Why was this closed? It was closed as a duplicate, yet that other question is not a duplicate of it. It seems to me that people just quickly skimmed the question, and without paying too much attention closed it as a duplicate.

What can one do in response to this?

  • 2
    Are you simply asking about having these questions reopened or would you like to make a case against all moderators? If the latter, could you please supply more examples to justify the premise of mods never reading questions?
    – slhck
    Nov 3, 2012 at 6:25
  • @slhck: edited now, it just feels unfair to have that first question closed, since it is not a duplicate. The second one I'd understand, so I removed it now from the text.
    – houbysoft
    Nov 3, 2012 at 17:24
  • 1
    I can understand some actions might seem unfair, but as Oliver already put it, we handle thousands of flags – so if one or the other mistake happens, please don't assume this occurs all the time.
    – slhck
    Nov 3, 2012 at 17:27

3 Answers 3


First of all, yes, mods do read question.

We usually read these questions because users flagged them.

Which mod reads which flagged question is not really regulated. Every mod can and should handle every flag.
This can lead to me reading a question on a topic I'm not fully familiar with (like when I handle a flag on a question that is tagged ). Now when a user (or two, or three) has flagged a question as a dupe, I read the suggested dupe and decide, yes, this could be a dupe, then I would close it as a dupe without full understanding of the topic at hand.

This can lead to incorrect closure of a question. But usually, it doesn't, because this is what we do all day and, honestly, we're pretty good at it even if you would say otherwise.

Then there's the other case where the OP believes the question they posted is so special and specific that it is, in fact, not a dupe at all and deserves to have its own question.

Just like a mod can make a false assumption about question duplication, users can as well.

When you ask "Does Windows 8 contain an anti-virus or anti-malware solution?" and you believe this is a different question from "Do I need an anti-virus or anti-malware solution in Windows 8?", then I might even agree with you. But if the answers to the latter question implicitly answer your question then it's a candidate for closure, because your question will simply gather similar or identical information.

With these two questions however, I see no immediate reason to reopen either.


The question is about bringing back a feature from a beta version of Windows 8. I understand it's not exactly a dupe of the other question as it is about bringing back the classic start menu, something you don't want.

So, if it was reopened, I would consider it a strong candidate for "Too Localized" closure. As a reminder:

This question is unlikely to help any future visitors; it is only relevant to a small geographic area, a specific moment in time, or an extraordinarily narrow situation that is not generally applicable to the worldwide audience of the internet.

Antivirus in Windows 8

To my understanding, the question Does Windows 8 require any sort of Virus protection? covers the same ground. Thus, I see no reason for reopening.

The discussion if anti-malware products are required is inherently not constructive. That's why the other question was also already closed.


Most close voters do read the questions. Mods do.

It helps to try and describe the problem with words and not rely just on images which may be misleading or incomplete in delivery.

In "Turn on the Windows 8 start button like in the developer preview" you show that there is one version of the bottom left hand corner and then another image of a bottom left hand corner that you want.

In this scene, the difference is the start button. You want it back.

The question it was closed against is about getting back that start button/menu.

If a user points out or suggests your question covers the same ground as another, it never hurts to edit the current question to point out the other and why it is different to what is now being asked. This helps convince the argument toward keeping it separate and open.

  • The question it was closed against is about getting Windows 7-style start menu. I said quite clearly that I'm looking for the style of the Windows 8 developer preview.
    – houbysoft
    Nov 3, 2012 at 3:11
  • (Also, now it won't let me edit to make this extra clear)
    – houbysoft
    Nov 3, 2012 at 3:12

People make mistakes.

In the former, it immediately strikes the moderator's attention that this has been asked earlier. This probably caused the moderator to defer from reading the question further and starting to look for that duplicate, in a busy or less concentrated moment stuff like this easily happens. To let the mods know they did a hiccup, I've flagged that question requesting them to read it which might end up getting the question opened again. Or a new one since we're talking about an unfortunate merge...

Update: The mod is aware of this now.

In the second one, there is indeed a difference between both questions and it seems that people again skimmed the question and decided that Antivirus in Windows 8 is close enough to the first linked comment Does Windows 8 require any sort of Virus protection?. What I do here is reopen the question, if you don't have permissions for that then flagging might be appropriate too. On top of that, correcting the title to stand apart enough also will help prevent this.

If you see someone do a huge mistake; tell him so by comment (normal user), on chat (some regulars are at the Root Access chat room) or by flagging the relevant post or comment in case of a diamond.

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