Some of the questions on this site ask community to code a picture they find over the net. Some of these questions do not have any minimum working example appended. Why do not we have a close reason for such questions? Should we add such close reason to the related closure menu?

Here is the close reason I propose to be used which may be edited or changed;

No MWE exists

Your question is type of do it for me question which does not have any minimum working example (MWE) appended. While your problem may have answers available, it is closed as no MWE is added to your question.

  • When the Powers altered the closing reasons to the current set they suggested essentially 'no MWE' as one of the 'off-topic' custom reasons. We didn't enable that as the 'local' feeling has been that 'off-topic' is not really what's up with these cases :-)
    – Joseph Wright Mod
    Commented Jul 9, 2015 at 14:57
  • 2
    because it's not a black and white situation as we discussed this previously at least four times (as far as I remember) at length. We don't close every do-it-for-me question, it is a matter of procrastination effort by individuals. Once they get old and without and answer, we sweep in the Answer the Unanswered sessions.
    – percusse
    Commented Jul 9, 2015 at 15:26

1 Answer 1


No, I do not think we need such a close reason.

I remember sort of recently that this question, what does this error message suggest?, received a close vote for being unclear even though the question is pretty clear and easy to answer based on the error message. (It received the close vote after Yihui answered and after the OP accepted that answer, too, if I recall correctly. Or, I at least reviewed it in the close queue after Yihui's answer was accepted; maybe the close vote was cast before that.)

Anyway, if we had such a close reason, I think it would only encourage people to cast close votes like this that aren't really justified and/or come way too quickly.

Now, what does this error message suggest? might not be the greatest question on the site, but it's certainly a reasonable question and there's no reason to close it. Moreover, there are some really good and/or really popular questions on the site that do not have MWEs, such as:

So, at a minimum, I think your suggested wording of

While your problem may have answers available, it is closed as no MWE is added to your question.

is not a good idea.

It would suggest that those good and/or popular questions should be closed since they do not have MWEs. Of course, one could reword your suggested close reason, but even with a more nuanced explanation for the close reason, I think it would most likely just invite people to abuse it, and then we would end up with a lot of questions being closed that shouldn't be closed.

I think percusee's comment is right that each situation is different, and so, in my opinion, it would be better to keep the current generic close reasons, which, at least in principle, would force people to think a little bit about why they're casting a close vote and if it is indeed justified.

  • Just as a minor point, I think the main reason why these popular questions you link to have no MWE is that they are very old. The expectation of seeing a MWE with the OP's question has developed over time. As an example, I posted four questions without any MWEs on this site before someone suggested I should (this was in Nov 2011).
    – Sverre
    Commented Jul 14, 2015 at 14:03

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