I committed to the Apocalyptic Defense proposal to test to see whether I could commit to a closed proposal. However, the proposal has now been locked as well. While locking does prevent users from committing, it also prevents those that had previously committed from uncommitting. Since commits are closely rationed on the site, I'd like to get it back. If locking is going to be the standard mechanism on Area 51 for preventing users from committing to a proposal, then I suggest that it be modified to allow users that had previously committed to uncommit.
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Why not just automatically un-commit all the followers?
We don't want to automatically un-commit because Proposals can ultimately be re-opened (just like closed questions in Stack Overflow). Users were told that they would be notified when the site reached beta. We wouldn't want to remove those commitments if the Proposal is re-opened.
Why not allow users to un-commit from closed Proposals?
We could but that puts the effort back on the user. Most users don't follow Area 51 that closely and wont know they can commit to another proposal unless they check. It can also be potentially damaging to the Proposal. We don't want to cause a flight from closed Proposals because people may not understand that a closed Proposal isn't necessarily deleted. Many will remove their commitment under the mistaken assumption that it is the correct thing to do. But those commitments are, effectively, available for the users to apply somewhere else.
Tecnnical note for you programmers/debuggers out there: There's a bit of an odd situation where a re-opened Proposal may causes users to have more than three commitments. That's okay. We'll treat that situation like Badges where users don't ever lose a badge but it is reclaimed when the users earns the next one.
As of now, commitments to closed proposals no longer count against your commitment limit.