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A user has asked his question two times, the first one of which I closed.

When editing the open question, I changed the title to the one used in the closed question, and I get this message:

a question with that title already exists; please be more specific.

I chose a different title for the time being, but: is this the intended behaviour?

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Oh how I hate that – Michael Mrozek Jan 13 '12 at 15:40
hmm, yeah we should fix this for merging.. – Jeff Atwood Jan 13 '12 at 20:20
up vote 8 down vote accepted

From the next build, moderators will be able to re-use titles from existing closed posts, for the purpose of merging questions.

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This is a somewhat recent change (September of last year):

Add title uniqueness to the heuristics for detecting low-quality questions

balpha confirmed in chat that this check applies to closed questions (as you experienced), but does not apply to deleted questions.

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As jadarnel27 said, it is intended behavior, and I would like to add that any question with the same title suggests your question is a dupe of it. A closed question of the same title even more strongly suggests that your question is a dupe or off-topic and will be closed for the same reason. If you think your question is different enough to stay open, change your title to make the difference clear.

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