If a question is to be down voted or to be closed, does it make sense to require moderators to (perhaps walked through a process checklist):

  • migrate the question to an appropriate group OR
  • ask clarifying questions OR
  • provide constructive & specific advice for shaping questions OR
  • modify the question so as to improve the quality / viability?

We all have our biases and it seems a little too easy to shutdown questions: I have seen questions (from others) that were interesting that should not have been shut down. I realize that some questions are so ill-posed & beyond salvage, at the same time there are others questions that are actually well-posed and closed.

I would like to see greater incentives for moderators to guide, if not modify questions to become useful to the community.

UPDATE: Example of a question that I believe is within scope.

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    The question you link to wasn’t asked on AskDifferent. Please use the Meta site for Information Security to discuss it.
    – nohillside Mod
    Commented Dec 30, 2019 at 6:55

1 Answer 1


I'm not sure whether "shut down" is the right term here, or what kind of currently on hold questions you have in mind. But basically the approach is the same for all questions, with slight difference between any user able to vote for close:

  • If the "put on hold" reason is clear enough to explain the reason behind the hold and the action to be taken by the OP (or anybody else) to have the hold reviewed, there usually isn't an immediate need to also add a comment
  • For questions lacking focus it usually helps to give additional indications in the comments to advice the OP on how to improve the question
  • And of course if the OP comes back in the comments asking for guidance it's up to everybody on the site to actually help them.

It also might help to understand that one purpose of putting questions on hold isn't so much an action against the question as such but to prevent low-quality or guesswork answers. It's easier to give good, reusable, long-living answers to well-written questions, and that (these kind of answers) is what AD (and all the other SE sites) aim for.

PS: I would like to point out that any user can edit questions currently on hold to address the issues raised, and/or flag a question for mod attention if they don't agree with the hold.

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