Possible Duplicate:
Need a better recourse against frivolous moderator action

I'm presuming that moderators can close questions at their sole discretion (as opposed to questions receiving multiple community votes to close the question). This indicates to me that the moderators need to be pretty dang certain that they are closing questions for the right reasons, and if there is any doubt - let the community decide.

Its pretty annoying that my question was closed as 'exact duplicate' when it in fact isn't. Doubly annoying on meta where the rules should be more relaxed, Triply annoying when said moderator doesn't respond to comments (and if I knew what came after triply I'd probably add some more)...

I'd still like a chance to discuss that proposal, and hear the counter arguments for it. (Which I am sure there must be, since I'm picking up some downvotes - presumably from people that disagree but can't express it in any other way than adding a downvote.)

Oh and yes, I realize this isn't a question - just a rant. But I have no idea where else to put this.

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    quadruply comes after triply. and quintuply after that. and sextuply after that. notice a pattern yet? May 13, 2010 at 11:30
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    -1: I am sure there are duplicates of why/how moderators close questions, too.
    – IAbstract
    May 13, 2010 at 12:20
  • I made real progress here ;) meta.stackexchange.com/questions/49446/…
    – dbasnett
    May 13, 2010 at 13:51

2 Answers 2


The community can decide, even when a mod closes the question. It still takes but five reopen votes to get the question back.

Currently, your question stands at zero reopen votes. Thus, the community appears (for now) to agree with random's closure.


Your question may not be an exact duplicate, but I think it suffers from the same flaw as the original, making it an effective duplicate. The flaw is that it places too much emphasis on SO reputation, or in this case badges. Having a lot of reputation and badges on SO certainly means something, but the opposite isn't true. Not having these things means nothing. As far as I know, Josh Bloch doesn't have a gold Java badge, but I would be pretty horrified if I found out people were taking my advice instead of his. My vote shouldn't count for more than that of someone who is unknown to SO, even on tags where I'm a purported expert.

In short, you can use reputation and badges to make informed decisions about who you want to listen to, but I don't think the system should try to automatically infer anything from them. They're just not that reliable an indicator. (As far as voting is concerned. Of course this doesn't apply to retagging, editing, and the various other SO-specific privileges you earn through reputation.)

As for this question, we do generally defer to the community vote in borderline cases. If I'm unsure whether a question should be closed or opened, I'll wait at least until I can cast the 5th vote, that way my vote carries the same weight as everyone else. However, we were given the ability to close with a single vote, and we will use it if something is a clear duplicate.

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    Indeed. To a certain extent rep just measures how active you are on the site. An inactive expert will always have less rep than an active novice (unless the novice was giving particularly bad answers).
    – ChrisF Mod
    May 13, 2010 at 12:41
  • Then maybe the answer is to allow Josh Bloch to nominate himself as an expert in Java from day 1, regardless of his reputation? I only suggested that this should be a feature that is unlocked when reaching (eg) 1,000 rep (much like other features that are rep locked). Thanks for your comments, appreciated.
    – PaulG
    May 13, 2010 at 13:34
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    What's the benefit of complicating the system to give microcelebrities more power than everyone else? Who's to say some guy none of us ever heard of toiling away in his garage isn't the next Gosling or Hejlsberg? Why should his votes have less weight than theirs? (And anyone can be wrong occasionally.) I prefer the flat vote weight: It democratizes the Trilogy.
    – John Rudy
    May 13, 2010 at 13:38
  • @Zombie Nixon. I dont understand your point. I can only presume its because I havent explained something sufficiently. In summary the system would allow anyone to nominate themselves as an expert in five particular tags, which then means their votes in those tags award 1.5 points.
    – PaulG
    May 13, 2010 at 14:57
  • @PaulG: I nominate myself an expert in java, ada, c++, lisp and scheme. See an issue? :) (Check my SO profile for why that might not be appropriate ... )
    – John Rudy
    May 13, 2010 at 17:34
  • For sure you could misuse it, much like I can upvote wrong answers, or answers that I know nothing about. I dont think the misuse could create abuse though. And the scheme does have benefits, such as helping alleviate the fastest gun problem, and bringing great justice to those ejeets that somehow manage to get upvotes for well presented wrong answers.
    – PaulG
    May 13, 2010 at 17:49
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    (..and again - I feel frustration at having this discussion via comments against an unrelated question. Grr @random)
    – PaulG
    May 13, 2010 at 17:51

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