With recent changes to the closing system, there is also a new interface for moderators to change and create site-specific close reasons. This is generally great, since it allows us to set different texts for the flag/vote-to-close dialogue, for the questions author, and for experienced users. However, there is some confusing parts about it too.

Since changing close reasons requires two moderators, it is not so easy to repair mistakes here and therefore it is important that things are clear from the start.

This question is for collecting these issues. To keep things structured, please post one answer per issue.

5 Answers 5


The template for Post owner guidance¹ contains [edit the question](edit), however, this magic link does not work when used in a close reason and neither does [edit].

At the very least, the template needs to be improved to avoid broken links in close reasons.

However, a working magic link for editing would be even better. This at least somewhat prevents the common problem of post owners providing missing information or similar in the comments, when they should have edited.

¹ should be Post-owner guidance, by the way

  • 3
    I'm not sure if this is a bug or not... Shog definitely confirmed that it's not possible. It'd be interesting to at least know why this magic link can't be used. The network-wide reasons do include an edit link but the community-specific ones do not, so we do need a way to achieve this.
    – Catija
    Apr 21, 2020 at 21:16
  • @Catija: Shog definitely confirmed that it's not possible. – Do the same constraints still apply after the close system was overhauled?
    – Wrzlprmft
    Apr 21, 2020 at 21:38
  • 1
    Dunno! :) We'll find out.
    – Catija
    Apr 21, 2020 at 21:41

The section close description should in most cases look like this:

Closed. {{specific explanation}} This question is currently not accepting answers.

In particular the beginning (“Closed.”) and end (“This question is currently not accepting answers.”) need to be part of the custom text. However, the template text does not contain these elements and it is not part of the guidance either.


When you reactivate a close reason, the dialogue suggests that it will be live instantly, but it still needs the approval of another moderator.


When a moderator has suggested a custom close reason, another moderator has to approve it. While a close reason is waiting for approval, all moderators can edit it. This is generally good, since it allows for collaborative editing and checking without having to copy-and-paste stuff from a moderator chatroom (and the potential errors that come with that). However, the interface does not tell you anything about this beforehand.

  • 2
    If the second mod edits the existing suggestion does it require further approval?
    – Catija
    Apr 21, 2020 at 20:19
  • 1
    @Catija: We did not test that. We only tested a reason created by Mod A, edited by Mod B, edited by Mod C, edited by Mod A, and then approved by Mod C.
    – Wrzlprmft
    Apr 21, 2020 at 20:38

It does not seem possible to retract a suggestion. This is rarely needed because you do not suggest a close reason just like that and you can edit suggestions. However it can happen if you have two alternative suggestions up for discussion or similar.

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