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This question is an example of a poor question that I would not hesitate to flag. It justs asks 'how I do this in such and such language?'. I did not flag it because somebody was nice enough to give a very thorough answer to it. What should I do in that case? To flag or not to flag? It is a case similar to the one discussed here, but the difference is that in this case there is nothing to edit. The asker is not facing a specific problem, but asking for a complete code.


Based on the answers and comments given, a possible approach would be to flag for deletion those without any feedback, and downvote those that already received an answer. Would you agree on that?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Please, don't flag "poor" questions that already have either upvotes or answers. If they do, then they aren't as poor as you think.

In fact, please stop flagging questions as "poor" unless there is something that can be done about it. If the question is so poor as to not be answerable, flag it as not a real question (if you cannot vote to close). If the question needs formatting, edit it. If the question is lame, but answerable, downvote it.

If the user consistently asks poor questions, fails to accept answers, provide answers to other questions, does not participate in voting, THEN flag it as poor, and let the mods know that the user needs a timeout.

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I did not flag it, but I am still looking for an answer to a very particular kind of what I understand is a "poor question". Please, check also my comment to Joseph Earl: I want to know what to do with the "gimme teh codez" questions, in which code has been given. I would not know what to edit in those. furthermore, it has been downvoted several times, so it's not just me that I don't like that particular question. –  Aleadam Apr 5 '11 at 16:04
    
@Aleadam: is this the type of question we want? Not particularly. What do we do about it? Let the community take action, and flag for mods attention in extraordinary circumstances. How do you improve these? You can't. You deal with them and move on. –  Won't Apr 5 '11 at 16:13

I'd say that if the answer provides content that would be useful to another user looking for a similar question (or solution to a similar problem) then it should not be flagged.

If this is the case (which for this question I would say it is), then I would perhaps edit the question to make it clearer for future users visiting the page - the user is asking "How do I calculate Loan/Mortgage rates in jQuery?". In this case I might also consider editing the answer - probably just add a comment or two into the JavaScript methods.

I think in this case, you were too late for flagging. A user might ask "What code do I need in language Y to make a Windows/OSX competitor from scratch?". Incredibly broad in terms of programming and really a billion different, smaller questions. Thus the question should be closed, and the questioner asked to research the topic and ask more specific questions that are actually answerable.

But if someone happens to have the time/intellect to post the code for entire working OS as an answer before you flag it then... no matter how broad and unanswerable the question seemed initially, it has been answered. And if it has been properly answered (the answer resolves the question posed and not a slightly or unrelated one) then the question is a perfectly valid one.

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+1 for recommending improving the question, that's the key here –  Daniel DiPaolo Apr 4 '11 at 22:51
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I lean towards respecting the person that took the time to answer it and not closing it, but: is this the kind of questions SO wants? It's the typical "gimme teh codez" question. How do you improve those? –  Aleadam Apr 5 '11 at 1:49

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