Oops, sorry about that
So I guess it really depends on why you are in the forum as to the expected ettiquette. It also depends on the type of question.
My personal preference is to:
(1) Read the OP's statement/question and try to decipher what they are really after.
(2) Spend a limited amount of time clarifying OP's premise and assumptions.
(3) Give my best thoughts/opinion.
If I find the thread becoming just another semantic argument with no real substance I move on. If after a few clarifying questions the OP is still going back and forth on what the meaning of the word is, is or if the OP is not able to commit to their assumptions then I move on.
As for other posters that attempt to sidetrack I will try to ask clarifying questions from them as well so that we can agree on a set of assumptions. If once again this becomes laborius with no commitment on definition then I give my thoughts and move on.
Have I ever been the bad person that sidetracks a thread...well unfortunately yes I have. For anyone who's thread I have ever hijacked I officially apologize. Oh, thats right, see above post.