Wondering if we can/should be a bit more restrictive on what/when we edit "On Hold" or "Closed" questions. I just opened up the front page, and 6 of the top 10 questions that boiled up under "active" were all on hold, and had bumped up because they had been edited.

It would be one thing if the edits were to have added to the question in such a way that they were to:

  1. Improve the question to the point that it could be reopened
  2. Preserved the original question/intent of the author

However, most of the edits that I'm seeing on these "On Hold" questions have to do with small grammatical changes that don't really seem to improve the question at all.

Example: enter image description here

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    The people who are voting to hold it should give some direction on how to improve the Q with a brief comment. Otherwise, you end up with edits like this one.
    – No Sssweat
    Dec 16, 2015 at 23:12
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    There is not need to give directions to avoid edits like that: It doesn't make the question re-openable. Also, it is not the task of the users who vote to close a question to give directions about how to edit a question; that is the task of the full community.
    – apaderno Mod
    Dec 17, 2015 at 8:07
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    @kiamlaluno so I guess I'll have to read/guess the voter's mind... hence you end up with potential worthless edits, no improvement what so ever in voter's mind.
    – No Sssweat
    Dec 17, 2015 at 19:38
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    The question was not closed because it started with I have a client who is nor because the grammar errors. It was closed for a specific reason, for which there is no need to read anybody's mind.
    – apaderno Mod
    Dec 17, 2015 at 19:49
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    @kiamlaluno "no need to read anybody's mind" which is why so many Q's get re-opened, right?
    – No Sssweat
    Dec 17, 2015 at 20:34
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    For sure, they don't get re-opened by a silly edit like the one in question.
    – apaderno Mod
    Dec 17, 2015 at 20:47

2 Answers 2


From https://drupal.stackexchange.com/help/editing

When should I edit posts?

Any time you see a post that needs improvement and are inclined to suggest an edit, you are welcome to do so. The original author of a question or answer may always edit their own post, regardless of reputation level.

Edits are expected to be substantial and to leave the post better than you found it. Common reasons for edits include:

  • To fix grammar and spelling mistakes
  • To clarify the meaning of the post (without changing that meaning)
  • To include additional information only found in comments, so all of the information relevant to the post is contained in one place
  • To correct minor mistakes or add updates as the post ages
  • To add related resources or hyperlinks

The types of edits you are pointing out do not meet any of these criteria and should not be made.

  • 1
    Good point but does not tell us what to do when we see such edits. I don't quite think it warrants separate meta question, so maybe you could expand your answer here?
    – Mołot
    Dec 16, 2015 at 7:41
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    You can always roll the edit back or leave a comment asking the OP to do the same @Mołot, briefly explaining why. Or flag for a mod to do it. If you see the same person doing it more than once, flag one of the posts with a custom reason and we'll take a proper look
    – Clive Mod
    Dec 16, 2015 at 13:52
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    @Pierre.Vriens Every time you edit a post, you are suggesting an edit. It just so happens that you've reached a reputation level where approval is not required for the edit you have suggested. Stop trying to pretend these rules don't apply to you based on semantics.
    – Clive Mod
    Dec 22, 2015 at 9:06
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    Also I guess for now the Winter Bash is stimulating to edit posts in a non-constructive way with the Timey Wimey hat edit 5 questions that were posted more than a year earlier. So it might be temporary? Dec 22, 2015 at 11:29
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    @Neograph734 Yes an no. Winter Bash does tend to bring out the "hat seekers", particularly ones seeking the edit hat. But, this is a problem that has been going on for a while now.
    – mpdonadio Mod
    Dec 22, 2015 at 13:53

Apart from what said from @MPD, I can see some more cases where editing could be (more) acceptable:

  • Editing tags
  • Removing tags from the title
  • Reverting spamming (done from the user who wrote the post, or other users)
  • Removing any name-calling (i.e. abusive language or insults) added to the post from any user, including the one who wrote the post
  • Removing any comments about users added from any user, except when comments are about a given answer (which doesn't mean users are allowed to write "the user who gave the other answer is an idiot")

The first has more sense if done to remove a misused tag, especially when a tag is going to be removed; the second one could also be avoided, but I think it is more acceptable if the questions in the front page contain tags in the title.

Since the closed questions are queued to be valued to be (eventually) re-opened, edits on closed question needs to be more careful. For some of us, used to the times when editing a question would not queue it for review, the habit could be hard to forget. Still, if the edit is done with the mere purpose of queueing the question in the re-opening queue, it should be absolutely avoided.

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