Currently, the system is largely in favor of voting to close a question, rather than leaving it open, for two main reasons:
- There is a "close" button on question posts, but no "leave open" directly available. If you feel a question must be left open, you need to go to the review queue (this is apparently "by design" - see this old post, but it is not explained why).
- There is no way to see the number of "leave open" votes cast, but you can see the number of "close" votes (see this other post).
The problem is, I often see questions that are initially wrongly formulated and look like off-topic question (typically, let's say, a shopping question - I'm primarily active on the electrical engineering site - that looks like "what chip would do [this thing I need]"). After a few close votes and a few comments indicating it's off-topic, OP edits the post and states he doesn't need a specific IC, but is interested in knowing, more generally, "how can I achieve [this thing I need]". Not off-topic anymore.
Then, from the review queue, users see that close votes have already been cast, read the post too quickly (being biased by the information shown), and cast additional votes and it gets closed. Really. They do that. And I want to scream "read carefully, it's not off-topic anymore"!
Leaving a comment does not work. I tried it a few times, it gets buried, and, if there were already a few comments posted, it is not even shown by default.
The most consistent way to solve this would probably be to show a "leave open" button at the bottom of posts for which there are close votes, and indicate the number "leave open" votes cast, like for "close". This would make the reviewers stop a bit before clicking "close", since there is not a single obvious path to follow anymore.
But maybe there are other ways, like clearly indicating that the post has been edited after close votes have started being cast.
How could we better balance "leave open" and "close" voting?