Question 77283401 was closed as

This question does not appear to be about programming within the scope defined in the help center.

because 2 people voted "belongs on superuser.com" and 1 person voted "Not about programming or software development"

Why was it closed as the latter with 1 vote, when the former has 2 votes?


1 Answer 1


See this Q&A for more info: How does the system determine which one close reason should be displayed on a closed question, given the close votes?

SO requires only 3 votes to close a question (instead of the default threshold of 5) – but for migrations, a unanimous consensus of all three close voters is required on SO for the question to be migrated. (On most sites, only a simple majority of close votes have to be for migration for it to occur.)

So in this case, the question got enough votes to be closed, but not enough to be migrated. As a result, all the migration votes were converted into generic off-topic close votes, as mentioned in the linked answer:

If the process gets to this point without the question being migrated, [...] all migration votes are converted into generic off-topic votes, and this process continues. [...]

And since there weren't at least 2 votes for the same canned off-topic close reason, the "Closed" banner just shows the generic "off-topic" close reason:

If there are not enough votes for any canned reason to be selected (excluding generic votes), the generic "off-topic" reason will be shown [...].

  • Most of your answer makes sense; thanks for clarifying it, as my post there is rather jargon-y! However, I don't believe your last paragraph is correct - two votes are always required for a canned reason to show, even on sites only requiring three votes to close questions. The notice in this question is the generic off-topic notice, and doesn't have a canned reason. Oct 12, 2023 at 20:58
  • @SonictheAnonymousHedgehog: Ah, good catch. I'll edit my post.
    – V2Blast
    Oct 12, 2023 at 21:01
  • 2
    Here's a source for that info. Oct 12, 2023 at 21:01
  • 4
    Also, for context as to why SO requires unanimous agreement to migrate: back when it required five votes to close a question, there was a site-specific override in place where 4 out of 5 voters had to vote to migrate, instead of a simple majority as on other sites. When the required votes to close was reduced to three, this cascaded down. On other sites requiring three votes to close a question, the simple majority rule was continued. Oct 12, 2023 at 21:53
  • 4
    Regarding what @SonictheAnonymousHedgehog is saying, I think there has been some discussion amongst SO peeps about lowering the migration threshold to 2, much like the other sites but I don't know whether that's reached the level of being discussed on MSO yet or not. If the consensus is to change it, it's a very quick 1-minute change that any CM can make - but we're not going to do it without such discussion happening first.
    – Catija
    Oct 13, 2023 at 13:48
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    @Catija Yep, that would still be consistent with the older system, as that's also unanimous minus one vote like before. I'm not familiar with any such discussions, but if it does end up happening, it'd be nice if someone could let me know so I could update my answer linked here. Oct 13, 2023 at 15:41

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