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Here's the question, um, in question. (Just in case it's deleted, the question is "Chrome doesn't delete session cookies", regarding a design decision by Chrome developers regarding cookie-handling.)

The question contains nothing about programming, and a web browser is not a tool specific to programmers. A person who is completely clueless about programming can still understand how cookies work, and what a session cookie is.

A comment by another user mentioned php, but that doesn't magically make the question on-topic. (It might be a different story if the OP made the comment.) Also, the one answer that mentioned a programmatic server-side workaround got downvoted several times, with the commenters saying the question wasn't about the server-side (specifically php). It seems obvious to the participants themselves that programming is irrelevant to the question.

I flagged the question as off-topic, but the flag was rejected. Am I misunderstanding the policy? This meta question seems to agree with me.

EDIT: Ok, now I can see why the cookie question is on-topic. But I still don't understand why the JS-disabled question is off-topic. Please see my comment to Manishearth's answer.

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I'd say "I'm trying to set session cookie in javascript like this:" makes it a programming question. – Daniel Fischer Feb 20 '13 at 17:07

The difference between this and the other one is that the other one is completely a browser question. If you didn't know the answer, would you say that it could be answered with code? No.

In this case, looking at the question, I see the underlying question "How do I set a session cookie via JS in Chrome?", which is a JS (and browser compatibility) question. On topic.

The fact that the answer is "you can't"/"it's a bug"/"you need to fiddle with the settings" doesn't change the question, and still keeps it on topic.

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I agree with your principle, but the application seems more difficult. In the "JS still runs" question, what if the OP asked, "Is there some JS function to call in order to fully stop JS after JS is disabled in the browser preferences?" Without knowing the answer, I'd have to say, maybe there is such a function. And if rephrasing the question in that way makes it on-topic, then why not suggest that the OP rephrase it, instead of closing? – Kelvin Feb 20 '13 at 17:26
@Kelvin: Possibly... But an answer to that q wouldn't answer his original q. – Manishearth Feb 20 '13 at 17:39
I think the problem with discussing the JS question is that there are multiple issues with it. I still can't agree 100% that it's off-topic, but I can agree it's not constructive or too localized. The meta answer saying it's off topic because it relates to a bug doesn't help because the OP didn't necessarily consider it a bug. But I think my comments here are getting off-topic because I'm no longer discussing the cookie question :) – Kelvin Feb 20 '13 at 18:12

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