So debating closure of certain questions on META apparently is a thing, so I figured I'd give it a shot.

I recently came across this question: An empire to last a hundred centuries

Which I understand is popular but I couldn't help but knee jerk to how clearly it fits with the criteria of opinionative and too broad. (not that I normally care this much)

The simple fact is this question is akin to asking "how to make a utopian society" which obviously is a popular topic but at the same time completely unanswerable. If it were answerable, our current geo political strife would be over.

It's too broad because the sheer amount of factors that attribute to the stability or instability of a government can not be fully addressed in an answer here.

It's to opinionative because there simply isn't enough information and too prone to chance that the significance of any of the previously mentioned factors could affect the end result. You could even argue that an isolated island civilization managed to retain government for 10K years because of sheer luck.

Please note I only bother to bring this to meta because of the popularity of this question.

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    $\begingroup$ If you think a question should be closed, isn't the accepted procedure to flag/VTC and possibly write a comment explaining why? Also, I'd make the argument that, given enough context, it is possible to worldbuild a scenario where a utopia is possible, even if it's not possible here and now (in real life), as the context is totally different $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 2, 2017 at 20:11
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    $\begingroup$ To add to @Mithrandir24601's comment above, that specific question already has a few close votes. So I honestly am not sure why you wrote this. $\endgroup$
    – user
    Commented Nov 2, 2017 at 21:17
  • $\begingroup$ The question is now closed. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 6, 2017 at 18:33

2 Answers 2


The popularity of a question should not be considered when voting to close.

If you feel that a question is too broad, too opinion based or any other close reason, then you should either flag it or vote to close.

  • $\begingroup$ I disagree. Or rather I draw the line at a different place. I often quite enjoy the 'too broad' questions, as they reveal a whole whack of interesting possible answers, so my 'too broad' in general is a lot wider than what the moderators think is too broad. Opinion based: Unless tagged with one of the tags like 'reality check' 'science based' 'hard science' then the bulk of the answers on this branch of SE are going to be opinion based. A badly reasoned opinion based answer should be downvoted, but just asking an opinion based question should not normally be a down check. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 13, 2017 at 18:14
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    $\begingroup$ This answer makes no judgement about the reasoning behind voting to close a question. Just that if a member of this site feels a question meets the criteria for closing then, depending on the amount of rep they have, they should either flag the question or VTC, regardless of how well the question is being received. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Commented Nov 13, 2017 at 18:26

For me it failed "a book test" - if you can write a book and still do not answer question fully, it is too broad. Have you read Roma Eterna?


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