Vote to close or reopen questions
What is closing?
Closing is a democratic voting process where the community defines which questions are poorly defined or otherwise inappropriate for a site. Closing inappropriate questions is important: you want the questions that define your site to represent the expertise and professionalism of its intended audience.
When should I close a question?
When you see a question that violates the Stack Exchange Content Policy or duplicates another proposed question, or is off topic, non-constructive, poorly defined, or entirely unique to the asker, you should vote to close it.
How do I cast a close vote on a question?
The current number of close votes will be shown under the question, in parentheses like so:
If there are no close votes, it will simply say:
To cast a close vote — or just to view the current count of close votes and reasons — click the 'close' link under the question description. A list of close reasons, with descriptions and current counts, will appear.
If you wish to cast a vote at this point, use the radio buttons to specify a reason for closing the question, then click the [vote to close] button.
- It takes 5 close votes to reach the closing threshold
- You may cast up to 12 close votes per day.
- Close votes age away harmlessly after 4 days if the 5-vote threshold is not reached.
What happens when a question is closed?
Once a question has been closed, it no longer counts towards the commitment criteria, and the words
[closed] are appended to the title. At this point, it is no longer considered to define the site. However, it will still appear in the list of proposed questions, and closed questions can be reopened through a similar voting process:
The current number of reopen votes will be shown under the question, in parentheses like so:
If there are no reopen votes, it will simply say:
If five users vote to reopen, the closed status will be removed, and the question will again contribute toward the site's definition and appear in the list like any other.
Questions can go through multiple close and reopen cycles, but each individual user may only vote once in the cycle.
I cast my vote ages ago, but the question is still [closed|open]!
Perhaps the inappropriateness of the question isn't as obvious to others? Start by leaving a comment that describes the problem. Be constructive; perhaps the author can edit it to resolve the problems. If not, others who agree with your rationale may also vote to close or reopen.
If no discussion is forthcoming, you can flag problematic questions for moderator attention. If a moderator agrees with your assessment, they can close or reopen a question instantly.