My question was re-opened but has been put on hold again by some members of this website.

Is it due to the fact that I had posted free-body diagrams which made the question seem like a "check my work" question? I have removed the information which caused this suspicion.

Please let me know what else is still not okay with my question?

  • 3
    Your question starts with "I am doing this homework problem" and there's no hint of the actual question until the last 5% of the text. That's a problematic structure no matter the context. – Emilio Pisanty Sep 24 at 20:37
  • @EmilioPisanty I figured I should provide a context before I can state my actual problem. I don't think it would be appropriate to jump straight to my issue without first explaining what got me there. Besides, the title of my question also contains my actual problem. – a_sid Sep 24 at 20:46
  • You for feedback; acting on it is up to you. There's a pretty large number of acceptable structures that would be clear up-front about what the question is, instead of waiting until the last possible minute. (Keep in mind that the title does not form part of the question body in this respect.) – Emilio Pisanty Sep 24 at 20:49
  • I don't get it... I'm quite sure you've already written a meta post about this question; I remember having seen the exact same question through a meta request to reopen. The post history shows that it has a long story of close votes and deletions and reopenings and undeletions. Could you tell us what feedback you got on the last meta post and how it changed? – Chair Sep 25 at 0:51
  • @Chair. I have written a meta post about this question in the past. It was closed for the first time because I presented my work and asked what exactly I was doing wrong. I was told that this website is not for checking people's work on homework problems. I modified my question to focus on the specific conceptual issue that was preventing me from solving the problem. David Z found my change to be acceptable and he reopened my question. – a_sid Sep 25 at 1:12
  • 2
    The funny thing is, that you can actually get here help for your homework, if you ask your question looking not homework-like. What you can't do: you can't get a copy-pastable solution to your copy-pasted homework question here. But you can get detailed and super-useful answers from hardcore professionals, how to solve it. The logic behind: the site doesn't want to become a free homework-solving service, but it wants to become an useful repository of physics questions, with strong google attracting power. If you help the site to reach this goal, it helps you to solve your homework. :-) – peterh Sep 25 at 22:45
  • @peterh I understand that. This is why I actively modified my question several times. I was keen to learn how to effectively utilize this site for enhancing my understanding of physics. – a_sid Sep 26 at 2:19
  • @a_sid There is another problem: many VtC reviewers are voting actually all homework-like questions for close, and also a lot of obviously not homework questions for close, on cloudy reasons. With it, they are violating the relevant policies, but they are too many and too strong, and we can do only few with them. Discussions to move the actual homework policy and practice closer, lead to infinite bikeschedding without an approvable consent. – peterh Sep 26 at 16:53
  • @a_sid And yet another problem: the voters are much lesser happy to reopen a closed question, than close an open question, also it is unclear to me, why. But try what you can do. – peterh Sep 26 at 16:55
  • 1
    @a_sid You have already 3 reopen votes (incl. mine). Hold the topic warm! 2 are needed yet. There are also some other effects, too. 1) Problem citates and question lists cause a strong "for close"-urge in the voters! It is because nearly all copy-pasted homework problem has these. Formulate your question to not have it! 2) If you collect somehow 350 rep (you already have 112), also you will have a close/reopen vote regarding your own questions. So you will need only 4 votes for a reopen, instead 5. (Taking part in the close/reopen votes of others requires 3000.) – peterh Sep 26 at 18:22
  • @peterh Thank you for clarifying how this website really works. – a_sid Sep 26 at 20:19
  • @a_sid Your question has probably already fallen out from the reopen queue, because 3 "leave closed" votes were already collected. But the already existing reopen votes (there are now 3) were not invalidated! But if you edit anything in it, a new reopen vote will be started, and your question will start from 3. The reopen votes will slowly timeout, maybe one per week. (A single reviewer can vote for close/reopen on the same question only once per month). So, now wait around a day (to make sure that the reopen vote is already done), and then edit something in your question, ideally reformulate – peterh Sep 26 at 20:42
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    @a_sid it to not have the (a) and (b) points, and to not have the citate any more. It is also very useful, if you don't ask for a numerical result, ask for the method, how can you calculate it. | Asking questions is actually harder on the site as answering them. – peterh Sep 26 at 20:43
  • @peterh Thanks again for the advice. I modified my question according to your suggestion. I hope it is sufficient to reopen my question. – a_sid Sep 27 at 1:53
  • @peterh It's 250 rep for viewing close votes on your own questions, not 350. I don't like the way you're making it sound like there's some mysterious majority imposing evil upon the people asking homework-like questions, although I do agree that we do sometimes close slightly-conceptual homework-type questions. Perhaps it would be more constructive to bring up another meta post citing recent examples of clearly conceptual homework questions which should have stayed open (there are probably a few), and use those to say that we need to discuss the homework policy's interpretation once again. – Chair Sep 27 at 12:36
up vote 2 down vote accepted

I can't say for sure why the people who chose to put your question on hold made that choice, but I suspect that the question is long enough that the specific conceptual question you want to ask isn't clear. As of the current revision 19, I'm assuming this is the specific conceptual question:

[...] However, would that not cause the force due to pulling to get cancelled out?

That's a perfectly fine thing to ask. I think removing the extra free-body diagrams as you did in the latest edit will help make it more clear, but you could even go a little further and make the summary of the work you did more concise. Remember that the focus of the post should be the specific conceptual question you want to ask (again, presumably what I quoted above), and most of your post should be devoted to setting up that question. Anything else you can just briefly summarize.

I wouldn't mind voting to reopen the question in its current state (revision 19), but I'd like to hear from at least one (preferably several) of the close voters first to see whether there were other issues that caused them to vote as they did.

  • Thank you for the feedback. I too am keen to know from the voters what all of a sudden has made my question undesirable for this website. – a_sid Sep 25 at 0:06
  • 1
    @a_sid It isn't that your question suddenly became unsuitable. Looks like you made an edit after some months of inactivity, and once it was bumped to the front page, someone flagged it/cast a VTC. And after that it sits in the close review queue for people to easily find it and decide whether it should be closed or not. So what actually happened is that it suddenly received attention. Anyways, take a reopen vote from me; it looks OK, though anything with quotes and the word 'homework' is inherently a target for suspicion. – Chair Sep 25 at 11:46

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