I have a lot of HNQ's for some reason I don't quite understand (they're never the ones I think are really interesting) but this one is a real head scratcher.

One day I was bored and letting YouTube suggest things to watch and I came across the clip in Meaning of "Never get involved in a land war in Asia" in The Princess Bride? I simply thought the line was peculiar and out of place so I asked here.

In two years it got 36,000 views.

Why might that be?

  • Probably made the Hot Network Questions sidebar.
    – Paulie_D
    Commented Sep 23, 2021 at 15:00
  • @Paulie_D HNQ is an amplifier, but not the underlying cause.
    – uhoh
    Commented Sep 23, 2021 at 15:14
  • Obviously people found it interesting not sure what else you are looking for. WHY they found it interesting is not something we can answer.
    – Paulie_D
    Commented Sep 23, 2021 at 15:33
  • @Paulie_D who's "we"?
    – uhoh
    Commented Sep 23, 2021 at 22:13
  • "we" means the people you are asking here.
    – iandotkelly Mod
    Commented Sep 24, 2021 at 4:29
  • @iandotkelly the "us vs you" paradigm in Stack Exchange is an unhealthy one in my opinion; nobody should ever speak for everybody. But my point there was that since two people quickly posted answers the idea that "nobody here can answer" might not be so clear (and of course nobody can ever know what anybody else is thinking anywhere, so that goes without saying)
    – uhoh
    Commented Sep 24, 2021 at 5:24

2 Answers 2


The conjecture I'd propose is that The Princess Bride is a very popular movie - it's a cult classic. I'm certain that many people watch it and a subset of them are curious enough about that phrase to go to Google and search for it.

When I search Google in an incognito Chrome window for the phrase "what does never get involved in a land war in Asia mean?" your answer is the #1 result. This means, there's a decent likelihood that other people, even people who don't use Stack Exchange, will often be referred to your question when trying to understand that specific quote.

Screenshot of Google Search results in incognito mode, showing the subject question as the first result.


Not only HNQ, but the search engine and other websites that may have a link to the post also play the role in getting views. I have a question that had around 5k views when it got out of HNQ, but now it has over 112k views. If I put the term "Leta Lestrange fear", this question comes up on the first page.

In your case, if I search the phrase "never get involved in a land war in Asia", your question comes up on the first page, 1st rank for me, as well.

You can find many questions here blessed with hits from search engines.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .