This is about this question, which was closed as "not a real question".

First off, I apologize if this question(?) doesn't belong here on meta; I didn't know where else to put this forward.

So my "question" is: Could the status of that question be changed to : "closed as not being a research level question"?

To me the question in question looks perfectly valid, and I think that the answer that Kevin gave addresses it to a good extent. I would have upvoted this answer, if I knew that it was OK to do so for a "removed" question.

I can very well remember the times when I used to have this and similar doubts about computing and computers, and I still have such doubts about other areas of science. Perhaps because of this, the current response by the community strikes me as being harsh, especially considering that the asker is a 16-year old. I can understand the need to keep the discourse at the level of research, but surely we don't want to scar curious people, do we?

  • $\begingroup$ I voted "off-topic" but I guess the system simply goes with the majority. $\endgroup$ Apr 20, 2011 at 22:37

1 Answer 1


The problem is that there are only a few choices for closing, and we've debated this issue before ('not a real question' vs 'off topic'. In this particular case, there were votes on both sides.

Possibly 'off topic' would have been the best solution here, along with some explanation of why it was being closed. I was the final close vote, and did it somewhat hastily while browsing the moderation queue. So maybe it was just my mistake.

  • $\begingroup$ I am grateful for the amount of time and effort that you (and the other moderators) put into making this a great place for our community; please don't take my question as being accusatory. I laid down my rationale only to avoid having to spell it out later in response to a possible "why?" question. If changing this is troublesome and/or contentious, then please don't bother about it. $\endgroup$
    – gphilip
    Apr 20, 2011 at 5:34
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ no I didn't take it that way at all. I just meant that there isn't a mechanism under our control to "add choices" to the close menu $\endgroup$ Apr 20, 2011 at 6:12

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