We currently have five standard close reasons network wide:
This question covers exactly the same ground as earlier questions on this topic; its answers may be merged with another identical question.
Questions on Stack Overflow are expected to generally relate to programming or software development in some way, within the scope defined in the faq.
subjective and argumentative
It's impossible to objectively answer this question; questions of this type are too open ended and usually lead to confrontation and argument.
not a real question
It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form.
This question would only be relevant to a small geographic area, a specific moment in time, or an extraordinarily narrow situation that is not generally applicable to the worldwide audience of the internet.
After dealing with the recent influx of 1,000+ flags per day on Stack Overflow, I have come to believe that some of these close reasons, when invoked, should be followed by a downvote from community on the question.
- Not a Real Question
- Off Topic (excluding questions that get migrated elsewhere)
Maybe it's just flag fatigue, but I've seen a lot of users who really should know better -- not newbie 1 rep users, but users with hundreds or thousands of rep -- asking egregiously off topic and/or unanswerable questions.
Having community downvote these OT and NARQ questions at the time of close would accomplish a few things:
- earlier tripping of our protection heuristics for new users, that is, no more asking 10 questions in a row that don't get downvoted, but all closed
- a disincentive for users who feel they can "try the waters" and float egregiously off-topic or utterly vague questions in our community, at no risk
- no more using up daily downvotes, at a cost of -1 rep, to the users who helped close these questions and genuinely feel these questions should be actively discouraged by downvotes (as I frequently do)