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Joel Spolsky mentions in podcast #30 that he has asked true experts in quantitative finance what they think about this site, and they tell him that the questions are all "really beginner questions" and that "you would get fired for not already knowing this at my firm."

Does the presence of these questions, which you can often tell get very few up-votes even after receiving 100+ views, detract from the site? Should we be more aggressive in shutting down these types of basic but on-topic questions? Or, given the fledgling state of this site, should we err on the side of inclusiveness?

Based on the most recent questions at the moment, the following questions have fewer than 5 votes but more than 100 views:

These are not even necessarily the best examples, and I think it is hard to pick up the worst offenders algorithmically, yet those of us who work in finance can probably sense whether a question is coming from a newcomer or outsider.

Update: I am not sure if this is a general policy, but it looks like questions that receive a net -4 votes are removed from the front page. A new user asked a question this morning about book recommendations, which along with data and programming languages are listed in the FAQ as expressly off-topic and covered by our canonical answers. After closing this question, it quickly received 4 downvotes. The question can no longer be found from the front page, but is in the "newest questions" list. So if you don't like a question so much you think it needs to disappear, then go in and down-vote it!

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    $\begingroup$ Mind you, those examples are the ones that weren't closed/deleted. There's a severe quality gap to the questions here. $\endgroup$ – chrisaycock Dec 9 '11 at 18:25
  • $\begingroup$ To answer one part of your question: I believe the community needs to be more aggressive when it comes to closing questions. For some questions it's immediately clear that it is irrelevant or will be closed but it takes hours to do this. This situation can be easily fixed: vote early. This may be a bad idea in the long run but for now I think it's OK. $\endgroup$ – Bob Jansen Dec 10 '11 at 11:31
  • $\begingroup$ @Bootvis I actually think the larger problem is with marginally on-topic but basic questions that never get closed. To Joel, at least, it is clear that a closed question is not representative of what we consider acceptable, and neither is a brand new question which hasn't yet had the time to be vetted by our relatively small community. $\endgroup$ – Tal Fishman Dec 10 '11 at 22:49
  • $\begingroup$ I agree that is a problem. However I also believe that a large number of off topic chase the experts away we want. Closing these more aggressively makes the site much more attractive for a first time visitor. Despite some good questions the landing page does not look super interesting at this moment. $\endgroup$ – Bob Jansen Dec 11 '11 at 20:15

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