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Seems like I run into a lot of StackOverflow questions with a specific set of circumstances that prevents anyone from giving a good answer right off the bat:


  • The question poses a real-world situation or problem with actual code in use
  • The question doesn't post any code OR the question posts pseudo code (which often incorrectly reflects the nature of the issue), instead of the actual code that is broken

In situations like these, it's extremely common for the first comment on the question to be something like, "Please post your code", "Please post real code, not pseudo code", or "For god's sake, we're not mind readers - post you're code already!"

Three questions arise from that situation:

  1. Is there a "vote to revise" feature, or something similar, where basically the question is good, but we're telling the person asking to question to "go back, and add (x, y, z) before anyone can help you"?
  2. In lieu of a "vote to revise" feature, is it equivalent to (a) comment that the person should add the missing code, and simultaneously (b) voting to close, forcing the person to open a new, properly formed question?
  3. What would be the value of a "vote to revise" feature which (a) doesn't cost the questioner reputation (or only minimal reputation) and (b) if a "vote to revise" threshold is reached, the question is hidden from the community until the question is revised and updates saved, at which time the question is re-posted fresh, with all comments and answers removed?
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Very relevant:… In short, we should be teaching people how to ask good questions the first time, not giving them crutches for their marginal questions. – Robert Harvey Sep 21 '11 at 21:47

For questions like that, I often add a comment asking for the actual code (or vote up the existing comment to that effect) and vote down the question. When the code is added, I remove the down vote. Without the code, it is a poor question that only the asker can answer. I really don't feel this situation calls for some automated mechanism.

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