Every once in a while I will come across a question that is just so poorly written that I don't think it could be saved by providing critiques and giving the asker a chance to fix it. The most common examples of this are the questions that make completely baseless and incorrect assumptions about historical events, which essentially renders their entire question invalid.

There is not a "very low quality" option for questions; only for answers. Down-voting also doesn't affect a question unless a moderator gets involved.

What am I to do in situations like this?

I do not want to give any specific examples, because I don't want to throw anybody under the bus, especially when I won't be anonymous.

  • $\begingroup$ An example would be really nice. Querents give examples here in Meta all the time. $\endgroup$
    – elemtilas
    Commented Nov 21, 2019 at 0:39

3 Answers 3


The reason for closure are clearly listed:

  • question too broad
  • question too opinion based
  • question not about worldbuilding
  • question duplicate
  • question unclear

If the question falls into one or more of the above (refer to the help center for more details), go for it. If none of the above apply, then there is no ground for closure. If you are convinced that the premises of the question are faulty, you can write a frame challenging answer, or comment to have the defect fixed.

  • $\begingroup$ Why do you suppose that there is a "very low quality" option for answers but not for questions? $\endgroup$
    – overlord
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 21:40
  • $\begingroup$ Also, are there any guidelines for writing a frame challenge answer that I can consult? $\endgroup$
    – overlord
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 21:42
  • $\begingroup$ @overlord-ReinstateMonica, you can search for frame challenge, you will get several results like this $\endgroup$
    – L.Dutch Mod
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 21:50
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you for the link. I was wondering if there was an 'official' guideline, but it appears that the idea of frame challenges has mixed views. $\endgroup$
    – overlord
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 21:58
  • $\begingroup$ @overlord - "very low quality" is literally what the DV button is for. $\endgroup$
    – Mazura
    Commented Dec 21, 2019 at 4:44

If you hover over the downvote button on questions, you'll see the alt text says:

"This question does not show any research effort; it is unclear or not useful".

Downvoting is the proper course of action for questions that are bad, but which are not:

  • Out of scope;
  • Duplicates;
  • Too broad;
  • Primarily opinion based.

On top of that, users with 20,000+ reputation can vote to delete questions that have a negative score. If memory serves me right, a net score of -3 is enough on most cases to allow for such a vote. It takes only three deletion votes to delete such a question.


Low quality questions pretty much always fall into "unclear what you're asking" in my experience. In the case of a question based on false assumptions, it's unclear what they're asking because the logic is so twisted up.

  • $\begingroup$ I'm not sure I agree. I'm specfically thinking of questions of the type where "If you had typed this question into a google search bar, you would have your answer alreadY", although that would seem to meet the 'poorly researched' criteria for downvoting. That's certainly the primary reason I ever downvote anything. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 21, 2019 at 21:41

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