Provide a path for low-rep users to get a successfully edited closed question reopened

by Brendan   Last Updated July 11, 2019 17:24 PM - source

"If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question."

If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

If you're lower rep and you don't know what the reopen link is as a result, then it's very easy to read this as "it's closed, but will be reopened if the reason for closure is edited away". My edit was approved, and I didn't understand why the question wasn't reopened until I remembered from another SE site that reopening is a separate thing, and a privilege that I don't have access to on SO.

Something's wrong here. The wording does not clearly state that I can edit a post, but editing has nothing to do with reopening.

And now that I remember that distinction (to be clear, I only know the distinction because I'm high-rep on another site; I didn't figure it out through SO's UI), I'm not sure what the path forward is. I flagged it and tried to explain this but I have no way of checking the outcome of the flag that I know of. I added a comment in hopes that OP or someone else could see it and vote to reopen, but there's no feedback there either. Future visitors will see that the question is closed, and they'll likely assume that it was closed for its current wording and thus see no reason to reopen.

If I see another question I can edit for the purpose of reopening, why would I do so if I have less than 3000 rep?



Answers 2


The wording does not clearly state that I can edit a post, but editing has nothing to do with reopening.

That's not an entirely true premise (emphasis mine).

Editing is the very first step you need to get a question reopened:

  • Editing bumps the question up to be seen at the active home page.
  • If other's think that the question is now eglible for reopening they can vote as such.
πάντα ῥεῖ
πάντα ῥεῖ
July 11, 2019 17:10 PM

Actually, the very first edit to a post, after closure, sends the post to the "reopen queue" where users with sufficient reputation will review the question for reopening. Hence, the first edit, whether by the asker, or a user, is the most important to try and get "right": correcting the post so that it addresses the reason for closure.

While the first edit may send a post to the reopen queue for evaluation, it doesn't guarantee the post will be reopened. Enough reviewers must vote to reopen in order to reopen it.

Subsequent edits will NOT send the post to the reopen review queue. They might bump the question to the forefront, for users who follow the active home page. It may be that your suggested edit was not the first edit, and so did not initiate a review by users as to whether to reopen or not.

Jedrek Mansfield
Jedrek Mansfield
July 11, 2019 17:19 PM

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Updated May 18, 2016 08:10 AM