I've been working on a project to update some of our Community Specific closure reasons on Stack Overflow.

In my research, I've been looking network wide at our various community's closure reasons. I've noticed the usage of what appear to be replacement strings in the markdown for the community specific reasons.

For example, here on MSE this close reason:

This question does not appear to be about the software that powers the Stack Exchange network, within the scope defined in the help center

appears to be written with the following markdown (SEDE MSE query)

This question does not appear to be about $Topic, within the scope defined in the [help].

I know that [help] becomes help center because of the comment formatting rules. I was wondering about $Topic which becomes "the software that powers the Stack Exchange network".

I knew of $SiteName and that it is used in many help center documents and tours. Stack Overflow uses it in several closure reasons (SEDE SO query). I also know you can search the help center with $SiteName and it will give you results that match the current site's name. But I was unaware that there were more available.

Is a complete list of these replacement strings documented somewhere? Is there a way to know what the values of these replacement strings will be for a given site?

  • 3
    Those who have access to Transifex for translating text on localized SO can see many placeholders (but not the value) like $siteName$, $topic$, $DaysSinceLastQuestion$, etc., though it's unclear which one can be used on close reason. Searching for transifex on MSE may give some hints, like 1, 2, 3, 4. Commented May 15, 2022 at 4:06
  • Very relevant: What variables are available to use when editing Help Center pages?
    – V2Blast
    Commented May 17, 2022 at 14:54
  • Thank you @V2Blast that was exactly the kind of thing I was looking for! Are all of those also available in the close dialogues? And also (still) is there any way to know what the value will be replaced to? Commented May 17, 2022 at 14:56
  • 1
    @HenryEcker: The things that the placeholders/variables correspond to might be listed somewhere in SEDE. I'm not actually sure whether they're all usable in close reasons as well (though I imagine most of them would not be relevant anyway). The $Topic one definitely is, since that's what is used here on MSE (as you point out) – it's also how the default community-specific close reason is formatted, on sites that don't have custom close reasons added yet.
    – V2Blast
    Commented May 17, 2022 at 15:00


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