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Programmers could benefit from a few more regular visitors who close questions on the front page and the Unanswered page that are clearly off-topic.

"Clearly off-topic" means:

We don't do code troubleshooting here, so if your question is about how to fix your broken code or how to use your programming tools, ask it on Stack Overflow, making sure that you provide a minimal, complete, and verifiable example.

We don't answer survey questions, make lists of things, or engage in extended discussion here. We don't predict the future, find things on the Internet, provide customer support, or make product recommendations of any kind here. We don't know what project you should do next, what class you should take next, or what job you should apply for. We don't give legal advice.

At the moment, many such questions get three or four close votes, and then languish on the Unanswered page, sometimes for several days. Ideally, the goal would be to get questions like "Best Library" and "Coding Help" closed within the hour.

It just takes a few minutes a day. Usually, all you have to do is scan the Unanswered page for downvoted questions, and add your close vote where you agree. Alternately, review questions flagged as off-topic in the close queue directly.

As an added benefit, you would be inaugurated into the White Board Curmudgeon Club, where we hang out, talk about tequila, wax philosophic about a diverse array of subjects, and watch in amusement while new users can't figure out what the site is all about.

Any volunteers?

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    search URL for these questions: answers:0 score:-100..-1 closed:no (sort by newest) – gnat Jun 30 '16 at 22:35
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    Just downvote them as much/quickly, so they don't go off the front page before being closed. – CodesInChaos Jul 1 '16 at 14:29
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    @CodesInChaos: I don't usually downvote right away. A lot of my downvotes are on questions where I come back hours later and "this question is still here??" and the OP hasn't bothered to try and improve it (which pretty much describes every off-topic question. If the OP had been arsed to find out even a tiny bit about the site, they would have posted a better question). – Robert Harvey Jul 1 '16 at 14:32
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    Isn't the scope of the site, as well as the name, being reassessed right now? Given that the standards for this community are in flux while they're being rethought, rounding people up to close vote based on existing, established standards seems a bit counterintuitive. – Ana Jul 1 '16 at 19:10
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    @Ana: This post applies only to questions that are clearly and unambiguously off-topic, always have been, and still will be after the scope change (if it happens at all), such as coding help questions and product recommendations. I'm sorry if I didn't make that clear. Is it your assertion that we suspend all close voting activity until SE gets around to evaluating the scope change? How is this any different from the various close cabals that already pepper the Stack Exchange network? – Robert Harvey Jul 1 '16 at 19:18
  • Robert I believe you clearly enough described targeted questions - like "Best Library" and "Coding Help", these are definitely out of scope. @Ana please note how this post refers Unanswered questions - the very absence of desire answering them suggests wide consensus about them being off-topic. Site regulars may have different views on particular topics but there are also areas of consensus – gnat Jul 1 '16 at 19:26
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    @RobertHarvey I'm certainly not suggesting that moderation and caretaking activities should cease while the community goes through a period of introspection, but I'm making the point that recruiting others to the cause right now runs the risk of leaving folks running in opposing directions down the line as this community works to update the shared understanding of what it's all about. – Ana Jul 1 '16 at 19:29
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    @RobertHarvey Could always edit the question to add a couple examples of those blatantly off-topic posts, thereby helping eliminate confusion about what you mean from the getgo. – Ana Jul 1 '16 at 19:32
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    @Ana: Everyone know what "coding help" and "product recommendations" means. It sounds like you think that there isn't consensus here. While there are still a handful of people who long for the NPR days and think that we can still take the discard from Stack Overflow and make it work, what the site is (and largely needs to be) about is not generally in dispute. See meta.programmers.stackexchange.com/a/8061, which currently has 112 upvotes and 3 downvotes. The principal point of contention there is whether or not there should be an interstitial page, not scope. – Robert Harvey Jul 1 '16 at 19:34
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    @Ana: Further, the newly-proposed scope is not all that different from the status quo. It eliminates a couple of areas that we were never very good at (such as licensing and legal questions), and redirects them to new resources on the Stack Exchange network that didn't exist before which can serve those questions much better than we can. But mostly it's a re-stating of the existing scope, with improved clarity. The only remaining question is whether or not we can give new users some early warning; the vast majority of new users never see any of the Help Center articles. – Robert Harvey Jul 1 '16 at 19:38
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    @RobertHarvey I'm a little confused. What harm do you see in adding a couple specific examples of what you're talking about? As someone who cares about this community a great deal, and has put a lot of effort into maintaining a good space, I'm sure your specific input on posts which are problematic would be a big help to others who also wish to help with site care and maintenance. – Ana Jul 1 '16 at 19:40
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    @Ana: I've added a clarification. – Robert Harvey Jul 1 '16 at 19:43
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    @RobertHarvey Cool! – Ana Jul 1 '16 at 19:46
  • Is there a way to order reviews by the date the question was posted? I try to cast close votes on questions on the front page as I see them, but I get frustrated sometimes that the review queue is always so busy with old questions where closing them is of less immediate benefit to the site. – TZHX Jul 4 '16 at 17:26
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    @TZHX for myself I solved this problem with one-time effort of going through all close queue and mercilessly clicking skip on anythig that didn't look like requing immediate attention. After that queue started showing me only recently added questions, most of which are new. Here it is important to know that system keeps memory of your skipped questions and you can find them any time later by going to close queue history tab (10K users need to click "my review history" after that) and selecting checkbox "show skipped reviews" – gnat Jul 6 '16 at 10:28

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