The canned text for closing a too broad question says

There are either too many possible answers, or good answers would be too long for this format. Please add details to narrow the answer set or to isolate an issue that can be answered in a few paragraphs.

When I see a broad question which has absolutely no chance of staying open, I close, and always leave a comment trying to make clear why the question is not suited to the site, sometimes suggesting other sources for the information. And still, first time users will frequently go with the meaning of the canned text, come back to make senseless edits, and expect the question to get reopened. And I understand them, because this is what this large official looking blurb told them to do. It also of course sits on top of all the comments, so it is read before the comment.

Is there a way to prevent this from happening? Maybe allow closers to choose a shorter version of the canned text, which does not suggest that they are expected to edit?

This situation occurred today, What foods are safe to leave in the car over a long period of time?, and I've seen it arise several times before.


I have seen that question too. I think the edit was just an answer to the first comment of Stephie, stating it is a permanent move.

I think the canned text is clear enough. It clearly states:

If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

(emphasis mine)

So this clearly asks OP to do three things:

  • Read the rules in the help center;
  • Evaluate if the question fit the rules;
  • If so: edit. If not: leave it.

There isn't anything to do to make this more clear, and some users keep trying to by-pass the system. I see it on SO every day. Nothing you as a moderator can do about that. You comments do get read, trust me. They are not always following your advise, or that of the canned message. That isn't the message's fault.

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