Consider a run-of-the-mill closed question. Not an egregious case like spam or nonsense or a repost, and not a duplicate that should remain on the site. The question should eventually be deleted, assuming it is not reopened.
How long should we hold on before deleting the question? Considerations include:
- Giving enough time for the asker or someone else to edit the question (to reword an unclear question, focus on the how rather than the what to make it constructive, etc.).
- Giving enough time for the asker to realize the question is closed, to find out why (through the close reason, the comments, etc.), to recover the text of the question, etc. (Remember that askers cannot access their deleted questions, unless they have 10k reputation and have saved the link.)
- Giving enough time for dissent to the closure to be voiced through reopen votes, comment, a meta thread, etc., and for the disagreement if any to be resolved.
- Not waiting forever — the question should be deleted if it remains closed forever.
Note that this question is not about whether we should delete closed questions, but about how long to wait between closure and deletion. I found some tangentially related threads here on Meta: Why do I have to wait before nominating a question for deletion? ; Put a time window on deleted questions before performing the delete . Nothing very helpful.
I've seen extremes being practiced. On SO I often see questions that are deleted within minutes of their closure, without giving the time for the asker to notice the closure (and the occasional extreme case of a deletion without closure). On other sites where I'm a moderator, I've been told that two weeks wasn't enough. I think the right balance lies somewhere in between, but I haven't been able to find any policy discussion.
I hope that we can converge on a policy on how long a question should remain closed before being deleted. So: how long should we wait? Why?