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I've been using the StackExchange sites for a few years now, but I've never ventured into meta.* before.

I recently posted a question to StackOverflow that I thought was largely on-topic, and I was surprised to at first see it receive a number of close votes without any comments.

I asked for some feedback, and there was subsequently some discussion in the comments, which is great, as well as a number of upvotes, but it was ultimately closed.

I feel that it was closed unfairly, but obviously at least five other people disagree with me. Is that it? Is asking about it here the right thing to do? I think my initial phrasing of the question may have caused some people to dismiss it, so I tried fixing it but apparently not soon enough. I think it's a lot more on-topic than a number of other questions I see passing through on a daily basis, but maybe I'm wrong. `

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You can flag for a reopen if you want. Coming to meta is IMO OK, as well. –  Manishearth May 4 '12 at 15:21
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It's not a great question, and it's also not a horrible question. It also could be answered reasonably well with some Google searches. You're likely not going to keep it open for long. –  user7116 May 4 '12 at 15:26
    
I guess. I was mostly looking for the "similar to" answers, which are harder to find with Google but easy to find if one has had experience with a particular package. For example, I thought the pointer to Django's Mercurial-based versioned store was interesting, and I would probably have never stumbled across that on my own. –  larsks May 4 '12 at 15:30
    
This comment explains some reasons while the question might get closed, but even if it deserved to get closed, off topic would be the wrong reason. 5 users are hardly a majority. If the community thinks the question should get reopened, posting here on Meta will be enough. –  Dennis May 4 '12 at 15:32
    
Well its reopened now –  Some Helpful Commenter May 4 '12 at 16:00
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It's a shopping recommendation question. See blog.stackoverflow.com/2010/11/qa-is-hard-lets-go-shopping. The question has already attracted a couple of spammy, link-only answers, which have since been deleted. –  Robert Harvey May 4 '12 at 18:40

1 Answer 1

and I was surprised to at first see it receive a number of close votes without any comments.

Voting is anonymous. Commenting on voting is considered noise and those comments should be flagged for removal, as they add nothing of value to the post.

I asked for some feedback, and there was subsequently some discussion in the comments, which is great, as well as a number of upvotes, but it was ultimately closed.

While asked with good intentions, asking for the reasons behind the close votes in the comments is also noise. People do not have to explain their close votes.

However, I will agree that this question is not off-topic.

I feel that it was closed unfairly, but obviously at least five other people disagree with me. Is that it? Is asking about it here the right thing to do?

Well, you can always vote to reopen, and some of the people reading this question have voted to reopen it.

Asking here is perfectly fine as well. That's part of what meta is for.

That said, while your question isn't off-topic, it is unfortunately, not constructive.

Stack Overflow is not a List for All Things.

List questions are not allowed on Stack Overflow, and the essence of your question is "please provide me a list of things regarding X".

Unfortunately, I'll have to close it as not constructive.

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I'm not sure you're interpreting the nature of the question correctly, but thank you for your opinion. –  larsks May 4 '12 at 15:51
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@larsks Your question is "Is there anything similar available for Python?", it is a yes/no question that can only be answered by providing items in a list. I could be misinterpreting the problem (God knows it's happened before) but what about this doesn't make it a request for a list of things? How is it nothing more than a recommendation list? –  casperOne May 4 '12 at 15:53
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Wait, did you just use your moderator privileges to unilaterally close the question based on your opinion? That seems sort of abusive. There seems to be enough interest in the question (10 upvotes as it stands right now) that it should be allowed to be open or closed based on the opinion of the community, not your own. –  larsks May 4 '12 at 15:54
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@larsks Yes, and that's my job as a moderator, actually. It's not abusive, moderators are expected to do this. Bringing it up on meta is the equivalent of flagging it for moderator attention (in addition to the rest of the community's). Also, upvotes are not an indicator of quality or whether or not a question is acceptable on Stack Overflow, it's only a measure of popularity. –  casperOne May 4 '12 at 15:55
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@larsks You don't answer the question though. It has now been reopened, but how is it not a list question? –  Bart May 4 '12 at 15:59
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Since upvotes are representative of community approval and or interest in the question, I think that speaks directly to whether or not the question is "acceptable". Neither do I think it is the job of a moderator to step in when the community is obviously in the process of making a decision; it seems to usurp the community-based decision making that makes the StackExchange sites so effective. I think there are appropriate times for moderator intervention (if people are being rude, if comments are turning into chat, etc), but I don't think this was the time or place. –  larsks May 4 '12 at 16:00
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@larsks: Your question is asking for links. These types of questions attract spam and link rot. Its the kind of thing we try to avoid here--spam, and answers that will be useless in the near future. –  Won't May 4 '12 at 16:01
    
I guess I'll just disagree and move on. –  larsks May 4 '12 at 16:01
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@larsks: Your question has ten upvotes in a single day. Seems to me like either your friends/co-workers approve, or Reddit approves. Luckily, they don't control what is and is not on topic here. This subject has been well covered here in the past, –  Won't May 4 '12 at 16:04
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That's...an interesting personal dig, there, Won't. I'm not sure that's appropriate, either. –  larsks May 4 '12 at 16:06
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A comment explaining your close vote is not noise at all if done right (explaining why the question fits the reason, referencing the FAQ or a meta post, etc.). But I agree with closing this. –  Matthew Read May 4 '12 at 16:17
    
hmm isn't Stack Overflow is not a Recommendation Engine a better fit for the question than Stack Overflow is not a List for All Things. –  Some Helpful Commenter May 4 '12 at 16:37
    
@SomeHelpfulCommenter Perhaps. In the end, the same close reasons apply. –  casperOne May 4 '12 at 16:42
    
Adam Rackis vs. casperOne. It's goin' down! –  Cody Gray May 5 '12 at 7:43
    
@adamrackis Oh seriously? Are you daft man?!?! –  casperOne May 5 '12 at 19:24

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