Currently it shows like this (a recent example)

closed as "not programming related" by RSolberg, Tim J, Rob Kennedy, Paul Alexander, Michael Petrotta an hour ago

How about it would show like this.

closed as "not programming related" by RSolberg, Tim J and as "not a real question" by Rob Kennedy, Paul Alexander, Michael Petrotta an hour ago

Or like this.

Closed as:
"not programming related" by RSolberg, Tim J
"not a real question" by Rob Kennedy, Paul Alexander, Michael Petrotta
an hour ago


6 Answers 6


I think this would both clutter up the close-message, and lead to annoyed people wondering why Rob thought their question was not a "real question", when everyone else though it wasn't programming related..

This might happen because a user accidently clicked the wrong close message (example) - it gets averaged out and prevents arguments, I'd say..

  • 2
    We wouldnt have this problem if the closers left comments as to the reason - which is why this is actually coming up! Commented Dec 11, 2009 at 18:36

The current method spreads false information. It claims that all close votes were unanimously for a particular option - this is clearly not the case. In a recent question, I voted to close as "belongs on superuser.com," whereas the majority voted "not programming related." When the question was finally closed, it claimed that I, along with the others, voted to close because it was "not programming related." That is false.

  • 4
    In the opposite case, I just closed this question, which had 3 votes for "not a real question" but I closed it as "off topic", which resulted in "closed as off topic by X, Y, Z, and Kevin". That's THREE falsehoods! Commented Jun 16, 2011 at 21:17

I like the idea -- it provides full disclosure -- but would prefer to have it handled with a hover effect instead of expanding the close message. See this feature request.

  • Aye i think it's a better implementation than i suggested. Since there are many features that employ a hover effect. Commented Jul 5, 2009 at 13:27

Maybe the word 'mostly' could be inserted if there's more than one close reason given.

(deliberately naive code follows...)

If (NumberOfCloseReasons > 1) {
  Message = "Closed as mostly " + MainCloseReason + " by " + ListAllClosers();
} else {
  Message = "Closed as " + MainCloseReason + " by " + ListAllClosers();

That would mostly avoid the problem of visual clutter and overcome the 'incorrectness' of the current approach.


I would say even remove the reason from everyone except the moderators. In fact, there should be a way for moderators to filter by close reason to allow them to permanently delete or move questions that just don't belong and add 0 value to Stack Overflow.

  • 4
    i think showing a reason is helpful to the asker, if the intent is that they learn to get better at asking questions. Also, a casual passerby can see the closed questions, see the reasons why they were closed, and learn from that example. Commented Aug 24, 2009 at 1:30

Does this extra information really add any value? IMHO it doesn't. Nearly all the time there's consensus on the reason too.

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