What differentiates anime from regular cartoons? has been closed twice as off-topic and reopened both times, and hasn't changed much over that period. Rather than vote to close it again (and eventually reopen it again), I think we should discuss here on meta why we think it should be considered on- or off-topic. Since the site's scope isn't yet set in stone, presumably these correspond to different viewpoints of what should/should not be considered off-topic. If people enunciate these more clearly, I think it's likely that we'll come to some sort of consensus.

I don't really have an opinion either way, but I don't think it's beneficial for the site in the long run to keep closing and reopening the question without discussing why.

  • I've enunciated my opinions on the comments right below the question. I think that it is on-topic, provided that the answerer is careful in the subjectiveness of his answer. And btw, I think it suffered some changes: initially it asked for more subjective answers, now it asks for more technical ones. IMO!
    – JNat StaffMod
    Commented Dec 13, 2012 at 20:07
  • As someone who cast the initial close vote on the question in its original state, I just wanted to state for the record that I agree it should remain open now. As such, I'm going to delete my original comment I left about it, as it no longer applies to the question in its current form. Hopefully, that will help lessen confusion.
    – FAE
    Commented Dec 14, 2012 at 17:33

1 Answer 1


First of all, look at the revision history. The question was posted, then revision 3 fixed some grammar errors, and the question was closed. After that it was reopened and closed again. However, between the first closing, the reopening, and the second closing, no meaningful changes were made to the post. Really, none at all, just re-tagging. Finally, the question is now reopened after being rephrased and re-titled.

Why did this happen? No mystery at all. The original question title was How do you explain your friends that anime is different from cartoon?. Is it a good title for a QA site? Definitely not. It implies debate, because everyone has different friends and will use different ways to persuade them. In this form, there was no way to give a reasonable and fact-supported answer.

Now, at the last revision (rev. 7 at the moment), the title is What differentiates anime from regular cartoons?, and the question (after being rephrased) asks exactly this. The differences between anime and cartoons. Can it be answered now? Absolutely. There clearly are differences between anime and cartoons, otherwise there would have been no differentiation between them. So in this form, the question can be answered, thus it was reopened. The amount of votes for both the question and the answers also suggest that the community likes them.

Basically, this process is not unique: many questions start in a bad shape, get down-voted, closed, then edited and reopened (maybe multiply times). There's nothing wrong with it really, that is why the reopening feature is there: to give the opportunity to improve the question.

  • 1
    Very well said. This is a great example of a Stack Exchange workflow on a question. Commented Dec 13, 2012 at 20:18
  • 1
    Yes. In its original state, it deserved to be closed. In its current state, it deserves to be open. It's a learning experience for everyone involved over what makes a good question and a poor question. Hopefully these people won't make the same mistakes again, but future users certainly will. That, as you said, is exactly how the system is intended to work. Closure is temporary (except for duplicates). A closed question should always get deleted or reopened.
    – StrixVaria
    Commented Dec 13, 2012 at 20:18
  • It's also why the "closing" is there. Perhaps they should call it "pause", because that's what it is. A pause that the OP or others can use to fix it.
    – Alenanno
    Commented Dec 13, 2012 at 20:52
  • 3
    There is not a thing called "regular cartoon". For a Japanese "regular" is anime, and anime is animation, so this question is biased by the observer's cultural perspective and confusing.
    – chirale
    Commented Dec 15, 2012 at 0:23
  • The question doesn't seem to be in danger of being closed again, and as of now there's no one arguing it should be closed here. I think this is a good explanation for why the question is fine now.
    – Logan M
    Commented Dec 19, 2012 at 3:04

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