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I have often found questions which honestly do prompt the response "What have you tried?"

I tried posting a link to whathaveyoutried.com, only to find that it had been blocked. At this point, I looked through Meta, and found this post, which explained why it has been blocked. I agree with this decision as a general rule.

However, I'm still not totally clear on how best to handle these types of questions. Certain ones are very borderline. This question, for instance, has a lot of room for improvement, as the user is clearly asking for something specific, but hasn't bothered to communicate it.

Is it appropriate to flag these questions? If so, which flag do I use? If not, should I simply downvote, comment, and leave it be?

Note: In this case, I did flag this question, and it was closed - though in retrospect I would have liked to ask the user what they tried.

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Vote to close as 'not constructive' or 'too localized'. There's really nothing more to do without the OP themselves clarifying. –  Richard J. Ross III Apr 2 '13 at 1:42
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@RichardJ.RossIII But, how will they know to clarify? Or, should we just not bother? –  Emrakul Apr 2 '13 at 1:46

1 Answer 1

up vote 6 down vote accepted

That's a great example of a question where you probably don't really care what he's tried - I certainly don't; by all indications, he's put so little thought into the problem that he's not even capable of describing what he needs, so exposing his halfhearted efforts to implement it would hardly improve the question any.

If you want to leave a useful comment, just say that - "You're asking a very broad question with no indication of what (if anything) you already know. Please try to describe exactly what you're trying to achieve, and where you're running into difficulty achieving it."

FWIW, we do have plans for the near future to improve the close reasons and descriptions with these sorts of questions in mind.

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Ah, perfect. Admittedly, it wasn't the best example, but regardless, questions like the ones I described do exist. Changing the close flags would do it! Thank you! –  Emrakul Apr 2 '13 at 3:08

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