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I see there is other discussion regarding typos and similar "simple" syntax issues being too localised.

I have answered a question after actually pasting the code into the IDE, duplicating the issue, and then finding Public needed to be added to the code automatically supplied by the IDE. That has not yet been closed.

I see another question where a similar insertion is required, but it has been closed as "too localised". It is a slightly more esoteric scenario but the code requiring the public insertion was actually included in the question. (I have previously voted to reopen, even though no further answer is necessary.)

Probably the result of pointing these discrepancies out will be the closure of the question I answered as too localised, but as the question's been answered it doesn't matter. Of course this emphasises the non-importance of this, unless closure eventually becomes deletion.

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So you think that for both of these questions the answer is likely to be helpful to other people who will come across the questions? – Servy Apr 4 '13 at 18:17
@Servy I could live with the current status quo: The question I answered can happen to others, in that I found it by following the same steps pasting into the IDE; whereas the closed question is a direct oversight in the pasted code. But IMHO neither should be closed. – Mark Hurd Apr 4 '13 at 18:37
up vote 1 down vote accepted

Note the title of the first question:

How to expose current assembly to CodeProvider

But in actual fact, the question is about fixing a compilation error:

'TestString' is not declared. It may be inaccessible due to its protection level. (BC30451)

...which is almost certainly too localized. Users arriving from Google hoping to find out how to expose the current assembly to CodeProvider may, or may not, be helped by the fact that a complete code example is provided, along with the fix for the compiler error.

The second question

Class is not available in this context because it is Friend

...actually asks the real question in the title, which could have contributed to the decision to close it. It is also tagged C++, the only tag community in the entire Stack Overflow universe with the dubious distinction of having created a (more or less) officially sanctioned meta tag: . It seems reasonable to assume that they might be less forgiving of basic questions than the C# folks.

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I don't find questions like that too localized because it's likely someone else is looking for the answer to "It may be inaccessible due to its protection level. (BC30451)". There have been many times when I copy/paste an error message into a search and come up with some great SO results that have bad titles, or the user is looking at the wrong bit of code as the source of the error. The correct course of action should be to correct the title of the question, not close it as too localized (or close it as a duplicate, as I'm sure that error has been asked about before). – Rachel Apr 4 '13 at 19:43
@Rachel: The problem with these kinds of questions is that there are a limitless number of highly-localized causes. The answer is always the same: fix your protection level, or do the thing that causes the protection level to not matter. Finding a question and answer pair in the vast sea of Google results for that compiler error, that matches your specific problem, would be the wildest stroke of luck; the real solution is better education, which the linked question doesn't necessarily provide. – Robert Harvey Apr 4 '13 at 19:45
@Rachel: With respect to closing as a duplicate, you can't, because like a fingerprint, every one is different. I've changed the title of the question, but now it really is too localized, and I've closed it as such. Note that, unless the community finds the information completely useless, it will still be available on the site for anyone who happens to stumble across it. – Robert Harvey Apr 4 '13 at 19:53
I begrudgingly accept this is the right thing to do, after I found the answer, but the OP of that question didn't know the problem wasn't related to special issues with exposing the "current assembly to CodeProvider". – Mark Hurd Apr 5 '13 at 0:01
@MarkHurd: Bad titles are a very common problem; the OP asked the actual question (which is now in the title) in the body of their post. – Robert Harvey Apr 5 '13 at 0:03
I don't see why [language-lawyer] is a meta tag. Perhaps it's just badly named. Maybe it should be [c++-language] or [c++-language-spec], because that's really what it's about. But [language-lawyer] is actually a well-known technical term, and as such, it's more descriptive. But questions really can be specifically about the C++ language specification, so the tag is appropriate; nothing meta about that. – Cody Gray Apr 5 '13 at 4:44
Note here, given this accepted answer, I should consider changing the title of this question to "Should “simple” answers to seemingly specific questions cause the question title to be edited?", or similar :-) – Mark Hurd Apr 10 '13 at 4:47

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