You may have noticed that I tend to re-tag a lot lately. However, I only re-tag questions that aren't closed.

But now I'm wondering, should I also re-tag closed questions? Is this useful? If it's not, why do we keep those question around at all?

2 Answers 2


Mostly yes.

If the question is closed as duplicate or too broad, then tag it properly.

Tags are defined as :

Using the right tags makes it easier for others to find and answer your question.

Closed may not be answered, but we can try to salvage it by removing objectionable content. Sometimes, a moderator or other experienced with site's scope may perform a heroic edit. So, edit the tags. This would not push the question into reopen queues. Even if that happens, you can just select "Leave closed". It's not much a problem. Not only tags, if you can improve title or body than existing one, go ahead.

If the question is closed (and not put on-hold) as Off-topic or "Unclear what you are asking" and question is not possible to salvage the post in anyway, then the proper way is to cast a delete vote rather than retagging. That only extends the life of that question.

See When should I vote to delete a question from Meta Stack Exchange.

  • Thanks for the link! But what do you think about opinion-based/"what should I do"close questions that have (sometimes many) upvoted answers? Do you think they should be deleted now since they are off-topic?
    – Ael
    Commented Dec 14, 2018 at 20:44
  • @Noon Opinion based is same as too broad. It depends when to delete and not. If the question is controversial, better to leave it off and cast a vtd. If a blatantly off-topic or a poor question is answered, we should delete them also because answering off-topic questions is a bad practice. See How to decide which questions I should not answer? You can ask the user who answered to delete it. Many sites directly delete off-topic questions even though there are upvoted answers.Roomba doesn't do it. So, we should do it.
    – Nog Shine
    Commented Dec 14, 2018 at 20:49


Closed questions often are kept around because they have some sort of historical significance or are targets to be edited and reopened.

If you see a closed question that needs to be re-tagged, you should do so. If it's a question that can be salvaged via edit, re-tagging will bump it to the front page and increase the chances that someone will see it and take the time to fix it (you could of course make the necessary edits to make it on topic while you are re-tagging if you so desire). If it can't be salvaged, you should also vtd in addition to re-tagging. Re-tagging will still bump the post to the front page, where other users might see it and vtd as well.

Questions that are kept around via the historical lock are not able to be edited, so you won't be able to re-tag them.

  • Do you mean vtd instead of vtc? What about closed questions who has upvoted answers?
    – Ael
    Commented Dec 14, 2018 at 20:30
  • Ah, yes. I did mean vtd. Thanks for catching the mistake
    – Rainbacon
    Commented Dec 14, 2018 at 20:35
  • Also, having upvoted answers is another reason to keep these questions around, so they should be re-tagged
    – Rainbacon
    Commented Dec 14, 2018 at 20:37

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