I flagged this question. When I did, there were 5 or so flags available, including "need of moderator intervention". I picked this one because I could not find the option "not suitable for this site" which used to be there. Now the flag was declined because I did not pick the correct flag. If I want to flag it again, this is what I see:

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It seems the list changes if a questions was closed. For a different (open) question, I have these options:

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There is no "not suitable for this site". So which flag should I use in this case?

  • 1
    We've understood that there's definitely some confusion about how to recommend closure for a question from the flag dialogue - the "needs improvement" terminology and the description doesn't really indicate to many people "should not be here" or "off topic" - we're hoping to look into this in the future but don't have any immediate plans, so I've marked this status-deferred.
    – Catija
    Jun 16, 2021 at 14:49

1 Answer 1


I managed to find the flag, it is buried in the flagging menu:

  • "needs improvement" (clearly not true for a question which is off-topic, it should just be closed),
  • "community-specific reasons" (again, I don't see why this makes sense: do other SE sites not close OT questions?), and then
  • "blatantly off-topic".

I find this placement immensely counterintuitive for people like me who only flag occasionally, as I need to make two selections which seem wrong.

  • 5
    I feel most of your pain, but am powerless to address it. See here for a relevant post on Meta SE. I do consider off-topic a community-specific reason, however, since it is specific to the community what is off-topic. That doesn’t mean that it’s intuitive, of course. It can’t do any harm to add a sentence to the explanation though. The problem with the word off-topic on SE is that it has been the label of this category for so long that it has acquired a different meaning on SE. This caused a lot of confusion in the past.
    – Wrzlprmft Mod
    Apr 6, 2021 at 12:00
  • 1
    do other SE sites not close OT questions? – Yes, but they receive far fewer of those than we do (at least off-topic questions in the common meaning of the word). On the two other sites I moderate (German Language and Graphic Design), questions that are completely off the scope (and not spam and similar) are a rare event. Only few sites need and have an explicit close reason for blatantly off-topic stuff like we do.
    – Wrzlprmft Mod
    Apr 6, 2021 at 12:03
  • @Wrzlprmft I see. Maybe that's why the meta SE question hasn't gotten more resonance. (81 views? I find that quite surprising.) It still seems like a good idea to request this, especially since this is (in terms of the underlying technology) a trivial problem to solve. Is there any good way to petition SE inc for this?
    – cheersmate
    Apr 6, 2021 at 13:19
  • 3
    The "needs improvement" item used to read "should be closed", which better explains what it is: it is essentially a version of the close dialog available also to people with not enough reputation to access it, through a flag. I guess that the SE politically correct police decided to change the wording (meta.stackoverflow.com/q/396754) because closing questions is too offensive. :) Apr 12, 2021 at 12:24
  • @cheersmate About the number of views of that question, beware that the main meta is a somewhat different site, with its own culture. Things that get attention might not necessarily be the most useful from the user experience point of view. Jun 15, 2021 at 19:28

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