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Screenshot of the "step 2: Review your question" box when submitting a question

The steps to publish used to be:

  1. Write question
  2. Hit publish

Now the process is:

  1. Write question
  2. Hit "Review"
  3. Get bounced back to the top of the page
  4. Scroll back down to the bottom of the page
  5. Hit the button again. Page gets published

Is there a way to skip the review step?

I'm not sure whether this is a feature-request or support question, as I don't know whether the option exists to remove this step.

Some proposals to improve the situation:

  1. Make it clearer that you're on a different step. This could be as simple as drawing a border around the text or changing the background colour. I'm not a design person, but it wasn't until I started thinking about writing this post that I figured out there was a 2-step process, I just thought it kind of stuffed up the first time you press publish.
  2. CertainPerformance linked a similar question ("Post Question" button higher up on the page) that proposed a solution which would make it easier to avoid "Step 4" by putting the button into an area where the user gets bounced to when they hit publish.
  3. Remove it? We get plenty of feedback from the community when we post a bad question. Does a question need to be right the first time? And if it's not, will this feature help?
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    Similar to this. Given the sheer amount of horribly formatted questions, I [prefer it the way it is now]. Some still ignore it [the review step] and don't look at the preview, but if they were able to instantly post the question instead of having to go over it again, things would be even worse – CertainPerformance Apr 25 '20 at 1:44
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    If anything, I'd like question authors to be asked to look more closely at the question preview to make sure it looks good and is displayed as well as they can make it. The automated checks help a bit, but getting users to review the question preview themselves would help more. meta.stackoverflow.com/q/295683 – CertainPerformance Apr 25 '20 at 1:47
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    Feel free to edit the body of the question if this really is a feature request. As-is, you're asking how to do it, not making an argument for a new feature to allow this. – Catija ModStaff Apr 25 '20 at 1:48
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    @CertainPerformance is there any data on whether this feature actually impacted question quality? – quant Apr 25 '20 at 1:49
  • yivi and Makoto asked for stats but didn't get a response – CertainPerformance Apr 25 '20 at 3:50
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    quant, despite having a fair amount of reputation you have 90+ questions with 0 or fewer upvotes and 22 answers equally bad, over 50%. That may not be "data which shows an impact on question quality" but it's an attempt to try something to help. You should propose an improvement to the feature rather than request elimination of it. --- I don't get a preview like that, I must double check and reread after posting. – Rob Apr 25 '20 at 4:02
  • @Rob thanks, I think? I've edited the post to provide some suggestions for improvement. – quant Apr 25 '20 at 8:12
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    Your question could (seems to) be a duplicate of these: meta.stackexchange.com/a/344684/282094 & meta.stackexchange.com/a/344569/282094 & especially this comment offers an answer (status-bydesign) from JNat. PS: Could still benefit from another edit, if you don't think that the first two links answer your question; hint: you could vote on those answers (Feedback) to the question (Announcement). – Rob Apr 25 '20 at 11:00
  • Specifically: How does Stack Exchange attempt to prevent low-quality Q&As?, The problem (for you) is that you are digging a large diameter hole which gets deeper as you continue to add Q&As which don't score enough upvotes (and a greater penalty for 0 or downvotes). IF you leave so many Q&As with a low score you'll reach the tipping point where you'll have to improve a hundred posts (possibly some deleted, which you can't) to save your account. So go fix 'em in the months ahead. – Rob Apr 26 '20 at 4:37
  • @LemmyX I wouldn't read too much into it. I think on these meta sites people just use votes to represent whether they agree or not. – quant Apr 26 '20 at 12:08
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    @Rob I think that link does somewhat answer my question, thanks – quant Apr 26 '20 at 12:10
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For the question:

Is there a way to skip the review step?

The answer is no. Can't really detail it more than that, it's just not feasible. The review step is here for all users.


For the part, my TLDR is: removing it is a terrible idea.

The first thing that strikes me as odd is this combination of sentences:

I've published dozens of questions and never found or looked for any useful feedback in the review step. [...] it wasn't until I started thinking about writing this post that I figured out there was a 2-step process.

So, yes, of course you didn't get anything for the review step before - it simply wasn't there! Except on Stack Overflow, under some conditions I'm not sure you met. The network-wide implementation is slightly more than a month old, and if I look at your SO user profile, you've only asked two questions in that period? Which is not a very useful sample to draw statistics ("that never helped me") from.

I just thought it kind of stuffed up the first time you press publish.

The design is consistent here: you don't press "Publish", you press "Review your question".

Remove it? We get plenty of feedback from the community when we post a bad question. Does a question need to be right the first time? And if it's not, will this feature help?

The ask question preview is supposed to reduce the amount of off-topic, badly formatted, no code provided etc questions that get asked every hour, if not any minute (on SO). The community may have the tools to edit those, but forgive me for saying, the author still has a responsibility to provide a question in the better shape it can be, for duck's sake.

The ask page aims to both decrease the amount of janitorial work by volunteers, who get tired of it at some point, and the friction that may ensue for users being asked to clarify, edit this or that, etc, etc. It's not perfect, and its aim is not to have the question "being right the first time", but it's certainly helpful and removing it would hurt.


Note that in the future, you may want your feature-requests to be backed by something more solid that "I don't like it, and it's not helpful for me". That may sound harsh, but removing, or allowing to disable, a feature that helps lots of folks just because it doesn't suit you is a no.

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  • Thanks this is a good answer. The last paragraph is also a strawman argument though - obviously if I thought this feature helped people I would support it. Given that the roll-out was staggered, is there comparative data on its usefulness / effects to support your argument? Surely we could measure the flags on questions before/after rollout of the feature? – quant Apr 25 '20 at 12:57
  • @quant "the bit that assumes I only post on SO" I don't, but I won't stalk your whole network profile, either :-) so I just took the first one (and Unix). As per statistics, see the comment CertainPerformance left you, and this blog post. Perhaps not the most definite stats you'd like to have, but definitely worth keeping an eye on for updates. – Jenayah Apr 25 '20 at 13:01
  • Then why assume I've only asked two questions? – quant Apr 25 '20 at 13:04
  • @quant I make it clear in the phrasing above that this is only for SO, but feel free to edit with a more accurate figure; it doesn't really change the point of this answer. – Jenayah Apr 25 '20 at 13:16
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    No it doesn't, and I do think it's a good answer. But it's a tad unkind to say I jumped to conclusions when I have in fact encountered this feature quite a lot, I'm just pointing out one of the premises of your question is incorrect and also tries to make it look like I'm being flippant, which I'm not. – quant Apr 25 '20 at 13:24
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    @quant then perhaps next time (or now), include an exact number/rough estimate to ensure people won't just look at your top 3 sites because they don't have time/motivation to stalk you network-wide :-) ties in nicely with the "back it up" footnote, as well. – Jenayah Apr 25 '20 at 13:28
  • I did include a rough estimate. – quant Apr 25 '20 at 13:31

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