Yesterday there was a question about solving the functional equation $f(\alpha t)f(\beta t)=C$ for $C$ constant, $\alpha^2+\beta^2=1$. It was closed as "unclear what you're asking" when the OP ignored multiple requests for an edit to clarify the implied quantifiers (for all $\alpha,\beta$? there exists $\alpha,\beta$''? etc.)

Today the question is gone but I do not find it listed under either "recently closed" or "recently deleted". I'm just curious how a question disappears without being visible in the "recently deleted" list.

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    $\begingroup$ I know selfdeletions do not show up in deleted list, which howver seems extremely unlikely as reason in this case (one cannot selfdelete closed questions). I thought moderator deleted posts do not show up either but after double checking this seems different (or at least less clear regarding conditions). So I too would be quite curious regarding this (in general). $\endgroup$
    – user9072
    Mar 11, 2014 at 14:37
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    $\begingroup$ Unfortunately, I cannot find the link to the question. Nevertheless, I think the question asked for a solution to $f(\alpha t)f(\beta t) = f(t)$. $\endgroup$ Mar 11, 2014 at 15:15
  • $\begingroup$ Ricardo: yes, that is what I meant --- $f(\alpha t)f(\beta t)$ is a constant independent of $\alpha,\beta$ (but not independent of $t$). On the other hand, the OP seemed to be quite reluctant to reveal his true intent. $\endgroup$ Mar 11, 2014 at 15:24
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    $\begingroup$ Downvoted questions disappear from some lists. Are you sure it is deleted? Gerhard "Ask Me About System Design" Paseman, 2014.03.11 $\endgroup$ Mar 11, 2014 at 17:38
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    $\begingroup$ @GerhardPaseman yes, but it should not disappear from recently closed (or reopened) in moderation tools due to score. (I did not check myself if it is there, but this is what Steven Landsburg said he did check.) $\endgroup$
    – user9072
    Mar 11, 2014 at 20:20
  • $\begingroup$ It turns out the restriction I claimed (no direct selfdeletion of closed questions) was dropped at somme point; sorry for not being up to date. Yet, it was in place on the old MO, see also meta.stackoverflow.com/revisions/5222/2 (to be clear the link is to obsolete documentation, it is only to document that it was like I claimed earlier) $\endgroup$
    – user9072
    Mar 12, 2014 at 9:45

1 Answer 1


Pretty sure you're talking about this question.

For reasons that either predate my involvement or am simply unable to recall right now, the list of recently-deleted posts excludes those that were deleted by their authors.

Moderators do have access to a different list however, which includes only self-deleted posts, and which was created for the sole purpose of allowing them to clean up after folks who decide to be jackasses and delete lots of useful stuff - so don't hesitate to bug them if something important goes missing.

  • $\begingroup$ It doesn't seem to be on the list of self-deleted posts I can see. $\endgroup$ Mar 11, 2014 at 23:57
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    $\begingroup$ Yeah, looks like that list has other arbitrary restrictions - no posts deleted within a day of being created. $\endgroup$
    – Shog9
    Mar 12, 2014 at 0:17
  • $\begingroup$ How very odd that the OP preferred self-deleting over adding a few words of clarification. $\endgroup$ Mar 12, 2014 at 23:11
  • $\begingroup$ @StevenLandsburg, see tea.mathoverflow.net/discussion/1187/… for a large scale version of this. $\endgroup$
    – Will Jagy
    Mar 13, 2014 at 19:36

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