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I'm not pointing fingers at ANYONE, I promise. I've seen a few multiple instances where people will vote to close and then answer a question, however. Such as this case.

Don't we vote to close because we personally think the question is not suitable to answer currently? I'd like to hear the community thought. To me, it seems odd to vote to close something as "not going to answer" and then PERSONALLY answer it.

I can understand people who choose to answer who voted to stay open or simply had not voted at all. However, when you explicit vote you are expressing your explicit disapproval.

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I do it when I think a question is salvageable, or borderline close-worthy. I consider close votes to be feedback, in the interest of improving the question. So sometimes I answer the question that I hope it will turn into. Sometimes the improvement never comes, and sometimes the close votes go another way, regardless. Bad questions get nothing. Your example...I probably would have left that one alone. Philipp thought differently. No big deal.

Basically, I don't think we have to stick to a specific course of behavior in responding to a question. Likewise, we don't have to use all available options on a poor question. For example, I don't refuse to answer, downvote, and then vote to close.

I usually close vote instead of downvoting, for example. I rarely vote down anything except really crappy answers. But that happens rarely too, because non-answers (flaggable) happen more often than really bad ones.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ It's not a real feedback, since the OP doesn't get notified of the close vote. \$\endgroup\$ – o0'. Apr 16 '14 at 15:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ They don't? The question is marked with a notice about the consensus of the voting. I guess the OP has to actually return and view the question again, but that seems like a reasonable requirement. \$\endgroup\$ – Seth Battin Apr 16 '14 at 15:56
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    \$\begingroup\$ You don't get notifications, so you realise that only if you come back, which is not obvious: if I receive no notifications, I usually assume I got no answers. Plus, just casting votes gives no feedback at all until the question gets closed, even if you come back there. \$\endgroup\$ – o0'. Apr 16 '14 at 16:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ I guess that's less than ideal, but I still think expecting the person to return to their question is reasonable. The all-votes problem is usually mitigated by interim comments. If you think the question can be improved, a comment may be warranted, too. I guess I'm saying that a close vote doesn't have to be the only feedback, but it is certainly part of it. That's what this meta post is about, isn't it? Close voting and {other}? \$\endgroup\$ – Seth Battin Apr 16 '14 at 17:28
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Closing a question only sometimes implies unanswerability. For example, a question that was off-topic here may be on-topic somewhere else, where an answer may be useful when migrated. Others may also disagree with your vote, or the question may be reopened later.

I see no reason to introduce social or technical restrictions where they don't need to exist. If you see reason to both vote and answer, do it.

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There is no voting for closing anymore, just voting for keeping questions on hold. There is a subtle but important difference. A question is on hold until its content gets improved enough for the restrictions to be removed.

With these improvements in mind, one can attempt to answer.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Questions are voted on to be put on hold, then once they reach 5 hold votes, they're put on hold. If they're not improved in a week, they're closed. \$\endgroup\$ – MichaelHouse Apr 17 '14 at 17:56
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I am not sure what's the ideal behavior here. But I do answer the question if I understand what the OP wanted to ask and if I can answer it correctly. Most of the time it happens when the question was off-topic. The motto of SE is to solve people's problem by helping them get to the right solution, so why not provide solution if you can. To punish them for asking at wrong place is to either flag it or downvote it. But in the end they need an answer and most of the time it was an honest mistake, which shouldn't wait for the bureaucracy for migration and then answers. That's just my point of view, others might see it differently.

PS: Helping doesn't mean that you should entertain repeat offenders.

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