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This is mainly inspired by this Game Development SE Meta discussion.

Currently, it takes 5 votes to close or reopen a question. Due to our low user count with the privilege to cast votes, it is nearly impossible to actually reach this threshold. So my suggestion would be to follow the example of the Game Development community and ask for a reduction of the threshold to 3. According to this question, Stack Overflow already did this. However, it might take a long time until it gets changed here. In the meantime, I would simply use my mod privileges to apply the corresponding action. Additionally, I would also take flags into account when counting the votes.

Let me know what you think.

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I've changed the site setting as requested! Thank you so much for your patience while I got to the point I could review this request. Here's what I see:

You have a relatively small site with not a lot of people who qualify for the close vote threshold and are relatively active - that sounds like a great justification for this change. I went through your recent history and I see that, while you don't end up closing many questions on a monthly basis, it does seem like the moderators are doing most of that - which is understandable but not super awesome because it puts a lot of strain on them.

Here's a graph of all of how y'all were doing over the last couple of years with handling closures. It was pretty bad, with numbers at or below 40%! That has to be really difficult for a site like this! Then something magical happened... Can you see it? - it's not very subtle.

Graph showing the percentage of questions that get a flag or close vote that are then have their reviews completed. It's 40% or below from August 2019 until August 2020, when it shoots up to 100% most of the time, dipping down occasionally.

... Can you think of what happened in August 2020? wychmaster joined the mod team! :D

Around the same time, the number of questions per month that get closed increased - not dramatically, but it doesn't take much to increase from an average of two. So, you can see that the yellow line representing Moderator closure jumps from zero up to the purple line at 4 - and never leaves... that's because all of the site closures over the last 18 months have been done by wychmaster - often in conjunction with other close votes.

Graph of posts closed and reopened per month by user type. The only line showing much activity is the "all closed" line, which increases from 1-2 per month to 1-12 per month starting in September 2020.

When working on this project, I found two primary use cases for this change

  1. When too many items are going unhandled (not unclosed, just unhandled)
  2. When the moderators are doing the bulk of the closing/reopening.

Because the mods here are casting the bulk of the final close votes, the first looks good but the mods shouldn't be making these decisions - even with other users weighing in. This creates an imbalance between closing and reopening as the mods now have to be really thoughtful about reviewing for reopening.

I sincerely hope that this change will take a little work off of wychmaster's plate while also making it easier for community members to close and reopen questions on their own!

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for making this possible :) $\endgroup$
    – wychmaster Mod
    Commented Apr 12, 2022 at 8:12
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for keeping the site clean - hopefully you can relax a bit now. :D $\endgroup$
    – Catija
    Commented Apr 12, 2022 at 14:31

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