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This question is prompted by some of the discussion in How can we avoid turning off potential participants who see the wall of Closed questions? Specifically, what MichaelT wrote to JensG and the comment Telastyn left on the bottom.

Let's consider: What's the benefit of object-oriented programming over procedural programming?

Is that a good question?

When I first read it, its score was well into the negative (-4 or lower, don't remember). It was immediately pointed out how it was a duplicate and I'm sure it had 1 or 2 close votes, although those are now gone. Interestingly enough, data explorer query for that question shows that its score never dipped below -1, which I'm guessing is due to some of the original downvoters changing their minds and removing their downvote, unfortunately the schema doesn't track deleted up/down votes.

So as maintainers of P.SE content and upholders of FAQ (Is that the ultimate decision source?), what is our stance on such questions? If you are bad, you are bad and we shall close you? Or do the answers on the page have some leverage?

I'm not questioning the up/down vote system. I think that's great. Bad stuff gets low score, good stuff gets high score. But if this question was closed as fast as some of the others I've seen, as JensG would put it, it would just get "voted to an early death".

The other part, I'm not quite sure about (maybe this should be a separate post, and if so I can separate it), we close what's considered low-quality questions so they don't pollute the... question-space(?) but they are all still there. Hence what some refer to as "a wall", although some others have never seen one. So the closure doesn't actually remove the pollution, it just prevents a not so good question from potentially receiving a really good answer that could benefit the community.

I apologize in advance to the moderators if this is a noob question that has already been discussed and settled. I've been a member for a while now, but my involvement has mostly been drive-by posts here and there. I do appreciate the time and effort you guys are putting into keeping up this site.

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As much as I poo-poo the quick closes around here, I think this question falls squarely in the "likely to start a flame war"/"has no objective answer" realm - and based on the guidelines of the site, in its current state it should not be a question we support. ...and I largely agree with those guidelines, for most of the reasons commonly given.

All that said, this question could be "fixed" pretty easily by doing something like "what are the commonly accepted/argued benefits of OOP?". I mean, it's one thing for you to say "here is why OO is good" and another to say "X, Y, Z OO advocates say that...".

Further, I think that "big" questions like this (and a lot of our highest voted questions like What should every programmer know about web development?) should be kept around because they're important and useful to our consumers. Arguments about what programming language is best isn't important or useful to programmers. Knowing the difference between object oriented and procedural programming (and functional, and...) is.

So personally, I would err towards the side that thinks content influences the quality of a question.

  • "this question falls squarely..." - you referring to this meta question or to the linked one? – DXM Nov 3 '13 at 4:47
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    @dxm - the OO vs procedural one. – Telastyn Nov 3 '13 at 13:28

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