Ever since the private beta, we seem to be a bit wary of bad questions, and quick on the "close" trigger. We've had several threads discussing what questions are good and bad, such as simple Googleable questions or questions soliciting reviews. Now, these questions may not be the best, as we're probably not going to be contributing much good content in response to them; however, we still can help people answer their questions, by linking them to resources which already exist.

Should we be quick to close questions which are bad, but not exactly off topic, argumentative, or the like? For example, this question soliciting reviews; we can't exactly provide an answer for it directly, but linking the user to several existing reviews may be helpful if they didn't know where to look beforehand. Is this something that should be closed, as there is not enough information to provide useful answers, or is it OK to leave questions open if just pointing the user to better places to look is a sufficient answer?

2 Answers 2


Yes, closing questions (and the discussion around it) helps define what this site is about. By closing bad questions we nip in the bud the drift from Q&A to vague discussions.


I think there is a world of difference between:


The post in question fails to satisfy your own top ranked answer for how to ask review questions here. The problem with the Stronghold question is that it is subjective, not that it is easily googleable.

  • I agree; it's subjective, and I said that it probably isn't a good use of the site in my answer about review questions. I'm wondering if it needs to be closed. Obviously off-topic questions, unanswerable questions that keep popping up to the front page, argumentative questions that cause a lot of debate with no good way to objectively decide who's right, those should be closed. I'm concerned that we're getting a little too eager to close for questions which, while not great, can still be answered adequately; but I ask since I'm not certain and want to know what others think. Commented Nov 3, 2010 at 19:29
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    @Brian - it takes 5 votes to close so it isn't like only one person can close. (Until mods show up anyways) Closed questions can always be reopened as well if 5 votes can be found. I think people should be encouraged to interact with the site. That means that shaky questions should be encouraged, and also close votes should be encouraged. Over time, the mores of the group will arise. Trying to enforce any version of "correct" behavior beyond the most simple (don't spam and the like) before that will only drive folks mad IMHO.
    – Pat Ludwig Mod
    Commented Nov 3, 2010 at 19:36

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