We're getting quite some questions that are closed with a custom close reason. Over the past 90 days, we closed 234 questions, 40 (17%) with a custom reason. Looking through the list of custom close reasons that have been used over these past 90 days, I see many of the form

I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because the philosophical problem is unclear.


I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because this is not a question about philosophy.

Also in my experience, we're getting quite some questions that are just 'blatantly off topic'. Examples include

  • "What does this quote mean?"
  • Strictly mathematical questions
  • Questions about English usage (even when texts occur in a philosophical context)

I think we could benefit for a new close reason to cover these kinds of situations. I'm not sure (yet) how to formulate it, but something like

While this question may be related to philosophy or occur in a philosophical context, the question itself doesn't seem to be about philosophy, and is therefore not a good fit for our site.

Do you also think we could benefit from this, and if there is support from the community, could such a close reason be added? Suggestions for textual changes / scope broadening/narrowing are of course most appreciated.

Note: question close stats may be found for 2k+ users at https://philosophy.stackexchange.com/tools?tab=close&daterange=last90days.

Note: Crypto.SE has a close reason 'blatantly off topic - this question has nothing to do with cryptography'.

  • Some other sites have a reason that (when ported here) would sound like This question is not about philosophy, within the scope defined in the help center. Jun 28, 2015 at 18:23
  • @mixedmath I believe that's what written when we used a custom close reason; see e.g. philosophy.stackexchange.com/q/24664/2953
    – user2953
    Jun 28, 2015 at 19:46
  • yes. I meant to say that some other sites have that as an entire option with no additional commentary added. Sorry Jun 28, 2015 at 19:49
  • @mixedmath oh, I didn't see that before, but that certainly would be an idea too. Often we don't get a response from the OP, so we don't need to spend a lot of time writing a good reason every time again.
    – user2953
    Jun 28, 2015 at 19:55
  • I wish this was a standard close reason across stacks. I must imagine it was at some point, and was removed for some reason after a meta discussion. But I'm too lazy^W busy to research on Meta.SE.
    – Dan Bron
    Jul 1, 2015 at 20:25

1 Answer 1


I saw the same problem several months ago and added a generic off-topic close reason (esp. because the default one automatically attempts to migrate the question to another site). However, it needs another moderator to approve it and I believe at the time I was unable to get the attention of the other mods so it fell by the wayside.

We can definitely spice up the wording a bit and get this done one way or the other. :)

need another moderator to approve

  • 1
    I've remedied that. I'm sorry I didn't see it there.
    – virmaior
    Jul 1, 2015 at 7:36
  • I changed the wording to match what Keelan suggested above. Needs re-approval. Thanks :)
    – stoicfury
    Jul 1, 2015 at 7:56
  • Okay, it's done!
    – virmaior
    Jul 1, 2015 at 8:00
  • Blazing fast! :D
    – stoicfury
    Jul 1, 2015 at 8:00
  • Great, thanks a lot stoicfury & @virmaior!
    – user2953
    Jul 1, 2015 at 12:11

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