Can we have a vote-to-close option such as "Bidding Request"? It could even be broadened for homework requests and "can you do my job for me" requests.

To be specific, there are plenty of times people post with good intentions but under a lot of stress. They throw out a giant block of code and say "I can't figure out why it won't work!" These are frustrating and maybe worth of closing, but not what I have in mind.

Specifically I get REALLY f'in angry when people post vague feature requests, schematics, or in the case of homework questions, they actually copy and paste the assignment including the teacher's instructions like "remember to put your name in the corner" type stuff. And then the SO closes with "Thanks!" or "Much appreciated" or something else that implies they are "down" or even polite.

I don't like being treated like a waiter or a valet driver. I don't like being condescended to, and I don't like the idea of SO getting some rep as a place where programmers do free bitch-work for points.

FYI, I also don't consider this the same issue as "Let Me Google that For You" or RTFM. There are plenty of times I've read the manual or Googled and just needed someone to explain it to me better via a forum. This is about closing questions that are really just work requests and which treat the site like a code farm.


Do you think that the Stack Exchange design/framework would actually be good for a freelance bidding board? I know that the e-commerce angle is not readily built in, but the overall aesthetic and reputations scores might be more conducive to attracting the right crowd then most sites I've seen.

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    can you update this post with specific examples please. URL it up baby. – Jeff Atwood Feb 9 '10 at 11:29
  • The one that set me off has been purged. Do these types of blatant requests get closed as spam? The one I saw was someone who wanted an auto-fill thing for some location form. – Anthony Feb 9 '10 at 11:47
  • i'll find others if I can. the one with the teacher's comments I actually fixed up just to make it less hideous, so I may be able to find it. – Anthony Feb 9 '10 at 11:48
  • They shouldn't. They are not spam. meta.stackexchange.com/questions/5018/describing-close-reasons "This question is an overt commercial, promotion, or advertisement for a product or service.". If you see such questions closed as spam I would flag them for a mod – Thomas Bonini Feb 9 '10 at 11:51
  • Oh NVM, I realized since it was closed that fast they must have retracted after seeing the negative feedback. but not before I could vote to close it as BS! – Anthony Feb 9 '10 at 12:09
  • Sorry, not "Closed", removed, gone. – Anthony Feb 9 '10 at 12:10
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    You're asking two questions, split it. – random Feb 9 '10 at 12:13

I don't see what's your problem. If it's a "paste the code plz" question and you don't want to answer, DON'T ANSWER.

Why would you want to prevent other people - willing to help even with these sort of questions - from answering? What good would it serve? The asker gets his or her answer, the answerer wants to answer (otherwise they wouldn't), and you are not forced to do anything.

Everyone wins.

I don't like the idea of SO getting some rep as a place where programmers do free bitch-work for points

Don't worry about other people's rep. Anyways the situation you described happens very rarely.

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    @Koper - he's not worry about other people's rep on Stack Overflow, he's worrying about the site's reputation. – Dominic Rodger Feb 9 '10 at 11:37
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    I'm about to pass out, but I'll find some examples later. I think they may be getting removed as spam. Basically I will probably vote to close such a question anyway as "not a real question" but would prefer something more like "we don't do free work" as an option because it would fit better and because people would see that was the reason it was closed. – Anthony Feb 9 '10 at 11:45
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    @Dominic - thank you, exactly. – Anthony Feb 9 '10 at 11:46
  • Oh, I totally misread, sorry. But then I don't understand why it's bad reputation. Sometimes people just urgently need code; what's wrong with providing it? If there was a large number of these kind of questions then I would agree, but they are a minority (I'd say less than 1%). I say let's worry about the problem when it becomes one. – Thomas Bonini Feb 9 '10 at 11:49
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    It's not just about the sites reputation, it's about closing a question with a reason that says "No, we don't do that." If the question stays open and people give answers, that's cool, too. I just want a better choice when I vote to close. It's about satisfying my need to tell someone "Bad! No!" because those types of questions make me feel a tad used, even if I don't answer. – Anthony Feb 9 '10 at 12:13
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    The way to do that is downvoting, not closing. If you close it people can no longer give answers. – Thomas Bonini Feb 9 '10 at 12:20

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