Let moderators offer a protection status visa to certain questions under constant non-answer fire.

Much like Wikipedia, this would allow users above a certain level of reputation (but at what level?) to be able to continue on answering/editing questions, which would normally have been locked.

When a question is seedy enough to glue the eyes of spammers, they flock and post all sorts of spam-answers. Then there are those that attract bees buzzing, "Me too!" and "Thnks! Had same problem, your solution worked" comment-answers again and again.

While these may be a good way to break in a new mod in deleting these flurry of non-answers, they also tend to find themselves under the locked status as the only recourse from the spam and noise.

Unfortunately, when a moderator locks a question, no further actions (apart from flagging) are allowed.

Should this be part of the arsenal of moderation happy fun janitorial tools for 10k users? Something for the quiet 5k level perhaps?

This isn't to overturn what it means to lock a question, but to keep those good on-topic questions (which unfortunately happen to play a siren song what draws out the non-answers) from being frozen out of generating the votes and ever burgeoning field of real answers and helpful edits.

  • 1
    one more point: should a post on a protected page allow editing by its owner? that is, if an asker or an answerer is below the 5k (or whatever) bar for participation in a protected question, but it's their post, shouldn't they be able to edit it? Commented May 5, 2010 at 6:14
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    The bar should probably be around 100 rep to be able to answer/edit a protected question. @qua
    – random
    Commented May 5, 2010 at 6:18
  • Spaminated....? Commented May 5, 2010 at 6:22
  • @random: ah, i misread; you're suggesting 5k/10k as a level where users get the ability to vote to protect, similar to gaining the vote to close at 3k. yes? and 100 rep as the bar to get past the protection and post/edit/whatever? (that seems.... low.) Commented May 5, 2010 at 6:47
  • For those at 5k, the ability to vote to protect, which is a soft-lock, would be something to have. But it's rare for a user to be at 100 rep and still not know to not post non-answers. They're usually dealt with by then. @qua
    – random
    Commented May 5, 2010 at 6:53
  • ok, i can see that. if we make post-to-protected a 100-rep ability can we increase create-new-tags to, oh, 250 or so? :) @ran Commented May 5, 2010 at 6:56
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    A list of questions you can use the new shiny on: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/34464/… Commented Jun 7, 2010 at 7:16
  • That "protected by Jeff Atwood ♦" looks awesome :o)
    – user138231
    Commented Jun 7, 2010 at 14:28
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    Jeff Atwood: knight of the realm, defender of the soil, protector of questions -- yeah, that has a nice ring to it.
    – mmyers
    Commented Jun 7, 2010 at 14:46
  • As proposed by @quack quixote, above, I feel that any post should be editable by its owner. If for no other reason, then to allow him to better clarify his statement should others have difficulty understanding it due to ambiguity.
    – Dylon
    Commented Sep 24, 2011 at 17:41

3 Answers 3


This is completed, but we may tweak thresholds a bit, depending on how it does.

For more detail see:


I like it.

I think that the level of reputation should be configurable with three options: 1k, 5k and 10k. The default level is 1k, and moderators can up the required reputation as they deem necessary.

Posts with this status should only be able to be edited, retagged, closed and deleted by users with enough reputation. Voting should not be affected.

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    Protected questions under this scheme would normally be fine, but they're just unlucky in drawing out sooooo many spam-answers and me-too type answers, that taking away future votes would be unfair.
    – random
    Commented May 5, 2010 at 6:21

You have my support, though the spammy kind of questions don't need a high threshold.

Spammers normally don't gather a lot of rep (if any), so the rep limit of 100 which is also used for downvotes and editing CW questions is reasonable enough.

This only has to be used on questions that currently have 2k+ views, while this may change in the future. In Super User's case moderators could simply 'flip a switch' manually, since there aren't that many questions that draw these amounts of spam.

That way only questions that do attract a lot of spam have to be 'soft-locked' or 'rep-barred' and not everyone popular question.


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