Once every few weeks, I encounter a proposal on Area 51 that is obviously DOA. The proposal's scope is often nonsensical, overly broad, horrendously narrow, and/or covered well by existing sites on the network, and sample questions (if any are included) tend to be very unclear, overly broad, opinion-based, and or rhetorical themselves.
To be clear, I'm not talking about proposals that arguably need a little more attention in order to get back on track. I'm talking about proposals that are literally nowhere close to viable. The proposals might look like this (these are not actual proposals I've seen, but similar in style to the ones I am talking about):
- Johnson Memorial High School After-School Activities
- Java Error Messages
- Python on the Mac
- Chinese Take-Out Restaurants in Western Des Moines
- Blowing up Buildings with Dynamite
What should I do when I see something like this?
- Should I flag it?
- Should I leave it to the automated closure bots?
- Should I downvote and closevote all of the included questions?
- Should I start a discussion on Area 51 Discussion Zone?
In other words, does the community have a role or responsibility in helping to keep Area 51 clear of blatantly nonviable proposals, or is this solely the responsibility of diamond moderators and scripts? If the community does have a role, what is it?
In response to fbueckert's question, they do not usually meet the new proposal requirements. They typically gather only one or two additional followers and two or three questions. The question is whether I should wait for the new proposal culling scripts to run (or a moderator to happen to walk by) or whether I should say "There's no way it could make it" and take immediate action.