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I'm just wondering how does a question get marked as closed? In the FAQ it states you can vote to close a question past 250, but what does that mean exactly? It doesn't state who/how a question gets marked as closed.

Also, what does it mean once a question is closed, do they get purged after a certain amount of time?

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Why is this question voted down? Seems like a reasonable question? – Eric Sep 15 '09 at 13:28
Probably because it's been asked at least a dozen times. I can't say for sure as I'm neither the downvoter nor telepathic, but that seems the most likely reason. – Joel Coehoorn Sep 15 '09 at 13:49
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Closing a question effectively means that it can't be added to or answered. The question can however still be edited and commented on. This normally happens if it is a duplicate question, or various other reasons depending on the site.

The voting process works differently depending on your level.

  • 250+ allows you to vote to close your own questions. The change still requires 4 more votes.
  • 3000+ rep users can vote to close, and 5 votes are needed until the question is closed.
  • Diamond moderators can close immediatly.

These question remain in the system, and can either be voted to be re-open or deleted. The same voting rules apply for these options.

Only deleted questions are removed from the system after 3 days if memory serves.

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Thank you Diago, much appreciated. – Brett Ryan Sep 15 '09 at 11:15
I think you still need 4 others to vote to close your own questions too - but it might have changed since I last tried it. – ChrisF Sep 15 '09 at 11:20
@ChrisF - Had to go to SO to test this but yes, if you vote to close your own question it requires 4 more votes before it is closed. – BinaryMisfit Sep 15 '09 at 11:53
Isn't it embarrassing for a moderator to be asking a question that needs to be closed? – devinb Sep 15 '09 at 12:08
@devinb - Why would it be? – BinaryMisfit Sep 15 '09 at 12:32

Just to add, it's the ability to vote to close your own questions that appears at 250 rep.

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+1 Ammended my answer accordingly. – BinaryMisfit Sep 15 '09 at 11:18

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