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I was just writing a nice and long post to a question on meta. Just as I was finishing up, I saw the dreaded No more answers will be accepted banner appear. It was closed. So all that time was wasted drafting the answer due to the closure.

So I would suggest a notification when in the answer pane of new close votes when they happen. That way you can figure out if you're getting close. If you're a 250 rep user, show how many votes there are. If you're not, just show that the post is close to being closed, and to hurry up (perhaps at 4 close votes).

As it stands right now, it is a disincentive to write a good answer to a controversial or possibly duplicated post (which to newer members is hard to know).

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It is better not to answer a question that has any valid close votes. If it is not clear that the first 1 or 2 close votes are wrong, just move on and find a better question to answer.

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    True, though <3k users cannot see the pending close votes. (Auto-comments for possible duplicates aside.) And even the first votes might be cast while typing.
    – Arjan
    Commented Apr 19, 2011 at 14:36
  • @Arjan, maybe <3k users should be able to see the number of close votes Commented Apr 19, 2011 at 16:27
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As it stands right now, it is a disincentive to write a good answer to a controversial or possibly duplicated post (which to newer members is hard to know)

There should always be a disincentive to answer a duplicate post. Even if you have the best possible answer to a question, if the question's an exact duplicate of another, your answer should be going to the original question. I don't see the virtue in telling people to "hurry up" and post their answer so that they can farm some rep from a question that shouldn't be answered.

As for controversial posts, those posts are usually indicated by a balance of up/down votes, not close votes. If it's off topic, it shouldn't be answered and the disincentive makes sense.

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