Ever since the quality filter was turned up a notch, there has been a steady flow of quality filter support questions on MSO. A few of those were a bit puzzling, as at first read they looked like perfectly fine questions:
- Why does my post "not meet our quality standards"?
- My post does not meet your quality standards. Can you tell me why?
- This post does not meet our quality standards
The main problem on each one turned out to be the title. While the specifics of the quality filter are intentionally vague, the title seems to be very important, especially after the latest tweaks. And that's a good thing, titles are very important, and SO is filled with crap titles. Apparently there is even a different error message for bad titles, but more often than not people stumble upon the generic "This post does not meet our quality standards" one.
I understand why we don't want that message to be specific, most people would only bother to fix the bare minimum if they knew exactly what was wrong. At the same time though I feel it's understandable that someone stumbling upon the error message would concentrate on the post itself, and may not even think that the problem may be the title. Especially if they've previously stumbled upon the title specific error message. If you know there's a title specific error message, why would you even bother to check your title if you are getting a different error message?
Would it be possible to add a hint to the importance of the title to the generic quality message? Something along the lines of:
This post does not meet our quality standards (your title sucks!1)
It could only be shown if the quality filter detects that the title is the main problem. Or, perhaps, when the quality filter detects a very poor title, the title specific message could be shown alongside the generic quality one.
1 That's terrible, I know. I can't think of a decent phrasing, consider this as a filler and nothing more.