When I was particularly active on meta, the topic of debate was about whether we should close low quality questions. If and when to delete questions didn't really come up.

I've recently gotten the impression the current state of affairs is that for low quality questions the aim is to proceed swiftly towards deletion. This has probably been true for a while but I've only recently paid enough attention to really notice.

My questions are:

  • Is my impression accurate? That the goal now is deletion of low-quality questions?
  • Are there any reasons a question should be closed without being deleted?
    • I imagine "duplicate" and "other reasons" should be treated separately
    • I imagine "very low-quality" and "other" should be treated separately
  • If the answer to the above is "no", are we abandoning the "on hold" idea for waiting for the OP to improve the question?
  • Is there something else I should have asked?
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    $\begingroup$ Regarding the third major point this was recently revisited "Is deleting a question while it is still on hold too quick?" $\endgroup$ – quid Apr 7 '18 at 7:58
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    $\begingroup$ Regarding the first point, deletions are common since years. And indeed the basic idea is that when a question is put "on hold" then it is either (improved and reopened) or deleted. Of course this is an oversimplification, but the basic idea of the intended workflow is this. Not each an every closed question will/can/should be deleted, but basically "closed" means it could be deleted. $\endgroup$ – quid Apr 7 '18 at 8:01
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    $\begingroup$ Whether or not anyone specifically aims for it, most closed questions are likelier than open ones to proceed toward deletion automatically. See How can a post be deleted?. In particular, the rule RemoveAbandonedClosed will delete closed questions in only a few days; the only thing that can permanently stop this is a positive score on the question or (positively scored/accepted) answers. By contrast, an open question with score 0 and no answers will stick around for an entire year (by which time one hopes something will have changed). $\endgroup$ – Misha Lavrov Apr 8 '18 at 4:01
  • $\begingroup$ I'd say that the only one who determines whether a question put on-hold/closed is a prelude to deletion is the asker, and their intervening effort, after being put on hold, to improve the question and address (in a constructive way) the reasons for closure in the first place. So I'd say that "closure" is not necessarily a prelude to deletion, lest an asker make it so. $\endgroup$ – amWhy Apr 8 '18 at 19:11
  • $\begingroup$ @Misha But there's a qualitative difference between most posts that remain open, and those that are put on hold (closed). Some open posts go unnoticed. But the fact that a post has been put on hold, hasn't garnered a positive score, etc., makes it a very different post, qualitatively, than a post that remains open, (in most cases.) $\endgroup$ – amWhy Apr 8 '18 at 19:14
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    $\begingroup$ Hurkyl Of course, the answer to your question may be "yes or no". " If the answer to the above is "no", are we abandoning the "on hold" idea for waiting for the OP to improve the question?" As I said in my first comment, the one responsible avoiding, or assuring, the deletion of a question is the asker of the question. Being closed/put on hold does not, in and of itself, lead to deletion. The failure of an asker to improve their post is the cause of a post's deletion. Similarly, some askers work hard to improve the question, which are often reopened, and remain to this day. $\endgroup$ – amWhy Apr 8 '18 at 19:20
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    $\begingroup$ My only point is $$\lnot \forall x \Big((\text{question}(x) \land \text{put-on-hold}(x)) \to \text{is-deleted}(x)\Big)$$ It's not that simple a relation that being put on hold invariably leads to deletion. And I think it's irresponsible to suggest all do, and I think your question misses a lot of situations, varying outcomes. $\endgroup$ – amWhy Apr 8 '18 at 19:27
  • $\begingroup$ Better to spend more time trying to solve problems, than to provoke them. $\endgroup$ – amWhy Oct 2 '18 at 17:10
  • $\begingroup$ @amWhy: Solving problems requires understanding them. (incidentally, did you accidentally comment on the wrong thread?) $\endgroup$ – user14972 Oct 2 '18 at 17:13
  • $\begingroup$ This question, @Hurkyl: Note the lack of answers, and the brevity of discussion, save perhaps, for a handful of comments, including my comments, to which you never responded, I don't see that here. Nor have you set up a fair representation of whatever "problem" there may or many not be with downvotes (In particular, you've already assumed it is indeed a problem, but you've been deaf to the discussions taking place, just today even, and the fair counterargument: If theirs something wrong with downvotes, then perhaps there's something wrong with upvotes. $\endgroup$ – amWhy Oct 2 '18 at 18:15
  • $\begingroup$ Anyway, I've seen you operate on MSE and on META, trying to act like some sort of "arbitrator", and I don't buy the "wannabe" arbitrator attempts of yours. $\endgroup$ – amWhy Oct 2 '18 at 18:16

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