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I am currently not allowed to ask any questions in Physics SE. It is displayed on the ask page that I've reached my question limit. And a link is also displayed to a help centre page, from where I get to learn that my account has been blocked from asking questions as a few of my previous questions were not well received.

My question is, did I ask questions knowing that they will not be well received? How can anyone know whether the question he or she has will be well received? I can recall a few questions (like Why does Newton's Third Law actually work?) which received a huge number of up votes, but was later closed. If you see, an answer to this question has 143 votes, while the question itself has 74. Did the user know that he will receive such a huge number of votes? I find the question quite foolish, so I flagged it the moment I saw it.

Now, there are moderators and flagging processes that help keep off low quality posts or off topic questions from the SE sites, keeping them pure to the greatest extent possible. If such filtrations are already there, then why block an user from asking questions? What is the guarantee that after I be allowed to ask questions after 6 months, the question that I'll ask will be well received? Perhaps the question is important to me, but it's actually foolish in reality. How am I supposed to know what others think about my question?

It is not that I'm frustrated at it being able to ask any question, but please consider this. None of my questions were marked abusive or spam, so should I, or for that fact, any user be blocked just for asking low quality or off topic questions? If so, then perhaps I've to ask my questions to some astrologer first and seek advise on whether the question will be received well. This is not a correct and fair way a site should function.

I want a definite answer from Stack Exchange Community that whether they feel blocking users from asking questions will reduce the number of low quality posts. In that case, all new users should be blocked for at least a month, because they don't know rules of sites and ask the most off topic questions.

closed as off-topic by Catija, rene, PolyGeo, angussidney, Ward Jul 30 '17 at 3:12

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "This question pertains only to a specific site in the Stack Exchange Network. Questions on Meta Stack Exchange should pertain to our network or software that drives it as a whole, within the guidelines defined in the help center. You should ask this question on the meta site where your concern originated." – Catija, rene, angussidney
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • You need to address this on their meta site. The high-reputation users and diamond moderators are more able to explain why you've been banned from asking questions. – Catija Jul 29 '17 at 19:53
  • See, I find this is a problem not only in Physics SE, but with all SE sites in general. From a few discussions in Physics SE regarding this same topic, I learnt that this could be better answered here, so I posted this question here as a general one to all SE sites. – Wrichik Basu Jul 29 '17 at 19:56
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    So are you honestly arguing that we shouldn't prevent users who repeatedly submit poor-quality content to sites from doing so? Each site has a wealth of guidance on how to ask good questions and what is or is not on topic. If users refuse to utilize this content, why should the other users continue to have to waste their time closing or fixing the problem user's content? Stack Exchange expects a level of quality that other Q&A sites do not. – Catija Jul 29 '17 at 20:01
  • How will the user know that the question is off topic or low quality? Then why are flagging systems and moderation present? – Wrichik Basu Jul 29 '17 at 20:02
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    You have 7 visible questions on Physics.se of which 3 are closed as duplicates, one is closed as too broad. And the net score of all those question is zero (one is -2, one is +2, rest is 0). No one found it necessary to vote on your questions. That is not the kind of content the sites within the SE network are looking for. – rene Jul 29 '17 at 20:04
  • Won't the user notice their question being downvoted or closed? That should be an indication. – Modus Tollens Jul 29 '17 at 20:04
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    The only way you get question banned is by repeatedly posting bad content. If you do it once or twice and make no effort to improve despite the existence of helpful information on the site and its meta, that's your problem, not ours. The ban gives you the time to either fix your existing content or learn from your mistakes for future content when the ban is removed. – Catija Jul 29 '17 at 20:07
  • @rene so why isn't a warning put up on the SE ask pages that this site is not for ordinary questions, but only for extraordinary ones? – Wrichik Basu Jul 29 '17 at 20:08
  • @Catija I support the fact that users should be banned, but why don't you baby users who post spam questions only? How is the person asking the question going to know that the question is low quality? If a person from post doc on quantum sees a question from a 15 year old child (say), he'll always feel that its low quality. – Wrichik Basu Jul 29 '17 at 20:11
  • @Modus Tollens couldn't understand what you're saying. – Wrichik Basu Jul 29 '17 at 20:12
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    There is a complete Help center on each site. We assume people read that. This is not kindergarten where our users are spoon fed. And when you asked your first question you were put through this text which YOU had to tick off at the end. Don't tell me you weren't warned before you asked. – rene Jul 29 '17 at 20:14
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    It is constantly given. All the post notices on the closed questions point to the help center and you are active on meta so it can't be a surprise you can go there for assistance – rene Jul 29 '17 at 20:29
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    We know that we need work on teaching new users how the site works. It's one of the top concerns. But removing the ban is not a good solution. meta.stackexchange.com/a/285903/284336 – Catija Jul 29 '17 at 20:30
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    @WrichikBasu You're getting this all so wrong. What you need to understand (but seemingly don't want to understand): you have the tools to get unbanned. Edit deleted or closed question. Get them reopened. Get unbanned. – Modus Tollens Jul 29 '17 at 20:31
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    Why would we close the question as spam? It's not spam. That word means something different on SE. – Catija Jul 29 '17 at 20:36
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Question bans exist to prevent (or at least make it harder) for those who show a complete and continuous disregard for the rules from asking questions.

These users are unlikely to suddenly start following the rules if we just keep letting them ask questions, so it just seems better to prevent them from doing that either for some time or until they show that they can make useful contributions.


Questions can (and do) get downvoted simply because a small number of experts don't think it's a useful question (which is highly subjective), despite it being perfect in every other way (and potentially useful to many others), and asking a few such questions can lead to a ban, but no-one said it was a perfect system... The best you can do is make sure your questions are "perfect in every other way" (what might be relevant to you is how much research you put in before asking a question).


Do you have some deleted questions as well? Because getting a ban from 7 questions with only 1 of them downvoted and closed as non-duplicate (duplicates are notoriously hard to find...) and plenty of upvoted answers seems ... wrong.

  • The net score of their visible questions is zero with more then 50% closed. That seems about right for a Q-ban. Answers are NOT taken into account for the question ban. So they probably can still answer questions. – rene Jul 29 '17 at 20:26
  • I don't think answers come into the equation... it's a question ban. The OP can probably post answers. – Catija Jul 29 '17 at 20:27
  • @Catija Well, you can get rid of a question ban by posting good answers, so it stands to reason you should be able to avoid a question ban in the same way. If it doesn't currently work like this, shouldn't it (at least for somewhat borderline cases)? – Dukeling Jul 29 '17 at 20:30
  • @Dukeling it is a common misconception that answers matter in a Q-ban case. It really doesn't. – rene Jul 29 '17 at 20:31
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    No. The ability to write good answers doesn't relate to being able to ask good questions. – Catija Jul 29 '17 at 20:33
  • @Dukeling might but I'm sure both Oded, Animuson and Shog9 have said answers don't matter. Funny enough that sentence isn't on MSO: meta.stackoverflow.com/a/255584/578411 – rene Jul 29 '17 at 20:38
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My question is, did I ask questions knowing that they will not be well received? How can anyone know whether the question he or she has will be well received?

The system knows based on an algorithm. This algorithm of course is not displayed so users don't try anything to bypass the parameters (basically edging the limits). You should know since you have three duplicates and a question closed as too broad. Dupes, you should really try to avoid them more (try Googling deeper) but a too broad question shows your lack of understanding of the scope of the site.

Now, there are moderators and flagging processes that help keep off low quality posts or off topic questions from the SE sites, keeping them pure to the greatest extent possible. If such filtrations are already there, then why block an user from asking questions?

You have a very small amount of moderators and only a finite amount of users. We can't just keeping on flagging, closing, and editing posts for people. If they can't get a grasp of the site after a while, they should sit out for a while to see what they did wrong and fix it. It's the OP's responsibility to make sure their post is of good quality and on topic, not ours. That's why our moderating actions usually have negative impacts on the OP (exception is upvoting).

What is the guarantee that after I be allowed to ask questions after 6 months, the question that I'll ask will be well received? Perhaps the question is important to me, but it's actually foolish in reality. How am I supposed to know what others think about my question?

You decide. One must try to make the best of their post so others will receive it in a good light. This is not a make a post and we'll polish it type site. We expect the post to be of good quality and following all rules. If you read the rules and crafted your question appropriately, it should be well received. Nothing is definite though you can improve your chances.

I want a definite answer from Stack Exchange Community that whether they feel blocking users from asking questions will reduce the number of low quality posts. In that case, all new users should be blocked for at least a month, because they don't know rules of sites and ask the most off topic questions.

Blocking users to reduce quality is great. Blocking new users... not really. Why do I say that? If they get a question ban, they're not new. They have been exposed multiple times to SE's environment and society and most importantly, its rules. We assume that you have read the rules and if you break them all the time, take a break. With new users, they might be confused the first, second, or even third time. This is why users add comments to guide these new users to the right way.


I was question banned in Stack Overflow during my first few weeks. But following the guidance of the users and relevant Help Center articles, I was able to break my ban after a half year. Why is this relevant here? Because from "banned" user to another, at the end of the day, it all comes down to the rules: follow them and you should be fine or break them and after a while, you will be smashed by a ban or two.

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