MO users might be interested in this StackExchange experiment: Testing three-vote close and reopen on 13 network sites. There has been considerable discussion around close-votes in MO Meta over the years. My own opinion is that a move from $5$ to $3$ votes would not be beneficial for MO.

It might be useful to become prepared to answer a possible future request from StackExchange on this issue.

  • 20
    $\begingroup$ Somehow it seems to me that the move from 5 to 3 votes would be more beneficial for reopening than for closing. For closing it might help reduce the workload of filtering out homework questions, but there might be a lot of babies thrown out with that bathwater. $\endgroup$
    – Tim Campion Mod
    May 3, 2021 at 20:42
  • 10
    $\begingroup$ It would be great if we had quantitative data about this. How many questions have we had recently that stopped at 3 or 4 close (or reopen) votes? Is there a list, so that we can see for ourselves if they are baby or bathwater? $\endgroup$ May 4, 2021 at 10:28
  • 7
    $\begingroup$ Certain controversial questions have produced close/reopen wars in the past. The new rule would speed these up by a factor of 5/3. That's probably not a good thing. $\endgroup$ May 4, 2021 at 16:09
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ @ChristianRemling: Those close/reopen wars are rare, and generally get by resolved by moderator intervention in any case. I think this change should be judged on its effect in the more common cases, not the rare ones! $\endgroup$ May 4, 2021 at 17:01
  • 11
    $\begingroup$ If close/reopen wars are a concern, we could suggest SE to implement an increasing threshold: 3 votes to close/reopen the first time, 5 the second time, 7 the third, ... $\endgroup$ May 4, 2021 at 17:37
  • 8
    $\begingroup$ I guess a good strategy about close/reopen question cannot be seriously discussed without seriously studying the history of such questions. $\endgroup$
    – YCor
    May 4, 2021 at 22:36
  • $\begingroup$ Making it easier to close a question makes it harder for the user posting the question to improve it before it gets closed. $\endgroup$ May 4, 2021 at 23:35
  • 7
    $\begingroup$ I think it is not even easy to predict whether reducing the number of votes required to close a question would actually lead to questions being closed faster. -- There may also be an opposite effect that makes one more reluctant to vote to close if one's vote has a higher weight. In any case, as long as there is no bigger problem with the current setup, I'd be very careful with such change which may have various hard-to-predict consequences. $\endgroup$
    – Stefan Kohl Mod
    May 5, 2021 at 9:37
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ At the present, as far as I know, there is no plan to implement this change for sites that not explicitely ask for it. All the sites in the experiment (and some others) have asked for it! $\endgroup$ May 9, 2021 at 20:51
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @FedericoPoloni, re, surely the proper number of votes the third time is 8, and then 13 the fourth time? $\endgroup$
    – LSpice
    May 11, 2021 at 16:50
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Just a passer by, but seeing the year in moderation stats here it looks like most of the closing is done by mods. If they have a desire to lighten that workload moving to 3 vote closures could be beneficial. $\endgroup$
    – Luuklag
    May 14, 2021 at 20:48
  • $\begingroup$ @Luuklag Could you clarify what you mean by "most of the closing is done by mods"? The post you linked says: Questions closed - 138 Moderators, 3258 Community. (For reopened questions, the numbers shown there are 10 and 20.) $\endgroup$ May 16, 2021 at 2:30
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Ouch @MartinSleziak I mixed up the columns in my head. $\endgroup$
    – Luuklag
    May 16, 2021 at 6:59


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