When migration of a question to a valid site is rejected, it leaves an awful dead end.

  1. The closed question looks off-topic, but it's not.
  2. The closed question looks like a dead end, hiding the real content from the user.

Getting to the real content in this case requires following an extended chain of events that have nothing to do with the content itself.

Stack Exchange is not a forum. People come here looking for answers. If they have to read the edit history or follow a discussion thread, we're not doing our job.

A Real Example

Let's say you're wondering when people first figured out that the atmosphere ends at a certain height. You go over to History of Science & Math and you find this question. It's exactly what you wanted to ask.

Go on, take a look.

Oh, it's closed. I guess there won't be any answers to it. That's too bad.

Don't worry, the question is still alive somewhere else, and it has several good answers!

You may have noticed these messages under the question:

migration rejected / closed messages

How can it be off topic, you wonder? It's exactly the kind of question HSM is meant for. So, you head over to Meta and ask why this question is considered off topic.

It turns out that the question:

  1. is not off topic, but
  2. shouldn't have been migrated to the site in the first place.

Where's the content?

So where's the actual content? What happened to the original question and its answers?

In the "migration rejected" banner, do you see that link to history.stackexchange.com? Where do you think it goes? History.stackexchange.com?

Please. It goes to the revision history of the original question on history.stackexchange.com.

Once you're there, you don't want to return to the question you just came from, so click the link Return to Question.

Hooray! You've found the real content!

The closed question looks like a dead end with a bizarre message. The real question is still alive, but hard to find. That's not how Stack Exchange is supposed to work. What should we do instead?


1 Answer 1


The real problem here is the little circus that surrounded that question. It shouldn't have been migrated in the first place, and once it was migrated it should've just been left alone.

Since folks insisted on messing with it though, the only clean solution left is to just delete the mess left on HSM. Which I've done.

We should probably just automate such deletions.

  • 4
    The reason we made a "little circus" was because we wanted to set a precedent and keep it. We had to make it clear that migrating questions like this and in this matter would not be a good idea. I agree that the deletions should be automated, though.
    – HDE 226868
    May 9, 2015 at 1:22

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .