Inspired by this question, and Ran G.'s comment, what is the "best" practice (in terms of the maintenance of the health of the site) for questions that appear too simple to be correctly asked, but where the questioner fails to reply to requests for clarification?
In the case linked above, several comments were posted pointing out the obvious solution, plus other ideas, all leading towards or directly requesting clarification from the questioner. Given the case where the questioner does not respond with alacrity (a side question is how long to wait?), three courses of action seem to be open:
- Wait longer.
- Answer the question despite the apparent triviality.
- Close the question (perhaps as "not a real question" - though this is a somewhat uncomfortable fit).
The first option clearly is unsatisfactory after a certain point, open, unanswered question that can be easily answered or removed shouldn't be left sitting around.
The second option is not bad. There's a certain argument that what we might consider trivial is still useful to someone (though in the case cited, it seems more that someone didn't even read the question they wrote), and answers can always be edited or deleted later if the questioner does eventually clarify things.
The third option is more tricky. If the question is actually poorly asked, then the "not a real question" option is perfect. In this case however, the question is clear and "well formed", it just appears too simple to be real.
In this case, I went with Ran G. and answered the question, but it nonetheless seems worthwhile to clarify what threshold an apparently trivial question passes before it becomes a "real question".
tl;dr A question seems trivial, answer or close?