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Anyone with vote-to-close privileges will often run across situations where a question already has 3 or 4 close votes for a single reason. When this occurs, it doesn't matter what a user chooses, the close reason has already been determined. This got me thinking.

  1. 3 not constructive votes - The question will inevitably be closed as not constructive.

  2. 3 too localized votes - The question will inevitably be closed as too localized.

  3. 3 not a real question votes - The question will inevitably be closed as not a real question.

  4. 3 off topic votes, which are not all "belongs on" votes for the same site - The question will inevitably be closed as off topic.

  5. 4 off topic votes, which are all "belongs on" votes for the same site - The question will inevitably be migrated to the target site.

  6. 3 exact duplicate votes - The question will inevitably be closed as an exact duplicate and all possible duplicates will be listed.

So, only case 6 would allow the user to actually provide any additional feedback that will affect the overall outcome of the closure -- adding another possible duplicate link. In cases 1 through 5, is it really necessary for further close-voters to specify a close reason since their reason won't actually affect the outcome? Do all the votes get recorded somewhere visibly so that moderators or developers can, at a later time, view who made what vote?

Is it possible that we could display this information somewhere, or is it too useless? Note: I'm not necessarily saying display who cast what type of vote (not that I see an issue with it privacy-wise).

Ultimately, would it be viable to allow the user to just click the close button and let the system automatically select the vote when it has determined that their input will not affect the outcome, or does the system still value their input of what type they would have selected?

Note: I'm not necessarily requesting features. I'm just wondering what people think about this.

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I just don't see the point in adding an if statement to the code that changes the user's experience depending on how many votes have already been cast. Even if it doesn't matter which close reason they pick because the system is programmed to let the majority decision override theirs, that's an implementation detail that they shouldn't have to be concerned with. –  Cody Gray Mar 31 '12 at 7:16
    
I have noticed in the cases you note here that I just click on anything to cast the last/penultimate vote. I would be embarrassed to see some of the results if those were displayed! –  Andrew's a Unitato Mar 31 '12 at 7:31
    
@Andrew Barber: I see that you're enjoying using this new word you picked up recently‌​... –  BoltClock's a Unicorn Mar 31 '12 at 7:54
    
@BoltClock Pfffft! –  Andrew's a Unitato Mar 31 '12 at 7:57
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By enforcing two clicks you're much less likely to make a mistake and click close without meaning to... –  ben is uǝq backwards Mar 31 '12 at 10:13
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1 Answer 1

up vote 3 down vote accepted

In cases 1 through 5, is it really necessary for further close-voters to specify a close reason since their reason won't actually affect the outcome?

A moderator's vote will change the outcome, we are awesome like that. So other than a check for what the the previous close votes are (which also includes an extra check for edge case 4), another check would have to be implemented to display all the close reasons if a moderator is voting to close. Too much trouble for what it's worth.

And let's not forget that the close vote reasons aren't visible only to users who can vote to close, but also to the OP. For OPs I'd like to think checking what the close votes are about is a very strong hint on what the problem is with their question, there is some small educational value in displaying the different reasons why people thought the question is close worthy.

Do all the votes get recorded somewhere visibly so that moderators or developers can, at a later time, view who made what vote?

Moderators and regular users don't have access to such information. Obviously the developers do, but I don't really think it's a useful statistic.

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