See Should we discourage pet breed / species identification questions? for the genesis of this.
Given that this recently popped up with What is this Reptile/Lizard? and we had a similar, though not the same, question on How can I identify the gender of my giant gourami? it got me to thinking about this. Why? In the closing down of the first, there was a comment with a link to the meta question. Meta is how we discuss our community, but I think it's unreasonable to ask newcomers to wade through the meta to figure it out, especially if they're new to the Stack Exchange model in general, but asking them to read our help is not (which is why I'm posting this).
So, when I started assessing the two questions, the thing that stood out in each case was:
The first question has almost no value to another visitor to the site. We have a picture of a reptile and, unless someone with a reptile that looks the same just happens to have the same problem, this question with its answer will never help another person.
The second question has value to other people because it asks how to solve the problem of identification. Other people, who have giant gouramis, would then be able to benefit from the question and answer.
The key is that we want to get questions that provide a greater audience with the tools that they can use to better understand and help their pets. It seems to me then that the first could have been more useful had the asker said, "how can I identify what type of monitor a monitor lizard is" as that would help many who might also be trying to figure that out with their pet.
I think the help topic, which doesn't really reflect this one way or another, may need to be updated regardless. Ideally this would be in the "off topic" (which does say "how" is encouraged, but in the subjective context), but since moderators can't edit that one, it would probably need to be something in the on topic section. So... thoughts? Should we update this information? If we do, thoughts on how to phrase it? I'm thinking we really want to avoid a list.