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Why do some off-topic questions get closed, and some don't?

How is this question related to programming?

I thought Stack Overflow was a website for posting questions that related to programming. As far as I know, the FAQ says that too:

Chatty, open-ended questions diminish the usefulness of our site and push other questions off the front page.

My previous question was closed for the same reason.

Though my question is not a programming question, I would really like to know why that question garnered over 100 votes.

I am asking this question just to know that reason.

Forgive me and explain the reason if my question is absurd.

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    The question you link to is from 2009, when people were more relaxed. – Gareth Rees Jul 20 '11 at 15:34
  • I don't see any closed questions in your profile. Did you delete the one you're talking about? – Pops Jul 20 '11 at 15:39
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    @Gareth - As the asker of the question, I would say it has more to do with the lack of other sites where open-ended, subjective questions were allowed at the time that the question was asked. Back in the day, some subjective questions were considered appropriate for SO. I still think it's a good question, scoped to software engineering, but probably more appropriate to programmers.stackexchange.com than stackoverflow.com today. I'll also note that it was tagged "polls" as was the accepted practice back then for such questions. – tvanfosson Jul 20 '11 at 15:42
  • @Popular Demand Yesterday i asked "How to delete my google+ account?" they closed it. I agree that is not related to programming. But i asked it since i cant find any answers in net and I saw some person got answers when they asked about their mobile phone. Today noon only, I realized that those mobile phone questions are related to programming in some way. then i realized my mistake – EAGER_STUDENT Jul 20 '11 at 15:45
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    You could try Web Apps Stack Exchange... it's pretty much identical to Stack Overflow except the topic is webapps. Also I'm guessing that your question wasn't just closed, but also deleted; they're not the same thing, here. Would need a 10k SO user to verify. – Pops Jul 20 '11 at 15:51
  • Looks like the mods missed one. Thanks for pointing that out. Would this have made things more clear? – Cody Gray Jul 20 '11 at 15:56
  • @Popular Demand Could I know the difference between deleting the question and closing it...And when I am posting the question for deleting the google+ account I got the message "It does not meet our quality standards." How do they check the question before typing itself. – EAGER_STUDENT Jul 20 '11 at 16:00
  • Instead of answering you here, I'll point you to three entries in the big FAQ: What are closed questions?; What are deleted questions?; and What can I do when getting “It does not meet our quality standards”? – Pops Jul 20 '11 at 16:08
  • @Popular Demand great thank you. this proves search and surfing is more important than simply asking – EAGER_STUDENT Jul 20 '11 at 16:10
  • @EAGER_STUDENT: FYI: webapps.stackexchange.com/questions/16774/how-do-i-leave-google – ale Jul 20 '11 at 17:57

This is an old question that has been "grandfathered" in as an exception. Posting a question like this today would cause a quick close.


I added the "historical significance" notice to the question, following the precedent set on other similar questions:

This question exists because it has historical significance, but it is not considered a good, on-topic question for this site, so please do not use it as evidence that you can ask similar questions here.

More info: https://stackoverflow.com/faq

See also:

  • I moved it to the bottom of the question... chat.stackexchange.com/transcript/message/1393621#1393621 – user1228 Jul 20 '11 at 16:46
  • I can't read that chat transcript for some reason (404), but that's fine with me. Probably ought to be consistent though. – Nicole Jul 20 '11 at 17:30
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    Sorry about that, its a mod-only room. My bad. Thought you were cool. Anyhow, essentially the word on high is that the message interferes with the digest version of the question, squeezing out the content in favor of the warning. Placing the warning at the bottom prevents this from happening. – user1228 Jul 20 '11 at 18:04

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