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Sometimes after asking a question, I recognize from the answers of other people that my question was too unspecific or just poorly written or so. That soon leads to a close of the question then. In most cases, given the comments from the people, I know (or I think I know) how to make the question better.

What should I do now? Should I edit the question and hope it got reopened? That is very unlikely because once it is closed, not many people will visit it anymore because it is not shown anymore on the front page.

If I repost it, I

  • sometimes get comments that this is a duplicate of my previous closed question or
  • that I should not just repost it to work around the closed state or
  • the question is asked better but still too unspecific.

Sometimes this again gets closed then.

The biggest problem is that in any case, it is unlikely that a closed question is going to be reopened because if at all only people who have been involved into previous discussions about the question will check back and see the question at all.

Maybe SE itself could also be extended in a few ways to solve this problem; however, this is slightly a different thing what I am asking here (which is about: what should I do, as the author).

Some related discussions (which are more from the answerer point of view):

Some random ideas which came to my mind:

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

Should I edit the question and hope it got reopened?


That is very unlikely because once it is closed, not many people will visit it anymore because it is not shown anymore on the front page.

You can leave a comment on your question, noting that you improved it and @-notifying anyone who commented on your question. This way at least those people will see that the question has been edited.

It would be nice if you could also @-notify the people who voted to close the question (or if they would automatically be informed if you edit your question). But currently you can only notify people who comment on or edit your question.

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What to do when I edited it, asked if it is OK now and didn't got any response? – Albert Sep 26 '10 at 13:03
@Albert - flag it for moderator attention explaining why. If a moderator agrees that it's now "fixed" they can reopen the question straight away. – ChrisF Sep 26 '10 at 17:31
@ChrisF: Ah, thanks for the hint, I didn't really thought about that. I also mostly try to avoid to spam too much to moderators for such simple / unimportant things. But I will think about that next time (and for some still closed questions). – Albert Sep 26 '10 at 18:20
The @-notifying anyone will not work. I can only notify one person at a time. See here. – Albert Sep 28 '10 at 1:57

Concerning your chances of re-opening, you don't care if the mass of users see it again until it is reopened. You only care about people with that power, which is to say those with 3k+ reputation. Here is why you have a chance:

  • 10k+ rep users have access to a set of tools that includes a (sometimes partial) list of questions nominated for re-opening. And some of us look at the those reasonably often.
  • Some users use favorites as bookmarks to indicate questions they should look at again later, and some use the "recent activity" tab in their profiles.
  • Finally some people way their way through the questions in time-sorted order each day, so they may come upon your question even after it has been closed.

Any way round, however, you want to get the edits in as soon as possible.

share|improve this answer
Thanks, that are some good points. However, you can read here that people think it is not an optimal solution to work around issues with such tools. Also, what to do if it is still not reopened after a month or so and you still want/need this question to be answered? – Albert Sep 26 '10 at 17:31

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