I just came across a few down/close-voted questions (e.g. What is the usage ratio of the An-225 Mriya?) which had no comment describing a reason for said votes. What should be done about that (presuming that this is not optimal)?

EDIT: In fact, as of now (2013-12-18 12:40 UTC) none of the downvoted questions has been commented on in such a way.


I fully agree with you. Downvoting is not bad at all, it just shows that we are still searching to define the right scope. But not leaving a comment to why the downvote was cast is just not helpful at all in this phase.

So please vote and comment!

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    $\begingroup$ That just about sums up my thoughts nicely. $\endgroup$ – yankeekilo Dec 18 '13 at 12:23

This topic has been extensively discussed on other StackExchange sites, e.g. here is the discussion from StackOverflow. The conclusion has always been that sites should not require any explanation for downvotes and although in some cases it may be helpful to have comments it is not something that should be required or enforced.

Having said that, since this is a new site I think that the common reasons for downvoting (off-topic question; poorly defined question; dupe question etc.) are less clear than in other well-established sites that have - by now - a very well-defined scope and purpose. For that reason I believe that comments are especially useful during 'startup', if only to help communicate to others what you believe is in scope and reasonable here.

Over time I expect that a consensus will emerge on what is accepted on this site, but I also expect that we will come to the same basic conclusions on downvotes as other sites.


This is getting stupid. Already getting the condescending air that most exchange sites have.

The site specifically said that it would cater to enthusiasts as well. And I have been posting questions. But they are just getting closed and downvoted with nothing productive. For example,


I asked what I believe to be a legitimate question. If you don't like it then make a comment why. There was nothing that stated that I could not ask legal questions related to aviation.

And in general, if you don't like something then either suggest an edit, make a clarifying question, or just along. Lets please not let this become one of those sites where it only attracts a very small crowd of specific people answering their own questions and discouraging new members.

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    $\begingroup$ If you feel discouraged it is not for lack of communication. Users did leave comments (or upvoted/agreed with existing comments) on your posts. Some posts simply cannot be edited into the topic of the site, like the example you included. Others like your other two questions can have improvements made, but sometimes it is difficult for a user to suggest an edit without knowing your intent better. In this case leaving comments is the best that can be done. $\endgroup$ – called2voyage Dec 18 '13 at 20:33

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