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I felt like being treated as a second-class user on SO when I saw my question, which was more about history of a programming language than anything else, being closed as subjective. And I see questions like

What's the hardest or most misunderstood aspect of LINQ?

by popular users not being classified as subjective. (There are other examples too.)

Yes, I'm aware it asked for what you find most difficult in the body of the question. Call it a poll. But then all subjective questions can be converted to polls by forming then to ask for only your opinion.

My question asked only for historical reasons for why something was created. I don't know how that is subjective (people may differ on why they think it was so) but the recorded history is only fact.

My question was

Why did C# come to be when we already had Java? (History)

but I doubt it that even if I had framed it as

Why do you think C# came to be when we already had Java?

it wouldn't have been closed.

Do some users just have special treatment?

PS: If you say Jon Skeet's question was for a talk he was going to deliver then I don't see how my question couldn't have been for a book I am writing?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Just a few points:

  • Don't forget to look at the date of Jon Skeet's question: June 27, 09. The view on what is "subjective and argumentative" has changed over time, becoming stricter.

  • Do some users just have special treatment? I'd say clearly "yes" in that people will think twice before voting to close a question from a high-reputation user; but "no" in that eventually, it will get closed like any other question, without exception.

  • Don't forget it takes only five people to vote to close.

  • Also, you got a nice amount of feedback, didn't you?

You could consider asking the question with an alternative wording - say, "What technological factors and necessities led to the development of C#? Were some of the key points not already covered by Java?" or something like that. The same question can often pass through when worded differently.

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I still don't seem to get how my question should have been closed. –  101 Oct 22 '10 at 9:45
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@Ashish well, in my view, it fulfills "subjective and argumentative", altough it is a good question. I added a paragraph with a re-wording suggestion - no guarantees that'll work better, but it might –  Pëkka Oct 22 '10 at 9:46
    
Re-wording suggestion? –  101 Oct 22 '10 at 9:53
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@Ashish the last paragraph –  Pëkka Oct 22 '10 at 9:57
    
I've credited you with the re-wording. Thanks a lot. –  101 Oct 22 '10 at 14:05

No you are not a second-class user. The problem you are facing is that the community has changed a lot.

In the beginning SO was new and the community needed to grow and adapt. Lots of serious questions has been asked and answered, but several not so serious got lots of attention.

There were open/close wars and countless debates and finally the community is more or less settled to the serious question part. So all questions that do not fit in this category have a chance to be closed.

Keep in mind, that to close a question, you need the vote of five users with 3000 rep. (In the beginning one user would be enough.) And it also takes the same amount of votes to reopen the question.

Your question is in the grey area. But now it needs 2 additional reopen votes.

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Thank you. I've even reworded it. And I'm new here do I had no idea about how things have changed. –  101 Oct 22 '10 at 10:16
    
@Ashish: Much better question now. I voted to reopen. –  David Thornley Oct 22 '10 at 14:15
    
@David: Thank you. :) –  101 Oct 22 '10 at 15:20

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