I've noticed a series of questions all closed as too broad:

The Ice of Eurasia, in Full Detail

The Poles, Great Lakes Earth


The Neo-Tethys Sea, in Full

While they are all quite broad (and cover a big chunk of land) I don't agree that they are too broad (and one of them is receiving re-open votes). We've had far broader questions in the past be well received. In particular an "overview" answer could quite easily be given and has been given to at least two of the questions.

So what is it specifically about these questions that makes them too broad and would need to change to see them opened?

  • $\begingroup$ I don't understand why broadness is even an excuse to close a question. Does this go completely against the point of discussion on any Stack Exchange? $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 31, 2016 at 15:28
  • 5
    $\begingroup$ @JohnWDailey A question being too broad is a reason for closure because we don't want people to have to write proverbial books to answer someone's question. Many answers on Worldbuilding go into a fair amount of detail, but a question should be answerable in a few paragraphs. Stack Exchange is supposed to be about, and works best for, getting specific answers to specific questions. This is colloquially known as "the book test": If you can imagine an entire book that answers your question, you’re asking too much. $\endgroup$
    – user
    Commented Jan 31, 2016 at 16:27
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ @JohnWDailey That is a basic misunderstanding. Stackexchange is not a site for discussion. From the tour: "This site is all about getting answers. It's not a discussion forum." $\endgroup$
    – his
    Commented Jan 31, 2016 at 16:52
  • $\begingroup$ Discussions and answers--is there a difference? $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 31, 2016 at 18:26
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    $\begingroup$ @JohnWDailey Yes there is a difference. Discussions are a "back and forth" interactions such as you have in chat. Q&A is clear question followed by clear and (hopefully) complete answer in one cycle. $\endgroup$
    – Tim B
    Commented Jan 31, 2016 at 19:42

1 Answer 1


(Disclaimer: I voted to close one of those question.)

The problem is that the climate is a very complex phenomenon (otherwise there wouldn't be any prolonged debate on global warming... or it wouldn't have lasted that long). There are plenty of parameters that come into the definition of a climate, and to my knowledge, not all are even know to the research. The OP provides some changes to our known world, and typically asks how that affect climate.

Unfortunately, changing one parameter affects many others. Making the result kind of hard to actually predict. Like if the sea was up by 77m around Africa, some piece of lands disappear... how does the climate is affected? Well, it's hard to explain, because that would mean more water on the globe's surface and therefore the global temperature would be affected, probably more water evaporation, more storms, the sea currents would probably be affected as well. Making it hard to provide a definite answer. The same is true for the ice thing. @o.m. actually provides some points about it in the comments.

In the end, we already had a discussion about it, where my (amongst others) view on it is already summarised.


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