Fantasy sports questions of any sort, unless they directly impact real sports (and not the other way around), have been considered off topic here since the beginning. The reasons given for this are that they do not last: they tend to be questions of the moment, such as "Who should I start this week".

At the same time, the traffic on this site has dropped, and the community is much smaller now than it once was - and is quite different, also. I've noticed that we do, however, get a lot of traffic - and a lot of questions - on Sundays, tied to NFL games. And some of these questions - like this one - are not of the short-term variety, but are functionally similar to questions considered on topic on other sites.

Do we want to consider permitting some fantasy questions, given that it is likely some of this traffic is indeed fantasy sports players? This would not necessarily have to be all fantasy questions; I'll post a few answers below that include each option, and explain the pros for that option.

  • Please feel free to either add new answers (if you have a different specific result in mind), or to edit any of the answers in order to add additional reasoning as appropriate. – Joe Mod Dec 17 '20 at 15:24
  • Allowing fantasy while disallowing e-sports seems unfair. They're both no "real" sport topics and allowing one while keeping the other out is a no for me. – dly Dec 22 '20 at 14:10
  • Fantasy sports involve virtually the same information as sports we accept as standard; several recent questions and many older favoured questions could just as easily be asked from the fantasy perspective. E-sports have never seemed remotely on-topic as they deal primarily with digital, not physical, activity. – Nij Mod Jan 12 at 8:19
  • Where do we draw the line? Fantasy itself is only digital as well. And their not-so-virtual events/games/competitions can be asked about without that tag. If it doesn't fit in it's not sports. – dly Jan 12 at 12:42

No, we should continue to consider Fantasy questions off-topic on this site. The community would prefer to consider only questions that are directly applicable to actual sports; fantasy sports questions would potentially take away from that focus.

  • Please feel free to edit this answer with additional reasons for not considering Fantasy questions. Thanks! – Joe Mod Dec 17 '20 at 15:24
  • I would add that if we take this course of action, we should also delete the fantasy tag along with the three questions that still use it, as we did when autograph ID questions were made off-topic. – F1Krazy Dec 17 '20 at 16:33
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    @F1Krazy I would agree with removing two of the three, and leaving the third (which is explicitly on topic). Removing the tag might be a consideration as well, maybe we should have two different answers (No, but keep the tag, and No, but remove the tag) - will you add the other? (This can be the "keep the tag", which is the decision we came to the last time we thought about this, I believe.) – Joe Mod Dec 17 '20 at 16:39

Yes, we should allow fantasy questions, as long as they are about how to play fantasy, the rules of fantasy sports, types of fantasy, or high level strategies. Tactics, meaning which player to start, or other week-to-week (or day-to-day) questions, will remain off-topic.

Questions about fantasy that are at this level do have long-term benefit, and many fantasy players are also people who are generally interested in sports. If we are able to attract and retain fantasy players, it may improve the quality of the site and expand the community, allowing us to provide more and better answers, as well as attracting additional traffic.

It is a reality that fantasy sports has become increasingly the way in which people interact with sport, with over 50 million Americans playing Fantasy (American) Football each year, while popularity is growing in Europe - for example, 6 million players in the UK. Fantasy sports combines sports experts with sports novices - meaning it's the perfect combination for growing our site, as it could attract novices to ask questions and experts to answer them.

Keeping away the day-to-day tactics questions will keep the question quality higher, while encouraging people to use our chat room for these kinds of questions and discussions. It would also reduce the amount of fantasy questions to hopefully a reasonably low level, so they do not overwhelm our general sports questions.

  • Any thoughts on which way would you put a question like "what is traditionally the largest dropoff year for receivers in terms of fantasy production" or something like that? Types of questions that may have some long-term benefit, but don't fit in any of your other categories? Or what if it was a narrower question like "do running backs in Matthew Stafford offenses tend to perform above or below what they should in fantasy return?" – JeopardyTempest Feb 5 at 15:53
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    The first question would be totally fine, if we considered fantasy questions on topic. Honestly you could pretty easily make it on topic even without fantasy. The second question ... I think if this were a site with a large population of active users, it would be totally fine. Even if the direct answer doesn't have long term benefit, odds are other cases will be similar. But I'm not sure it's a good idea to have that narrow of questions right now given the reality of the site. But... not sure. – Joe Mod Feb 5 at 15:56

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