Why can questions on Meta be closed as primarily opinion based?

Aren't the majority of the questions on Meta "primarily opinion based" and thus eligible for closure?

I would guess the reason is that close reasons are the same on SO and Meta or perhaps across SE and it is assumed that they aren't used on Meta, but it struck me as odd to see a question with a "primarily opinion based" close vote on it a moment ago.


2 Answers 2


The main reason it exists is the close reasons are standardized across the SE network, including meta. Obviously some of the reasons apply better on some sites than others and I would argue that the primarily opinion based one is less applicable to meta sites than regular ones.

On the other hand, the question you likely saw this vote used on was not only opinion based, but the resulting opinions don't matter for anything. In most cases on meta, the idea is to collect opinions and arrive at some sort of consensus. The question was asking something not only subjective but highly variable and of no consequence either way. The result will not be consensus about the way something on the SE network should be done. That question could perhaps be closed as Off Topic for not having encountered a problem on an SE site or something like that. Or it could just be downvoted and ignored as useless.

While the close reason isn't a perfect match, there are sometimes cases where it is the best match and a question should be closed. On meta I suspect it's a pretty rare question that really calls for closing because it's opinion based. This one for example is opinion based but quite appropriate for meta because the decision matters to the usage/moderation of an SE site.

  • 1
    I guess I see your point, but not constructive seems like a better fit for meta
    – apaul
    Aug 3, 2013 at 17:44
  • @apaul34208 We don't have a "not constructive" close reason any more. Hence the adaption of the not-quite-so-good-a-match reason.
    – Caleb
    Aug 3, 2013 at 17:46
  • I guess I should have said it would have been a better fit...
    – apaul
    Aug 3, 2013 at 17:52

I'm just going to flat out say that this predefined closing reason is a terrible terribad fit for what it is used for (i.e. frivolous discussions or discussions that lead nowhere). Like you said, almost all Meta posts are "primarily opinion-based".

And I agree with your comment that "Not Constructive" (may its virtual inanimate soul rest in peace) would have been a 140% better fit.

  • 1
    Thanks; "frivolous discussions or discussions that lead nowhere" hurts, but at least I understand this.
    – Nemo
    May 1, 2015 at 8:13

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