On Stack Overflow, we have the following off-topic close reason:

This question was caused by a problem that can no longer be reproduced or a simple typographical error. While similar questions may be on-topic here, this one was resolved in a manner unlikely to help future readers. This can often be avoided by identifying and closely inspecting the shortest program necessary to reproduce the problem before posting.

This programing question was recently asked and self-answered. The issue was the OP was trying to compile the file from the wrong directory in Macintosh Programmer's Workshop. To me, this Q&A pair is unlikely to help future visitors.

Should the question be closed? Should we add a "no repro" close reason to Retrocomputing?

  • 1
    In the specific case, the question is likely to be useful: the issue probably stems from the fact that classic MacOS uses : as a path separator, but most people aren't aware of that. I'd post an answer to that effect, except I don't have a way to confirm it.
    – Mark
    Aug 5 '16 at 20:21

No, I don't think this issue has escalated to the point of becoming a top-level close reason for this site.

The custom close slots are for those frequent, pervasive issues that come up often enough to put everyone on notice that these always need to be closed. But you have to be carefully about bulking up that list too early. First, you'll run out of slots for the "big stuff"… and using every errant post as an occasion to create a new rule can make this site become unapproachable quickly. It's just not a big enough problem to enumerate.

Incidentally, if a mistaken premise in a question makes it fundamentally no longer relevant to any future visitors (like an oopsie-typo in a configuration file), you can make an editorial decision that this question no longer has any possible purpose to exist and flag it for removal.

  • 2
    Thanks Robert. In general, what is the process for proposing new off-topic close reasons? Is that controlled by the moderators or Stack Exchange community team?
    – JAL
    Aug 5 '16 at 16:08
  • 4
    @JAL Both. Sometimes I'll add them when the community is young, but only if it's pretty obvious there is a common confusion about the scope of a site. But custom close reasons usually emerge from pervasive meta discussions when enough people start to feel "I'm tired of explaining this in comments." Aug 5 '16 at 16:12

I wouldn't assume this will never help anyone else either - unlikely to apply directly, but it might be the hint someone needs at some point in the future.

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