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I'd like to think that SO can be a place for newer members to ask questions they are very stumped with. I agree that a user shouldn't just post, "Hey, I want to do X, can you help?". But in some cases, a user provides a little bit of detail and with a lot of massaging the question could be useful to other members. I find these posts a lot for someone learning/starting to learn a new technology or language.

Are posts like this worth trying to salvage with extensive editing to make them phrased in a way people don't instantly downvote? I find people who phrase a question in a way that makes them seem new to SO instantly gets it downvoted. To what degree should I concern myself with trying to "save" these posts for the good of the community, or should I let them just burn and get closed?

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Only you can answer the degree of concern issue... It is a subjective thing. –  Oded Mar 5 '13 at 20:44
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If you can edit questions to not be open-ended, please do go ahead! If they were closed, vote to reopen. You'll do the OP a service teaching them, certainly. However, you'll find that there is a lot of work to be done. –  Martijn Pieters Mar 5 '13 at 20:45
    
@MartijnPieters I also assume most of the OP are just looking for a quick answer and are too lazy to research, but there are newbie questions from newbie posters that I feel are very hard to find in the sometimes constant posts of, "I want you to do X for me... GO!" So that fixing it to teach them, I assume is falling on deaf ears. –  Walls Mar 5 '13 at 20:47

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

I often edit questions that have particular value to the site. If it is one of a number of like questions I flag it and move on. If it is special and it enriches SO, then I edit it. No point in wasting your time on something useless, there are enough questions of value in need of your time.

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it's tough finding those ones needing my time. Sometimes, it's nice to get a softball question to get your mind stretched out for a day of developing. Nice warm ups for the "big" issues. It's good to know I am not the only one trying to save some of these "lesser" posts. –  Walls Mar 5 '13 at 20:59
    
You are not alone. –  MonkeyDoug Mar 5 '13 at 21:00

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