Related: Why is everything suddenly too broad?

Somewhat shortly, I hope to acquire my next 'Steward' badge; for casting close votes. This wouldn't be a problem if I didn't have the feeling that I accrued the last, say, 200 close votes in only three months or so. I do certainly have the feeling that there's a marked increase in the number of questions being nominated for closure, not just exact but also in relation to the number of questions asked.

My questions are thus:

  1. Is this true? Has the (relative) number of close nominations increased over say, the last six months; or is my gut playing me and is it just the effect of the total amount of questions increasing--and thus the number of close nominations as well? Or is it just the inflow of bad font-id questions that skew my view?
  2. Are we closing too many questions? Has our 'closing culture' become too strict and are we scaring away newer users with our strict criteria?

If there's anyone who can provide some statistics to either belie or confirm my suspicions, that would be great!

  • I dare those who disagree to vote to close this question :P
    – Vincent
    Commented Feb 13, 2015 at 14:22
  • I would but that would actually close it, lol
    – user9447
    Commented Feb 13, 2015 at 14:23
  • 1
    with great power...
    – Vincent
    Commented Feb 13, 2015 at 14:26
  • 1
    comes great responsibility
    – user9447
    Commented Feb 13, 2015 at 14:27
  • 1
    I will try to post something later tonight. Just as a quick note, the indicators of our sites health have been steadily increasing. Up to 18 Q's per day, 58k views a day last I checked. Over the last 3-4 weeks our views per day has grown by a thousand each time I checked. Based on that super quick analysis, everything is hunky dory. :)
    – Dom
    Commented Feb 13, 2015 at 15:28
  • I can't upvote because it feels to me like I'd be saying yes when I disagree, but I want to because I'm glad you brought it up. So, -1, +1. :)
    – Dom
    Commented Feb 13, 2015 at 15:34
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    @Dom Nah, an upvote would just be a sign that you appreciate the discussion. If you disagree, you can always vote to close...
    – Vincent
    Commented Feb 13, 2015 at 17:22

6 Answers 6


I believe what you're seeing is the nature of Graphic Design on the Stack Exchange platform, particularly with the very very small user base of regular members.

As a result of the system, the longer we stay open the more closure there will be. There simply isn't that many unique questions that people come here for so many are duplicates. For everyone one or two truly terrific questions there's a plethora of poorly worded or completely off-topic questions and then the few good questions are going to continually be more likely to be duplicates.

In recent time we've also seen an uptick in close votes because of our decision to close Font Identification questions.


Yes there are a number of increased closed votes and it has been going on for awhile. I noticed when I received the gold badge for closed votes I needed to step back and let the community vote on it because I was closing too many.

That said there are some issues that should be addressed with this.

  1. Improper usage of the flag tag: I am not going to say any names or call anyone out but a few members choose to flag a question to be closed but actually dont vote on it. The flag should only be used on important instances or on a question that has extreme issues or is against our SE model.
  2. Burned on editing: I think a lot more "regulars", I dont blame them if they feel this, think more people vote to close a question instead of editing it. I understand we get new users and some of them couldn't care or have no desire to read our FAQ but if the community is going to want the site to grow positively and not be closed then more people need to step up.

As your linked question from your edit on why is everything to broad. I feel that is because new users ask for tutorials, vague questions on how to do this and show no visible effort.

I do also feel that my rep has diminished because I am one that is actively voting to either close or stay but I'm a mod and my responsibility is to take care of the site. Because of this, I will only vote to close a question that I see:

  1. Clearly against the SE model
  2. Has a quality duplicate
  3. Is very unclear what the question will cover

If you are unsure about closing the question then skip it.

Now the other end. I think we need to work on editing and tagging questions which seems to be brought up often but I think site regulars are starting to think their contribution to the community may be for nothing and the lack of rep I see regular members not getting I think the community is taken their help for granted. If you notice many of our regulars are not coming around and that may do with the level of quality questions. In the same paragraph I think we also need to understand that an SE site must be held to SE's standard and in a professional manner. I think you do a great job commenting, informing, and being pro-active to new users and I do thank you for that.


I think we're just being firmer about closing "I need a tutorial for X," font-id, and brainstorming questions. Other than stating really clearly in the help/FAQ, I don't know how else to explain that these are off-topic. I realize newbies come here and say "Hey, they're designers, they work with this stuff all the time! Maybe they'll know!" and certainly on a discussion board that would be fine. But SE isn't set up that way.

I dunno; maybe we need an Adobe SE just for "how do I do X?" questions. :)

  • Having a separate SE would remove a lot of the traffic from here Commented Feb 13, 2015 at 21:03
  • @ZachSaucier but if we're closing those questions, are those people ever coming back anyway? Commented Feb 13, 2015 at 21:40
  • It's not a matter of those users coming back, it's a matter of other users coming and finding their question and a solution here Commented Feb 14, 2015 at 4:55

Yes. There are more close votes.

And Yes.. there are more poor quality questions.

There's been an influx of users, which is great. But the quality of questions has taken a dip lately with many of them asking for complete tutorials or basic Adobe 101 questions (which are only loosely design related). Many questions show absolutely zero effort. In fact, a google search for the same "how do I" question would answer many of them.

I think the number of close votes is in direct proportion to the quality of questions and isn't inherently a problem. I would only be concerned if good questions were getting close votes - which they aren't.


I personally don't find a problem with "how do I" questions, even if they are basic. I understand it would be better if all questions would be complex and obscure because we would build a really rich and interesting body of information, but I don't have a problem helping "newbies" (not one of my favourite words). I answer those questions very often (sometimes even before they are closed...) and that might be one of the main reasons I keep coming back: because I find it fascinating that I can help somebody, almost anonymously, sharing with them the knowledge that I have accumulated, like other users do or have done with me.

If I have simple questions, I tend to find the answers really quick on Google by myself, but I understand not everybody might be as efficient or as independent as I am. We come in many colour, shapes and sizes. I have interacted with highly intelligent and creative people that are incapable of finding their own way around Google searches. It is a specific set of skills some people might not necessarily have.

Dismissing simple questions has the risk of turning this community, (as it could happen to any other community) into a group of self centred ruminants debating transcendental questions such as how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.

  • While I kind of agree on a personal level. I'd never turn away a question asked of me personally, no matter how rudimentary. But for GD.SE, if basic software how-to questions are allowed to flourish, this site will quickly become about nothing more than basic Adobe educational questions. It's already a bit too Adobe-centered overall, in my opinion.
    – Scott
    Commented Feb 23, 2015 at 22:15
  • Yes, I guess you have a point.
    – cockypup
    Commented Feb 23, 2015 at 23:14

If a question have already answers, votes, and probably a "solved" mark, I don't see the poing on puting it "on hold".

(Edited some weeks later).

Again this is subjetive.

I was answering a question that probably was not a Shakespeare masterpice. I was taking time to answer, preparing an example etc. And then the question is closed. The question was clear enough.

This is getting anoying. Yes, you can vote down to this response.

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    Preservation of the site's scope. If they remain open, it allows users to argue "Well this other question is on the site, why is mine not allowed?". And justifiably so. To prevent that type of confusion, off topic questions need to be closed or removed.
    – JohnB
    Commented Mar 4, 2015 at 0:10

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