I recently answered this question on Stack Overflow, and following my answer and some communication in the comments, the author deleted the question.

If I understand correctly, an author may not delete their question if the question has an answer with an upvote. If a person has put effort into an answer, why should author deletion privileges be dependent on another person finding and upvoting the answer?

  • 1
    Small note, I understand it's a bit confusing but we have two concepts - deletion and closure. The asker can delete the question but they can't really close it on their own. Your question has been one many have asked. There's a feature request, as an example, to require a waiting period between the answer being posted and the deletion being possible but, as of yet, we haven't done anything to address this.
    – Catija
    Feb 1, 2021 at 13:38
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    A small comfort is that if the question has no upvotes, and especially downvotes, deleting the question digs a hole called 'The Question Ban'. Once banned they'll need to undelete and Improve their question to become unbanned.
    – Rob
    Feb 1, 2021 at 14:58
  • 1
    From How to write a good answer: "Not all questions can or should be answered here. Save yourself some frustration and avoid trying to answer questions which..."
    – Rubén
    Feb 1, 2021 at 16:00

1 Answer 1


When a question gets an answer, but the answer isn't good, the system will allow the asker to delete the question. Why? Because as far as the system knows, nothing of value is lost.

The system has no way to know by itself if the answer is good or bad. The only way to "teach" the system if answer is good or bad is by voting, which is done by people.

When designed this way, the designers of the system (aka SO developers) probably didn't give much thought to edge cases like authors deleting the question quickly right after getting answer, this way not letting other users have enough time to vote. There is a pending feature request that suggests ways to solve this.

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