The highest voted question on this SE is effectively a rant about a security auditor: Our security auditor is an idiot. How do I give him the information he wants? While I do find the Q&A intriguing and informative, I struggle to understand it being the highest voted Q&A on this SE, let alone any SE. I haven't had that much luck on the technology oriented SEs, and have even gotten perma-banned from Stack Overflow, because the community did not like the questions I was posting (I have more questions than answers at the moment). Yet this question seems to be the epitome of a bad question for a Q&A site, especially any SE. The question isn't even about technology, but dealing with the squishy parts tangentially related to technology.

From a meta Q&A about broken windows: "The real problem is that if we allow some of those questions, regardless of the date, it makes our decision to enforce the standing rules against new questions seem arbitrary and capricious."

As a user with low feedback, what is supposed to be my takeaway from this question being the highest voted question on the SE?

NOTE: I haven't finished reading it, and it looks to be a good read. However, I've seen many a question closed, locked, and marked as historically significant but off topic. I expected this one to be such, but it was not when I came across it.

  • I've answered your explicit question below. Is there another implicit question you're hinting at that you'd like to ask as well?
    – EEAA
    May 10, 2017 at 3:33
  • As far as an inferential questions, it's more like I'm wondering why I should go to the Soup Nazi's place to get lunch. At this point, it's pretty obvious that I don't fit in to the technology SEs very well, and any attempts at figuring out why will probably get me perma-banned. However, I figured I would look around the SE to see if this SE could be a good fit, when I was flabbergasted at the top question. In other words, I'm testing the waters to see how Nazi-like the Soup Nazi is. May 10, 2017 at 3:42
  • 4
    Why do you think the top-rated question is at all statistically relevant to what is typical on SF?
    – EEAA
    May 10, 2017 at 3:44
  • How could they not be? Isn't that the whole point of SEs vs other systems? Objectivity and consistency? May 10, 2017 at 3:48
  • 8
    @DanWhaley Being that this is the internet, and anything that has entertainment value can go "viral", a question's (or answer's) voted-ness is not necessarily a sign of anything other than its votedness. If you had taken your example within context, you'd find that the question went viral, had also been linked to by many other sites, and as a result had an uncharacteristically high view count. A better idea about how to ask good questions would be to 1) Read our FAQ, and 2) Take our body of questions as a whole. Say, the top 100 or so.
    – Wesley
    May 10, 2017 at 3:52
  • 4
    Who cares about the most popular question anyway? What you really should be worried about is getting the most usefull and best possible Answer to your current Question. If you're looking for good answers to common questions take a look at Canonical Q&A's
    – HBruijn
    May 10, 2017 at 5:03
  • That question is yet another example why I believe that SF questions shouldn't ever appear on the list of Hot Network Questions. Once something land on there, people from other sites without any real reason to be on a site for professional system administration feel compelled to invade us and create a ruckus. In this case, it went viral far beyond SE. Oh, and naturally, once something is high on any list, it has good chances to further gather votes without this being really warranted due to the nature or quality of the question.
    – Sven
    May 10, 2017 at 10:46
  • 4
    I fail to see how the score on a 6 year old post is somehow going to enlighten you as to how this site works now and whether this is a good fit for you. I'd suggest this site is not.
    – user143703
    May 10, 2017 at 20:30

2 Answers 2


As a user with low feedback, what is supposed to be my takeaway from this question being the highest voted question on the SE?

That a number of visitors found the question interesting and up-voted it.


The highest question on SO is about processing arrays, and yet you didn't ask a single question about arrays there.

The "broken windows theory" is probably more "truthy" than true; in the context of these sites, it's more useful to think of fixing "broken windows" as a way of taking away excuses from folks who obstinately want to ask off-topic questions... Though if taken too far, it can end up with outsiders compelling regulars to destroy cherished questions for no good reason.

If a question bugs you, downvote it - or earn 3K here and vote to close it.

See also: Does the broken window theory apply to closing questions

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