All SE sites are allowed a few 'custom close' reasons -- options for closing which are specific to that site (even if they've been stolen from other sites :)

We currently only have the generic: "This question does not appear to be about genealogy or family history within the scope defined in the help center."

Are there any additional reasons we would like to see added to offer more assistance to posters about why their question had been closed, and/or to lead to improved questions which elicit better answers ?

Please answer with one reason per answer, so we can see from the voting on each answers which are favoured and which are not.

  • I had to look up the stock answers. They are: Duplicate - This question has been asked before and already has an answer. Needs details or clarity - This question should include more details and clarify the problem. Needs more focus - This question currently includes multiple questions in one. It should focus on one problem only. Opinion-based - This question is likely to be answered with opinions rather than facts and citations. It should be updated so it will lead to fact-based answers.
    – Jan Murphy Mod
    Feb 18, 2021 at 22:54
  • 1
    Parking some useful guidance: meta.stackexchange.com/a/362584/195988
    – user6485
    Mar 27, 2021 at 11:56
  • Only graduated sites may have custom close reasons. Now that we are graduated, this question may realistically be asked.
    – Judith
    Jan 29, 2022 at 9:56

2 Answers 2


One custom-close reason adopted by a number of site -- e.g. History -- is:

Welcome to History:Stack Exchange. Thank you for your question; please consider revising it to be more in line with our community expectations. Like many other stacks, we expect questions to provide evidence of prior research. That helps us to understand the question, and avoids our repeating work you've already done. Our help center, and other stacks provide additional resources to assist with revisions.

We frequently have to ask for details of what research an OP has already done/what sources they have consulted, so closing until they give us that detail might make sense.

Of course, if they haven't done any research because they don't know where to start, that would be fine as long as the OP says so -- it helps us tailor a beginner-level response.

  • I like the idea behind History's custom-close reason but it seems too wordy (yes, I know, I'm the queen of verbosity, but still....). I think it would be better to have the person closing the Q write their own welcome and pointer to the help center and have the stock message could be something like this: Needs to show research effort Please tell us what sources you've consulted to get the information contained in your question. That helps us understand your question and avoids our repeating work you've already done.
    – Jan Murphy Mod
    Feb 18, 2021 at 23:01
  • 1
    @JanMurphy I'm not convinced that (1) people will bother writing their own welcome etc. and (2) that somebody whose question has been closed will look in the Help centre -- I'd prefer to have the info up front and centre for them. But we can decide wording if there's general support for the suggestion.
    – user6485
    Feb 19, 2021 at 8:04

We don't need any Custom Close reasons -- what we have is good enough.

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