I have been through a few re-open requests and some shared a similar issue.

Like this one

It was originally closed as unclear. Then the OP changes the question but his edit still makes it a very poor question with no research shown and the answer could be as simple as yes or no - only if the question didn't get closed.

I judge looking at the new(revised) question ignoring the original closure reason. Even though the revised question still doesn't make a good question and would probably get closed very quickly I just leave it closed with the old closure reason.

  • Am I doing the right thing or should we re-open and let it get closed for a new - more appropriate reason?

The answer seems obvious: leave it closed, but

  • is this how all of you process re-open queue?

Note: I am asking because sometimes I've noticed others voting to re-open such cases and I want to confirm that I am on the same page as everyone else

  • I've seen a few questions that were rightfully put on hold, but for the wrong reason. I guess the best action is to "Leave Closed" and add a comment. Commented Oct 10, 2013 at 12:30
  • 2
    Probably depends heavily on if the new close reason would be "duplicate", then a close reopen is helpful Commented Oct 10, 2013 at 12:48
  • I sometimes (infrequently, because it's tedious) flag such questions for mod attention, explaining the issue and asking to consider re-close with more appropriate reason
    – gnat
    Commented Oct 10, 2013 at 12:49

1 Answer 1


My rule of thumb is "don't re-open if it's still a bad question". I think of it as a variant of the "don't migrate bad questions" rule.

If you feel like showing a new user the ropes, you can leave a comment explaining why their revision is not helpful.

It would be nice if we had a "leave closed but for a different reason" option, but that would just add another option to the process - and Stack Exchange tries (rightfully) to keep the UI as simple as possible.

There is also a practical consideration: if the question is re-opened so that you close it for a different reason, it will enter the Close Votes review queue - which is far too big already.

The comment of @Richard Tingle made me realize there should be 1 exception: I agree with him that if the new close reason would be "duplicate", re-opening and re-closing could be helpful. The link to the duplicate question that gets added after re-closing the question, could be useful for future visitors.

  • 2
    when I see that edit of (still worthy to stay closed) has invalidated current reason too much, I typically flag it to moderator attention asking to re-close with a more appropriate reason
    – gnat
    Commented Jan 27, 2014 at 10:40
  • Add the flag for moderator attention option as an answer Commented Oct 15, 2016 at 9:15

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