I use x, y, and z and can't do A,B,C, is my q,r,s right?

How do you cope with questions I like to call 'helpdesk' questions: Questions that are made to solve users problem, and most likely ONLY the specific user's problem and nobody elses? Example Question. I do not see a good flag for this questions. What should be the standard procedure?

1 Answer 1


What you are referring to are issues with questions which seem to be too localized. However, this closure reason was removed in 2013 as it was misused too often:

5(A). "Too Localized" is no longer necessary since the specific off-topic reasons now address its main use case. (new)

Too Localized was, by far, the most misused close reason in our surveys, with both Community Managers and Moderators deeming over 50% of randomly sampled TL closures to not have merited closure (including on SO).

Today, TL is used helpfully on code dump questions on SO, but the new OT reasons are where this is now correctly addressed. SO can use "Large blocks of code with requests for debugging without meaningful supporting info" as a specific OT reason.

Here's what the new list looks like:

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Questions closed prior to these changes will not be mapped to the new reasons, as it's not a 1:1 mapping, with the exception of Duplicates and Off-Topics. The others will continue to reflect the reason picked at the time they were closed.

What you can still do, is voting to close it as off topic. If you run into this issue more often you could

auto review comments

Regarding the specific question you linked, I'm not feeling very comfortable with using the too localized flag because you never know when there might be another user running into a similar problem, even though it looks very unlikely.

If it's off topic, close it. If it's low quality vote it down. If it's unsalvagable or spam, flag it.

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