This is a feature-request post.
Upvoting it means you agree with the proposal.
Downvoting it means you disagree with the proposal.
You can answer or comment if you want, but you don't need to.
Context (TL;DR at the end)
As y'all probably know, when you flag a question as off-topic, there are a number of reasons available for you to pick.
Since every stack is different and there's some degree of "off-topicness" specific to each site, mods are allowed to include up to three "custom" reasons in that list. Spanish.SE currently offers two custom close reasons:
- Questions asking for corrections in a text are off-topic.
- Questions that show no effort are off-topic.
On top of that, there are some standard reasons that you can also choose:
- This question belongs on another site in the Stack Exchange network. [utterly useless since it forces you to pick "Meta Spanish.SE" as the target stack, but that's a whole nother story.]
- Blatantly off-topic (this question has nothing to do with the Spansih language).
Here you have the four options in all their glory:
So far so good, all bases covered. Kind of. You can always pick "nothing to do with Spanish" for off-topic questions that do not fall into any of the custom categories.
The problem arises when you notice that the "Nothing to do with Spanish" reason is not available for 99% of the users who actually flag posts.
When a user gets to 500 rep, they get the Close Questions privilege. This has a number of (possibly unwanted) consequences:
- It adds a new close reason, "Other", where you must type the reason for closing the question. - It turns every "close" flag into a close vote. - The "Nothing to do with Spanish" option is not available to you anymore.
This is what a user above 500 rep sees when flagging:
There's no option to say that a question is just not about the Spanish language!
Because of this, users are forced to pick the "Other" option and manually type "this question is not about Spanish". Just like they did here, here, here, here, here, and here (just in the last three months, and I even left some out).
This has been noticed and discussed before, but the actions we took back then didn't tackle this particular problem. What they did, however, was free up a slot for another possible custom close reason.
And so we get to the...
The "Nothing to do with Spanish" close reason is not available to most users who actually cast close votes, so they are forced to pick "Other" and type a reason of their own. Since we're only using 2 of the 3 possible "custom reason" slots, let's make use of the remaining free one to include this:
This question is not about the Spanish language as described in What topics can I ask about here?. Esta pregunta no versa sobre el lenguaje español según se describe en ¿Qué tipo de preguntas puedo hacer aquí?
as a proper canned reason to close posts to which no other reason applies.
It can be used for blatantly off-topic questions.
It can also be used for several other types of questions which are off-topic as per the rules, but don't have their own reason: translations from Spanish to other languages, handwriting-recognition questions, etc.
And finally, as having to write their own reason might discourage some shy users from casting close votes at all, including this custom reason will solve that too.
IMHO this is a simple change that would be welcome by everybody.