Here are two questions that do not make sense, while reading them:

  1. At CERN - What do you call the moment (event) particles crash together in the particle accelerator?

  2. Is there a proof of existence of time?

My observation is that second question doesn't get better if you read the answers. I didn't learn anything new from the answers. It just looked to me like a philosophical exercise in renaming things for the sake of renaming things.

On the other hand the first question actually did got better when I read the answer. I've learnt something new. I've got better understanding of the particle physics experiment.

What bugs me is the moderator response to both situations. It was the first question that was blocked -- not the second one. I think that something is wrong with that. And I think that it has something to do with the standard complaint about "not enough experts" that you guys have here.

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    $\begingroup$ I don't agree with your stance that Question 1 should not be closed, but the issue is important, so +1. $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 24, 2013 at 14:54

1 Answer 1


First one had one close vote, two comment upvotes (other than mine), and a flag. It was brought to our attention by the flag, and I closed it -- it made sense because it isn't really about physics concepts, and that's what we more or less deal with here.

Besides, answers do not justify the question. The question effectively asked for one word, but it got a more elaborate and interesting answer. For that matter, any question can get an elaborate and interesting answer. Closing in this case doesn't lead to deletion, all it does is prevent more answers and not invite similar questions. Nothing wrong with that.

I don't think any of the mods even saw the second question. However, at first glance it's not a well-worded question, but it is asking something sensible. It's effectively asking if physics allows for the notion that time is an illusion. I'm open to arguments about it's unsuitability though.

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    $\begingroup$ Regarding the first question, I think our notion of "concept" should be extended to include some terminology questions. Personally I wouldn't have closed that question. Maybe this is an issue for a separate meta post about terminology questions? $\endgroup$
    – David Z
    Commented Jul 22, 2013 at 19:34
  • $\begingroup$ @DavidZ I think so too, terminology can be confusing and needs explanation. $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 23, 2013 at 2:06
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    $\begingroup$ I like "answers do not justify the question" part. And tend to agree. $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 23, 2013 at 12:51
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    $\begingroup$ In a sense "answers do not justify the question" is a good point. On one condition though, that there be better questions that can produce these good answers, or some equivalent. $\endgroup$
    – babou
    Commented Jul 31, 2013 at 23:03
  • $\begingroup$ @babou yep, that's pretty much the philosophy $\endgroup$ Commented Aug 1, 2013 at 8:03

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