I just noticed that the Help Center section that describes what is and is not on topic, and what the policy for homework questions and its rationale are, is outdated. It currently reads

  • MathOverflow is not for homework help. [ ... ] If your question was closed as "too localized," it was probably an explicit homework problem (or looked like one). MathOverflow is not the right place for such questions; they send the message that you want somebody else to do your work for you, and you're not even willing to ask it in a general form.

However, since the change in closing mechanisms, "too localized" was dropped. The text shown for questions closed as homework is now "Questions about homework are generally off-topic. MathOverflow is for mathematicians to ask each other questions about their research" (see e.g. this question).

Moreover, if a new user has their question closed they will typically first see it put [on hold] for a few days before it changes to [closed]. The text in the help center should reflect both of these changes.


I've fixed the text, I think. Feel free to leave further comments requesting other improvements --- we really appreciate help with the documentation.

  • $\begingroup$ Cool, though I really think this should read "if your question was closed or put on hold with the message ..." as that's what a new user would see first. If I find anything else I'll post in the other thread to avoid clutter. $\endgroup$ – Emilio Pisanty Sep 28 '13 at 13:18
  • $\begingroup$ Okay, slight further tweak. $\endgroup$ – Scott Morrison Sep 30 '13 at 4:01

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