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I was reviewing some closing votes, and I stumbled into a question which seemed ok to me: at most, I would have added a tag. So I clicked on "leave it open"; a message appeared, saying

«This was only a test, designed to make sure you were paying attention. You passed. For reasonable questions, Leave Open is appropriate.»

Given that in the past I did leave open a number of questions, I wonder what is the use of such a message. I may understand the reason behind the test, but then wouldn't it better not to say anything when the test was passed and showing a pop-up only is somebody did not pass it?

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Saying "You passed" has multiple uses, as far as I can see. I'll outline a few:

  • It can make users aware that tests exist to begin with. This could improve their reviewing practice.
  • It can explain why some obviously good question has a "close vote" (mutatis mutandis for audits in other review queues).
  • It's a nice counterpart for the fact that you are addressed negatively if you "fail" an audit; an attempt to balance carrot and stick, so to say.
  • It provides an opportunity to reiterate the proper/intended course of action, thus catching reviewers who did the right thing with the wrong motivation.
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    $\begingroup$ of course this is only my own opinion, but I fear that knowing that there is a test may lead to be less prone to review posts. Given that anyway a single miscategorization does no harm, since at least 5 votes are needed, it could be better for the site to have more reviewers and an error rate a bit higher. (Yes, I may accept the stick but I don't feel good with a carrot :-) ) Of course I repeat that I have nothing against the tests per se $\endgroup$ – mau Sep 9 '13 at 9:22
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    $\begingroup$ @mau 5 votes are only needed for closures and reopenings. For reviews of edits, only 2 reviewers are needed, and there have recently been a lot of examples of edits that should never have been approved making it through the review. $\endgroup$ – Tobias Kildetoft Sep 9 '13 at 9:27
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    $\begingroup$ ... which should mean that the number of reviewers necessary to make a choice should be increased :-) (I am of the school "statistic convergence works"!) $\endgroup$ – mau Sep 9 '13 at 9:56
  • $\begingroup$ Another reason worth mentioning is the fact that some audits finish the moment you upvote, downvote, or flag. For a normal review you'd still have to click the I'm done button. $\endgroup$ – kasperd May 3 '16 at 10:51

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