I have seen it mentioned places that re-open votes expire, but the FAQ question on Reopening makes no mention of that.

Do re-open votes expire, and if so how long does it take until they expire?

In addition, is there any way to view the total number of re-open votes a question has received over it's lifetime, such as with the SE data explorer?


I have found a few meta links referencing re-open votes expiring, and am now trying to determine if these are current or not.

The last link seems to be the most current, however I am hoping that someone who knows the current expiration rule can confirm this. I also would like to know if there is a way to see total re-open vote counts anywhere.

  • I'm not sure what you're looking for. The link you provided explains clearly what the new close/re-open policy is. Are you just looking for a way to measure total votes in the data explorer? It sounds like that's really the crux of your question, though it's thrown in as a sort of afterthought Feb 28, 2012 at 17:11
  • @AdamRackis I found that link after I posted the question thanks to a link within a link from your answer. In the process of finding it, I also found answers containing other policies on re-open votes, so wanted to know what the current rule was for re-open votes expiring.
    – Rachel
    Feb 28, 2012 at 18:33
  • that's fine - that comment of mine was from like an hour ago. That's ancient history :) You've already explained what's going on, and I even upvoted your feature request Feb 28, 2012 at 18:34

1 Answer 1


Yes, re-open votes expire after two days, per Jeff's famous answer

declining -- you can always cast a reopen vote if the post gets closed.

Also note that all close votes automatically expire after two days.

(and for that matter reopen votes, or any other vote that attempts to reach a threshold -- otherwise, over an absurdly long period of time, say 10 years, everything would reach the threshold eventually through a tiny trickle of accumulated votes)

It looks like, per the link you provided, this policy has been changed:

We now use a form of sliding expiration, so as long as close/reopen votes keep arriving at the rate of at least one every 4 days, they will not expire.

Once the votes do expire, vote aging happens every 24 hours, so you can expect the remaining very old close/reopen votes to expire at the rate of 1 per day after that, unless of course someone casts another close/reopen vote in which case the expiration timer resets to 4 days.

Also, if the question has <= 100 views, no expiration on close (or reopen) votes is done at all.

Per Tim's comment below, you cannot access expired close / re-open votes in the data explorer

  • That doesn't appear to be true anymore. I'm browsing meta, and a bunch of changes has been implemented since then. It also doesn't answer my question of how can I find a count of re-open votes.
    – Rachel
    Feb 28, 2012 at 16:35
  • @Rachel - Well I don't have an answer to your second question about the data explorer. Do you have any documentation to suggest that re-open / close votes no longer expire after 2 days? Feb 28, 2012 at 16:37
  • I found a few questions/answers on meta like this one showing changing rules for close/reopen votes. I am trying to determine what the current rule is.
    – Rachel
    Feb 28, 2012 at 16:40
  • @Rachel - if there are Meta links implying that the rules are changed, can you please add them to your question? Feb 28, 2012 at 16:57
  • Sure, they've been added. I think the 3rd link I added is the most recent one, but I am not sure and would like to have someone who actually knows the current rules to confirm this.
    – Rachel
    Feb 28, 2012 at 17:05
  • 1
    @Rachel The answer to the second question is that you cannot get this information, by the way.
    – Tim Stone
    Feb 28, 2012 at 17:13
  • Thanks @Tim - added that to my answer -- I assume you wouldn't mind. Feb 28, 2012 at 17:16
  • 1
    Well, to be a bit more clear, you can query for close/re-open votes so long as they haven't expired (VoteTypeId 6 and 7, respectively), but it's not enough to give you the clear picture over the life of the question.
    – Tim Stone
    Feb 28, 2012 at 17:24
  • 1
    @TimStone Thanks. Do you think it would be appropriate to re-raise the suggestion a year later? I am more interested in getting re-open votes than close votes for smaller sites whose questions don't get as much traffic. Some popular closed questions such as this one are up for deletion on P.SE, and in the process of trying to salvage some of them I noticed that re-open votes disappearing. I am curious how many overall re-open votes these questions have gotten.
    – Rachel
    Feb 28, 2012 at 17:27
  • @Rachel - write a feature request, but make sure you give your specific reasons, so as to differentiate your request from Pekka's (and prevent it from being closed as a dupe). Feb 28, 2012 at 17:29
  • @Rachel waffles declined that request only a few weeks ago, so his position is unlikely to have changed.
    – Tim Stone
    Feb 28, 2012 at 17:30
  • @TimStone, Adam: Thanks, I've created another question about it here. My primary reason for wanting to query total re-open votes is to determine community support for closed questions on lower-traffic SE sites. I find it extremely hard to get questions re-opened on the smaller sites, and if enough people have attempted to re-open a question I wish to bring that to the moderator's attention so they can use their super powers to bypass the 5 votes in 4 days requirement.
    – Rachel
    Feb 28, 2012 at 18:26

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