the admins designate a suitable trial period that will let them and users see the effects of it themselves. If this works, QTDDTOT will contain relatively insignificant questions and posts such as reference questions and so on. Meanwhile the catalog should grow by loosening the restrictions of OP formats. Even if it doesn't, we already gave it a shot and can revert back.