In Concern about recent closures of community wiki questions the community spoke very clearly about not wanting as many of the highly upvoted community wiki questions closed, even though they would be closed as too broad if asked today.

In response to that, and a suggestion by @blah238 in comments, some were re-opened and converted to the yet to be fully documented wiki answer locks as a bit of an experiment, and that seems to have been accepted/supported (or at least not complained about) by the community.

Today, I noticed that our most frequently asked question i.e. How to Start Web Mapping? had attracted its 28th answer (three have been deleted) and so I have applied a wiki answer lock to that too.

If anyone is concerned about that could you describe that concern in an answer here, please?

Note: This question is asking only about the wiki answer lock placed on the particular question of How to Start Web Mapping? but ...

If you ever think there is any question that has been closed (not locked) inappropriately, and you have the privilege level (3,000 rep) to re-open them, then I encourage you to exercise that vote.

If you have that concern, but do not have that privilege, or if you think an inappropriate lock has been placed on any other question, then please raise that in a new Meta question about one Main question of concern.

Understanding a few such precedent questions (that are not "one size fits all") in detail should enable our community to adjust its close/lock policies to get the remainder "right" too.

Recommended Reading: What is a "locked" post?

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    Tks. I agree about closing rather than wiki locking. In fact, I think we are overusing/misusing wiki locks by removing authorship from post's owners. I take this as a very bad thing to happen especially when used in questions which are not primarily opinion-based. continues... Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 14:47
  • The solution in my opinion is: i) protect questions which frequently receive spam answers from new users; ii) make CW only primarily opinion-based questions; iii) closing shopping list questions as too broad (shopping list question as being the ones which don't ask the 'how to' or a concept explanation. We should test this combination first before engaging with locks. Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 14:51
  • @AndreSilva I don't think protecting questions has more than a minor role to play here because "Questions are usually protected because they have attracted either spam answers or "noisy" answers such as "thank you", "this worked for me", or "I'm also having this problem" from new users who may mistake the site as a traditional forum."
    – PolyGeo Mod
    Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 21:53
  • The answers that I think we are trying to prevent being piled on to questions that are too broad and/or opinion-based often come from those with noticeably more than a rep of 10 and sometimes by users who have been here years but still refer to this Q&A site as a forum with threads.
    – PolyGeo Mod
    Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 21:57
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    I think you're locking Qs that are not exclusively opinion-based, and as stated before removing post's authorship is bad, almost unethical. Eg: gis.stackexchange.com/questions/7077/…; gis.stackexchange.com/questions/63077/…; gis.stackexchange.com/questions/6535/…. Take the last post. We don't want people piling content on whuber's answer; reputation (not talking only about points) plays a role in SE. We should respect. Commented Jan 11, 2018 at 0:09
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    Also, among all posts we have on GIS Meta relating to these old off-topic/borderline questions, the one by far with the most endorsement suggests we try 'protecting' them first. See gis.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/4014/…. Commented Jan 11, 2018 at 0:19
  • Opinion-based is only one criterion for closing/locking, and I think an equally valid one is when a question is too broad. I trust the community to prevent inappropriate editing of Community Wiki posts via editing and rollback. I would never close or lock a post that I thought was borderline off-topic.
    – PolyGeo Mod
    Commented Jan 11, 2018 at 0:23

1 Answer 1



converted to wiki answer locks as a bit of an experiment, and that seems to have been accepted/supported (or at least not complained about) by the community.

And this for example: What Makes a Map Beautiful?

I was looking at that question the other day and there wasn't a single place I could see that I could make a mark. I couldn't comment, edit, flag, or do anything. I dont know if I should be able to do something and missed it, or this type of lock means I'm out of luck. Anyways, more to my point...I never go actively looking in the meta-gis, nor do I really have any desire to come in here and post a question regarding a single question on the main side. I only noticed this post as it showed up as a 'hot post' in the sidebar and sounded familiar to the issue of the locked question.

So as a 'user' of this site who does very little in the ways of moderation, I consider a question with this type of lock, dead. Everyone uses the site in different ways to different ends. I'm a little disappointed there is such a mechanism that seems to make such a closure so 'final'. It seems against the spirit of the community being able to vote, comment, flag, etc.

  • Would you mind copying the content of this answer to a new Meta Q&A titled perhaps "Should What makes a map beautiful be closed, re-opened or locked instead?" and then delete this answer? I'm keen to avoid mixing the discussions about different types of questions/locks (where the community has diverse views) with the specific focus of this question.
    – PolyGeo Mod
    Commented Nov 10, 2015 at 20:13
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    Like I said in my post, I'm not interesting in opening meta questions on each and every question I can't flag or comment on. I'll move on and spend my time elsewhere. Before I move on from this, the 'beautiful maps' question shows it is both lock (by you, June2) and closed (by you and Chris May24)
    – KHibma
    Commented Nov 10, 2015 at 20:20
  • I hope you, or someone else, will open that discussion on just that one question because I'm trying to understand the ways we can handle popular questions that would be closed if asked today. It just needs a few precedent questions to be discussed here from which we can adjust our close/lock policies to get the others "right" too.
    – PolyGeo Mod
    Commented Nov 10, 2015 at 20:26
  • I hope it goes without saying that I greatly value the input you make to the Main site and I think you are expressing a view here of many in our community, but it is currently on a question asked to hold a related, but slightly different, discussion. This one is about wiki answer locks and that question has different circumstances and an historical lock with different behaviour.
    – PolyGeo Mod
    Commented Nov 10, 2015 at 20:52
  • This may be my fault because I just realized that I asked a very specific question behind a more generic title which I have now narrowed.
    – PolyGeo Mod
    Commented Nov 10, 2015 at 20:56
  • I have created a new Meta GIS SE question about What Makes Maps Beautiful? and I am hoping that you will copy/paste the relevant parts of your answer from here to there (and then delete this answer) so that the community gets the opportunity to discuss the two questions of interest as separate focussed Q&As.
    – PolyGeo Mod
    Commented Nov 12, 2015 at 11:05

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