I was writing a question on StackOverflow and accidentally submitted it early; I was trying to hit "Return" to accept a tag but instead I submitted my question. I then immediately deleted the question.

After I'd finished typing up the question anew, StackOverflow told me I'd have to wait 20 minutes, since I'm a "new" user and had already asked one question. But I hadn't asked anything; I'd written and deleted a question, only.

Your system should only throttle questions that show up on the system, and exclude deleted questions from the throttling. It seems like accidentally submitting a question is easy enough with your web forms that a lot of news users may fall into this trap.

(UPDATE: Apparently questions can be undeleted. I had no idea. I guess that's why they call me a "new user"! This is a very cool capability but most new users will not assume it's there. Maybe make this capability more discoverable. Or not.)


Why not edit and then undelete your question? This seems like the most reasonable solution, to me. Otherwise, you're spamming the deleted posts, which the 10k Club can see. And why do you want to spam them, Ryan Tate? Why?!

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  • I was wondering about that myself. Makes more sense just to revise what you already have than to start completely from scratch. – TheTXI Aug 16 '09 at 20:48
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    I am a new user; it never occured to me I could undelete my question. Sorry I brought it up! ;-> – user133864 Aug 16 '09 at 21:06

Your solution would not be ideal. If we didn't count deleted questions for throttling you would likely have instances where spam users could post spam questions (which has happened in the past) and when they get immediately deleted by a mod, they would now be free to post again (since the deleted question now would not count towards the 20 minute time limit).

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    True. Perhaps I should not have suggested a specific solution. Since I did, I'll suggest another, which seems fairly obvious to me: Exclude questions deleted by the asker from the throttling. – user133864 Aug 16 '09 at 20:39
  • Rolling back the "throttle count" when a user deletes their own question does seem reasonable to me. – Rex M Aug 16 '09 at 20:44

In this case you could have edited and undeleted the question just fine. I do however believe the system needs some work in general. When I first came to MSO I asked a question, but it submitted with errors (not missing tags etc, the actual error page). Not only was my question not posted, but I was unable to ask it again for 20 minutes. I waited, and tried again. Another error. It worked on the 3rd try, but it took me 40 minutes to ask a question.

The system should ensure the question is fully posted before enforcing the limit.

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I can see your point, but I can also understand why the developers would not want to add complexity to the code for this rather specific case. I know this is not rocket science, but as the other answers show there are a bit more to the case than a simple if statement.

In short: I doubt that a lot of users will see the situation you describe as a big issue, so if it was my call I would prefer simpler code.

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