I had asked this question some time back. What I intended to know was understood perfectly by the person who has answered it. Since then, the question has been viewed a thousand times earning me a 'popular' badge. It shows that lot of people had that question in mind. Surprisingly, I have only one up vote for my question but that is the least of my concern. I feel 'closing' this and similar questions based on some technicality will stop people from asking curious questions. Curiosity is the mother of physics. Let us encourage it.

  • $\begingroup$ Okay, why are you correlating the number of views with the question being closed? These two things are different & need not run parallel to each other. It is not a hard-&-fast rule that a question that gets more than 1k views can't be closed at all. You can see this question: Why do people still talk about bohmian mechanics/hidden variables; it got over 20 votes & got over 5k views. So what? The reason for closing it was quite obvious. [contd] $\endgroup$ – user36790 Dec 3 '15 at 3:53
  • $\begingroup$ . What technicality are you talking about? The question ended in one sentence; okay. But did you show your thinking? Well that would be better explained by the experts. What my point is that number of views has no relation on whether the question needs to be closed or not. Probably the question appeared on hot list & got a good no. of views; that's it. And BTW, we don't discourage anyone at all from asking anything. Have you tried to know why it was closed? Have you tried to re-open it? I'm not seeing so. $\endgroup$ – user36790 Dec 3 '15 at 3:58
  • $\begingroup$ @user36790: All I am saying is the questions should be seen on a case by case basis. My question was clearly a physics question. I think you have not read the answer to my question. The person who answered it has perfectly understood my 'one line question' and also how I came up with that question. It was 'closed' because I think it lacked the mathematical rigor and references. The moderators give no chance to a curious person unless he has a sufficient physics background $\endgroup$ – Jay Dec 3 '15 at 4:09
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    $\begingroup$ No, no, that's pretty offensive. You are quite over-extrapolating things. Many questions come here where OP has possibly no physics background & they get good responses unless the question is beyond the mainstream subject which then needs to be closed. If you are not understanding why the question was closed, then you have no right to allege that some mods suppressed your question; that's insane. $\endgroup$ – user36790 Dec 3 '15 at 4:19
  • $\begingroup$ Exactly my point. My question is not beyond the mainstream subject. It has got a very good answer. Hence, I don't know why it was 'closed'. Is it not ironic that 'closed' questions appear as 'hot' questions? P.S: I don't mean to offend anyone. My apology if anyone felt so. $\endgroup$ – Jay Dec 3 '15 at 4:23
  • $\begingroup$ Now whether the decision to close it or not is another question. You can ask at meta for clarification on why your question was closed. And no, it's not at all ironic. If you can amend a wrong question, it can be re-opened. $\endgroup$ – user36790 Dec 3 '15 at 4:26
  • $\begingroup$ The person who has answered it has perfectly understood the question and how I thought about it. I invite the experts to update the question accordingly. I'll be grateful. Thank You. $\endgroup$ – Jay Dec 3 '15 at 4:29
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, John has written a decent answer for a layman & he deserves the upvotes. And wait for the experts to come on why the question was closed. If they find it unreasonable, then your question could be re-opened. Hope for the best:) $\endgroup$ – user36790 Dec 3 '15 at 4:31
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    $\begingroup$ you have 2 decent answers, even one accepted, what more do you want? to some degree the purpose of the site has been fulfilled: to get multiple answers (it is not the purpose of the site or even possible to continually generate new answers). the question can continue to rack up views even while closed. but do agree closing is too aggressive all over SE in general... the "on hold" concept was supposed to soften it, but its just ineffectual semantics. Physics Chat is a place for ongoing discussion by experts if thats what anyone wants... $\endgroup$ – vzn Dec 3 '15 at 4:34
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    $\begingroup$ Wow! The meta effect has started to work. You've got 2 upvotes within 1hr of asking this question:P $\endgroup$ – user36790 Dec 3 '15 at 4:35
  • $\begingroup$ @vzn: I don't want anything. I had asked this question an year back and had completely forgotten about it. My attention was drawn after I got a 'popular' tag for the question. I feel we are not sending the right message by 'closing' such questions. $\endgroup$ – Jay Dec 3 '15 at 4:38
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    $\begingroup$ @user36790 Of course the question about Bohmian Mechanics was a perfectly reasonable question. $\endgroup$ – Дау Dec 3 '15 at 7:23
  • $\begingroup$ @Дау: Oh ! have I said it unreasonable? $\endgroup$ – user36790 Dec 3 '15 at 8:18
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    $\begingroup$ @Jay : please note that moderators don't close question, other posters vote to close it, and if there's 5 of them, the answer gets closed. This sounds reasonable enough, but I think you have a point. I seem to be seeing good questions closed for inadequate reasons, by the same old names. I for one will exercise more care when looking at candidates. $\endgroup$ – John Duffield Dec 3 '15 at 17:14
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    $\begingroup$ I had not seen the original question but I agree that John Rennie did a sterling effort to read your mind and answer the concern you had. Note that five votes to close "because unclear" puts the question on hold: it is an invitation to you to clarify your question further. It doesn't automatically "kill" a question. That would only happen if you don't respond to the "on hold" status with further edits and a request to re-open. We do expect people asking questions to do a fair amount of work to make sure the quality of the site remains high. Quality of answers AND questions. $\endgroup$ – Floris Dec 5 '15 at 18:56

I'm a bit surprised this got closed as unclear. It's really a duplicate and could have been closed on that basis, though I chose to answer the question because I judged it wanted a less technical answer than the duplicate.

Anyhow I have edited the question in an attempt to make it clearer what is being asked. Jay, please feel free to undo my change if you don't think it fairly represents what you are asking.

Since the question has an accepted answer it's debatable what will be achieved by reopening it. However I can see that it's annoying to have your question closed when it's a perfectly good question so I have voted to reopen.

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    $\begingroup$ Your changes to the question are perfect. $\endgroup$ – Jay Dec 3 '15 at 8:17
  • $\begingroup$ Let me see what they say when they come; I would ask them at chat. $\endgroup$ – user36790 Dec 3 '15 at 8:17
  • $\begingroup$ @Jay Given the quality of the question before the edit (no explanation at all), I am not surprised it got closed. $\endgroup$ – Norbert Schuch Dec 3 '15 at 8:21
  • $\begingroup$ @Norbert Schuch: That's what I thought & told him; the question just ended in a single line without showing any thought of OP. And OP didn't come again(!) to modify his question. So, it got closed. $\endgroup$ – user36790 Dec 3 '15 at 8:24
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    $\begingroup$ All I can say is that the meaning of the question seemed obvious to me. Unless I have unusually advanced telepathic powers it should have been equally obvious to anyone with sufficient knowledge to answer the question. Anyone who felt it wasn't sufficiently clear could have edited it rather than just voting to close. You may feel this is a mild criticism of your position - I couldn't possibly comment :-) $\endgroup$ – John Rennie Dec 3 '15 at 8:29
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    $\begingroup$ @JohnRennie I don't see why everyone should have completed the question in the same way in their mind as you did. This is a problem with underspecified questions: If you had the same question at some time, or with some probability, you will immediately understand what is meant, while otherwise, you have no idea what this question is about and you feel the OP did not put much effort into the question. Fortunately, this can be cured by a more specific question with no negative effects! $\endgroup$ – Norbert Schuch Dec 3 '15 at 8:33
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    $\begingroup$ JohnRennie, I must say I still don't understand the question even after the edit. "Light should escape from a black hole because it only needs to travel a finite distance to escape, and at a speed of c it will do this in a finite time."...just doesn't sound like logic to me. For instance, I could imagine the light going around in a circle around the BH, travelling at c. Just because it travels at c doesn't mean it travels at c in the outward direction, so I don't get how one arrives at the conclusion that the speed of light must be reduced from what is written in the question at all. $\endgroup$ – ACuriousMind Dec 3 '15 at 9:37
  • $\begingroup$ @ACuriousMind: OK, so I have edited the question and added directed radially outwards. $\endgroup$ – John Rennie Dec 3 '15 at 9:46
  • $\begingroup$ @ACuriousMind : Please account for a fundamental gap in understanding of the concept of the OP . This is essential for this forum. $\endgroup$ – Jay Dec 3 '15 at 10:11
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    $\begingroup$ @Jay The purpose of this "forum" (we emphatically are not a forum, by the way), is not to answer any questions anyone might have about physics. That would be every other physics site on the internet. The purpose is to be a community of experts. Questions that are unintelligible to experts will drive them away. We do not want to become a place where everyone is asking questions but nobody is qualified to answer them. $\endgroup$ – user10851 Dec 3 '15 at 10:26
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    $\begingroup$ @Chris: Got this description from this site: "Physics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for active researchers, academics and students of physics and astronomy. ". It includes student of physics. Anyway, if you feel it is not suitable here, go ahead and delete it. $\endgroup$ – Jay Dec 3 '15 at 10:34
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    $\begingroup$ @Jay If your question consists of only one sentence without any elaboration, you likely did not put enough effort into it (i.e., explaining why you find this confusing). It is not on us to read your mind. $\endgroup$ – Norbert Schuch Dec 3 '15 at 15:30

I present a few counter-points:

Simply put: there is no correlation between views or votes and topicality. Questions that are ill posed, which your original formulation certainly was, can still acquire rep & views, despite a closed status, which is how you got your badge about it.

I don't at all believe we should let the view counts (which can never decrease) or votes influence whether a question is on-topic or not. That should be decided by the question itself (and the required 5 voters opinions on the question).

That said, if your question is closed, feel free to ask why it was closed (preferably in a timely fashion, but 1 year is fine too if you want to wait that long) and how you might make it better to get it reopened.

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    $\begingroup$ Informally I might expect a partial negative correlation, in the sense that the questions which get the most views are more likely to be closed. There's a certain class of questions that are easy, popular, but bad for the site. $\endgroup$ – David Z Dec 3 '15 at 14:17

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