Stop closing on-topic questions just for mentioning another distro!

Just out off top of my head for the last time, here's one, OP simply stated distros they tried — Fedora, Fedora again, Ubuntu, etc — the question is closed. Later then they diplicated the question by simply removing the list, and — oh, surprise! — now it's on-topic!

It went even worse for this one. "It was edited" — you'd say — "I'm sure the horrible mess was here in the 1-st revision!". Well, let's look at it: "I've been using Fedora'n'Ubuntu… blahblah… crashes, frozen… blahblah… Ubuntu again…". They mentioned the word Fedora a single time, and got 4 (four!) downvotes, and the question closed for no reason — are you serious?

  • 2
    The first one was closed because it asks "what distributions support my hardware?" That is off topic, as we only support Ubuntu. I edited it a bit to fit better, hopefully it will get reopened. The second one is very unclear but not off topic in its current state, it should be reopend and then closed as unclear instead.
    – Mark Kirby
    Sep 24, 2016 at 8:50
  • And did you yourself moderate any of these questions?
    – Rinzwind
    Sep 24, 2016 at 8:53
  • @Rinzwind what can I do? I can't cast re-open vote until 3k rep. In the end this is one of the reasons why I posted it here.
    – Hi-Angel
    Sep 24, 2016 at 8:54
  • 2
    Put on blindfolds :) Don't get worked up on things out of your hand and get those 3k? When I came here -all- I focused on was getting to know the site and then rake in reputation. I used the Ubuntu chat to get informed. That 3k is nothing and when the system gives you the privilege start caring about it.
    – Rinzwind
    Sep 24, 2016 at 8:58
  • 2
    @Rinzwind I don't care about reputation. It's just that for me the 2 ways to get a question reopened are: 1) to mention with @ a people who voted to close. This wouldn't work well because the system only allows to notify a single one, and they would wonder "why me, I wasn't the single who voted for". 2) Post the question on Meta, which I did as the 1) wouldn't work well.
    – Hi-Angel
    Sep 24, 2016 at 9:04
  • I was the one who made the edit on the second one. May I ask what was wrong with it? The OP stated that they had tried Ubuntu, but it didn't work, and was now using Fedora. See the comment I left. Sep 24, 2016 at 11:10
  • @AndroidDev they stated he's using both distros, they asked here as a site of one of them. Btw, I didn't mean your edit, I meant the last one, which removed any mention of Fedora, and made it brevier (both of which good, but unfortunately didn't save the question from being closed).
    – Hi-Angel
    Sep 24, 2016 at 11:20
  • @Hi-Angel - Ah. Sep 24, 2016 at 11:23
  • 1
    @Hi-Angel Fedora may be an F-word but reading your bio I think you are a secret Arch-Linux fan :p Oct 2, 2016 at 17:37

3 Answers 3


The first question is off-topic because OP is asking for a "distribution compatible with MSI ACPI" and has already ruled out Ubuntu. This would mean any suggestion we give is not Ubuntu and therefore off-topic. The question that you claim is a duplicate of the first question is phrased differently: the OP now wants to "do something to be able to use [U]buntu with MSI ACPI". This is now on-topic because it is in fact about Ubuntu.

I agree the second question should not be closed as being off-topic. It would still probably be closed as being unclear because we need more information to suggest solutions.

Note: Mark Kirby has made an edit to the first question and included the phrase "or can I get Ubuntu working?", so that would make the first question on topic now. Therefore, the followup question has become a dupe.

  • 1
    +1 This is almost exactly the comment I just left :) I edited the first one, so it should be OK now.
    – Mark Kirby
    Sep 24, 2016 at 8:51
  • @MarkKirby Yeah I just saw your edit. I think we can reopen the first question and dupe the followup question.
    – edwinksl
    Sep 24, 2016 at 8:52
  • Agreed, second one is a dupe of askubuntu.com/questions/4408/…
    – Mark Kirby
    Sep 24, 2016 at 8:53

It happens occasionally that a question mentioning different OS gets closed because of wrong review/ Errare humanum est. When you see a question being closed, there's a few things you should do:

Assess the question for validity

  • Ask yourself , does the question really ask something related to Ubuntu ? Is it a good question? What is the core of the question? In the first question, OP asked for a distro suggestion, so that's more fitting for Unix & Linux Stackexchange, but not for AskUbuntu. There may be a few special cases where question may be applicable to Ubuntu , but it's rare
  • Check the close reasons by clicking on the "close" link, and it will show you why people vote to close. Just because a question mention another distro, don't automatically assume that's the reason - there's whole lot of things that can be wrong. Here's a screenshot of one for example:

enter image description here

  • Check the comments below the question: typically high-reputation users who have been here for a while leave a comment explaining what's wrong with the question.

If you believe question belongs on this site:

  • Flag for moderator attention. Explain clearly why you think the question should remain open.
  • Leave a comment under the question requesting users to retract the close votes.

More importantly

  • Don't show attitude just because a question is closed. Abide by Ubuntu Code of Conduct and be nice to others. Really, it's not the end of the world if a question is closed.
  • Listen to what other users have to say and their reasoning for closing the question.
  • I think it would be futile for me to flag mod to re-open if you (>30k club) and other >2k club members flagged it closed. Indeed I would think I missed something you saw and simply move on... But it's nice to know I can challenge using technique you suggest :D Oct 2, 2016 at 17:42
  • @WinEunuuchs2Unix It's rare, but does happen when high-reputation users make mistakes. Feel free to challenge the decision if you think it's wrong one, and it's not as futile as you may think. Oct 2, 2016 at 18:13
  • 1
    Small note since OP is <3k rep, <3k rep users can't see the "close" link on a question, they can't even tell if a question is being closed or not.
    – Dan
    Oct 3, 2016 at 8:31

I can see that you care about community. https://meta.askubuntu.com/a/15873/115155

The rules for accepting a question are quite strict so that the community can keep up with the waterfall of unrelated questions. It is keeping that focus that keeps us going.

If you spot questions like the ones you spotted (which, I think were correctly closed and later marked as dupe), can you please leave a comment on the question itself? That pushes the reviewers to view your perspective. Or can you push the person asking the question to rephrase it so as to make it relevant?

I know you are trying to do the right thing, and almost all of us have been at that point (in your words: 'are you serious?').

  • So, to recap, does leaving a comment on a closed question pushes it into a reopening review queue? I didn't know that.
    – Hi-Angel
    Oct 4, 2016 at 4:25
  • No it does not. But you the comment helps the people that are reviewing the close votes/are evaluating whether to close it.
    – don.joey
    Oct 4, 2016 at 7:49

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .