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What is a historical lock, and what is it used for?

I answered the following question about WPF books back in August 2008. I thought I'd be a good citizen and go and update my answer with some more books I've read since that time. However, the question has been locked and closed.

Now I realise this isn't the best question or answer. It's subjective; the answer was my opinion. That said, it seems to be a very useful answer for anyone that might be looking for information on WPF. In fact, if I search for "WPF book" on google, it's the first result. Yet I can't seem to update the answer. It seems to go against the very goals of the site - of having an updated, relevant, useful programming Q & A site.

Without getting too much into politics (I rarely visit Meta), I was wondering why such questions are marked as locked and closed, and what can be done to make these active again. From looking at this question How do you reopen a closed question?, it seems there is normally a link to vote to reopen - is the link missing because the question was closed by a moderator? If so, what can be done from here?

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marked as duplicate by animuson, Mark Trapp, Manishearth, jmort253, Lorem Ipsum Jul 2 '12 at 6:14

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

1 Answer 1

up vote 7 down vote accepted

As stated in the lock notice

This question exists because it has historical significance, but it is not considered a good, on-topic question for this site[.]

Your answer was probably useful to a lot of people (that's partially why the question has been locked), but it's unlikely that it will get reopened.

[...] it seems there is normally a link to vote to reopen - is the link missing because the question was closed by a moderator? If so, what can be done from here?

The link is missing because of the lock. This is also the only thing that prevents the question from getting deleted.

The lock can only be undone by a Moderator. Unless there's a major change in the site's policy, that's not going to happen.

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Thanks for the info on historical locks. I had missed the link to that part of the FAQ on the original question. It's interesting though - the FAQ states that historical locks should not be used if the question is being maintained. I can't maintain it with the lock. Chicken and Egg I guess. Even more interesting is the link from the historical lock to rule 3 from blog.stackoverflow.com/2010/01/stack-overflow-where-we-hate-fun I'd interpret this question as something someone can learn from or make them better at their job. –  Brad Leach Jul 2 '12 at 2:15
1  
@brad it's a "let's make a list of X!" which may have been allowed in 2008 but has long since been deprecated with extreme prejudice network-wide. –  Jeff Atwood Jul 2 '12 at 3:36

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