I've read through a few "I want to delete my own question" threads on Meta Stack Overflow already, and haven't found any that particularly cover this case.

I asked a question recently on Arqade:


This was voted closed as a duplicate of this question:

Is there locational damage in Skyrim?

Since the latter question was obviously an appropriate duplicate, and my question had no votes or answers whatsoever, I decided I would just delete it. But then, I was greeted by this error:

To allow for possible reopening, you may delete in 2 days

This all happened within hardly 20 minutes of me posting the question in the first place. I fail to understand the point of this. Perhaps if there were some up-votes or answers to the question, it might make sense. However, as it stands, we now have a question with:

  • No votes whatsoever (up or down).
  • No answers.
  • Only a single (and largely irrelevant) comment not made by the OP.
  • Five 3k+ rep users agreeing it is duplicate and therefore superfluous.
  • The OP expressly desiring the question to be deleted, implying:
    • The OP has probably reviewed the duplicate question, and found their answer there.
    • The question holds no further value to the OP.
    • The OP agrees (with the close-voters) that the question provides no added value to the community.

At this point, what good reason could there be for disallowing the OP to delete their own question? Could the system be modified to permit this?

  • 1
    The error message describes exactly why you're not allowed to delete. Closing a question is not a final act; the question can always be reopened by five community votes. The two days gives the community the opportunity to reopen, if they wish. That said, there are no upvotes on your question, so you really ought to be able to summarily delete if you want to, regardless of the closure.
    – user102937
    Jan 4, 2012 at 21:01
  • 2
  • It is possible, however, that the close-voters and the OP are wrong. It may be the case that a number of other people are having exactly the same question, and that it's subtly different from the selected duplicate, even if the OP thinks it's close enough.
    – cdeszaq
    Jan 4, 2012 at 21:02
  • 12
    @RobertHarvey I think it's a bit odd, since you would be able to delete it if it wasn't closed (since there are no answers to it). Doesn't closure mean the question is less worthy of staying? Jan 4, 2012 at 21:08
  • @NullUserExceptionอ_อ I agree.
    – user102937
    Jan 4, 2012 at 21:12
  • @NullUserExceptionอ_อ That's one of the questions I'd already read through. It doesn't apply here because my question doesn't have any answers. I'm also not a 20k+ rep user (not even a 3k+ user) on the site.
    – Iszi
    Jan 4, 2012 at 21:19
  • @RobertHarvey Thanks for the edit. I was pretty sure other (non-closed question) rules would permit the delete, but wasn't positive.
    – Iszi
    Jan 4, 2012 at 21:20
  • This question is an EXACT DUPLICATE of a question I asked earlier, meta.stackexchange.com/q/51265/157251. It really isn't fair that it gets to stay just because Jeff Atwood answered it. Jan 11, 2012 at 18:19
  • @EvanCarroll This is not at all duplicate of the question you've linked. My question is about the system preventing deletion. Your question is about the system allowing restoration. There's a very distinct difference.
    – Iszi
    Jan 11, 2012 at 18:37
  • 2
    @cdeszaq: Nothing prevents these other hypothetical people from posting a question of their own.
    – jscs
    Jan 11, 2012 at 19:15

2 Answers 2


The time restriction when one's question is on-hold/closed has been lifted.

This will be pushed out in the next build, > rev 2013.7.8.1192.

  • What exactly was pushed? User can delete his own closed question instantly if it's with no votes and no answers? Jul 9, 2013 at 7:08
  • Yes, see my edit; other restrictions still apply, like the ones you listed. Jul 9, 2013 at 7:10
  • Err?....
    – nicael
    Jun 30, 2015 at 20:25

Simply flag it for moderator attention and they can delete it.

Although I guess allowing self deletion of a question that is closed with no answers and no upvotes couldn't really hurt..

  • Could you explain for what good reason this is necessary? Is this something that might be fixed?
    – Iszi
    Jan 11, 2012 at 17:53
  • 1
    My point is that there is an existing system for this already Jan 11, 2012 at 17:55
  • 3
    Certainly I'm not the architect of said system, but it would seem to me that this sort of matter is not what the system was meant to be for. The system is there for exceptional cases, and this is hardly the sort of case that should warrant use of it. If the question had still been open, I would have been able to delete it. However, since it is closed - an action that really speaks to further warrant the deletion - I cannot. This is something that should be fixed, instead of being deferred to moderators.
    – Iszi
    Jan 11, 2012 at 18:32
  • 1
    Perhaps, since there is a simple work-around for it, this problem doesn't need the highest priority. However, I don't believe it should be dismissed entirely either.
    – Iszi
    Jan 11, 2012 at 18:34

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