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What story has someone step on a butterfly in the past and change the future, and what is that effect called?

I can see some reasons for it to be closed (as 'Too Broad', per @Mike's comment). But what was so awful about it that a moderator felt that it needed to be deleted?

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    Unless you are only interested in replies from those who can view deleted questions, perhaps you could quote the question here. – Blackwood Dec 27 '16 at 1:33
  • @Blackwood - i'm not sure if posting deleted questions' contents is permitted in Meta questions? – DVK-on-Ahch-To Dec 27 '16 at 2:23
  • Fair enough. I would have thought that re-posting inoffensive material should be okay, but I suppose it's better to be safe than sorry. I believe the question merited being closed as too broad since it was a story id question and the only information provided was that it involved a fairly common trope in time travel stories. Once it was closed, what need was there to keep it? – Blackwood Dec 27 '16 at 4:23
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    @DVK-in-Florida - You appear to have left Exile and moved to Florida... – Valorum Dec 27 '16 at 8:27
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    @Valorum - it's a US thing. Florida is stereotypically associated with retirement here. – DVK-on-Ahch-To Dec 27 '16 at 14:39
  • @Blackwood - i think it should be OK, but given certain past experiences, both experienced and observed, i'd rather be safe than sorry – DVK-on-Ahch-To Dec 27 '16 at 14:40
  • In the absence of a comment from either Mod involved, perhaps you might want to ask a follow-up question; "Why was this question reopened?". – Valorum Dec 27 '16 at 19:09
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    @Valorum - as long as it's reopened by the community (or isn't), I'm fine with that. I am on the fence on whether it should be opened or closed, my issue was the binding unilateral seemingly without an explanation delete. – DVK-on-Ahch-To Dec 27 '16 at 19:10
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    @DVK-in-Florida - I think the problem here is that it's not the first time (in recent memory) that a question has been closed without comment by moderator, something that's strongly advocated by the vaunted "Theory of Moderation". In this case another moderator has reversed their decision and reopened it, again without any comment to explain their decision-making. – Valorum Dec 27 '16 at 19:15
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    @Valorum - reopening without a comment is less damaging than closing (although I agree, with comment is always better) – DVK-on-Ahch-To Dec 27 '16 at 19:19
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    @DVK-in-Florida - And now it's been mod-reopened as well. This Q is the train wreck that won't end. – Valorum Dec 27 '16 at 21:24
  • @DVK-in-Florida so are YOU that infamous "Florida Man" I keep hearing about?!?! – corsiKa Jan 1 '17 at 6:53
  • @corsiKa - I must admit to having no clue as to what you're referring to. But since Florida for me is merely symbolic and not literal, presumably, no. – DVK-on-Ahch-To Jan 1 '17 at 7:00
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    @corsiKa - ah no. I do my own crazy things, thankyouverymuch :) – DVK-on-Ahch-To Jan 1 '17 at 7:03
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Update #2

The question has now been mod-hammered open by moderator Thaddeus Howze.

Update #1

The question, having initially been deleted by moderator Thaddeus Howze, has now been undeleted by another moderator, Kevin.

As yet there has been no explanation from either mod to justify the initial deletion, nor the decision to undelete.


This question should not have been deleted.

A brief look at the timeline and edit history would suggest that the OP, not having read the tour (I'm scowling at you, OP) posted a meandering question that was actually in three parts. Two of these questions were story identification questions, the third was a more general "What is this kind of paradox called?" question. It was rightly closed as 'Too Broad' because it doesn't have a single coherent question.

The OP then made an edit to remove one of the story-ident elements leaving two questions, one about paradoxes in fiction, the other a story-ident question. For some reason, the question then began attracting reopen votes.

At this point a moderator deleted the question. I'm unsure why they took this action but since the question is neither unsalvageable (a very quick edit would remove one of the questions), nor contains inappropriate language there really isn't a good reason to delete an already closed question, one that the OP is in the process of fixing.

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    @RandalThor - Cheers for the edit. Don't drink and drive, kids. – Valorum Dec 27 '16 at 21:08
  • A note on the reopening (not the undeletion): Thaddeus was one of four reopen-voters - fewer than would be needed without mod intervention, but he wasn't acting unilaterally either. – Rand al'Thor Dec 27 '16 at 21:39
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    @Randal'Thor - And while that's true, the fact that he deleted it, didn't undelete it, then mod-opened it is just a truly bizarre chain of events. – Valorum Dec 27 '16 at 22:15
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Talking as the guilty party in the question, I had seen/read two or more stories which seemed to have a similar trope. Now I was handicapped because I knew what the trope is about but didn't know what it is called. To add to that, as I had read/seen those stories/movies far apart I wasn't able to fully remember the details.

So now, I'm in a fix how to describe the trope as well as how to figure about those stories as for me they both went hand-to-hand. I didn't mind the fact that I got hammered but was much more excited and thrilled as I learnt two-three similar tropes which are used in science fiction. For e.g. the "timeline split plus butterfly effect" and the other points raised by Lserni were really cool.

As far as the tour is concerned, I took it twice and the ones it is at the fence are about -

a. List of works with a particular plot element

b. Or any other question with too many possible answers or that would require an extremely long answer

Now as a questionaire, sometimes it makes it pretty difficult to know which questions are broad and which aren't. One of the things that the site tour doesn't tell or cherish is "Assume good faith" . If this was part of the tour then it wouldn't have caused as much heartburn as it did to both sides.

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    At the time you hadn't read the tour; scifi.stackexchange.com/help/badges/105/informed?userid=33101 – Valorum Dec 28 '16 at 15:53
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    For the record, this meta question isn't actually about your question (except tangentially), it's about why site moderators Thaddeus Howze and Kevin took the actions they took. – Valorum Dec 28 '16 at 15:54
  • As to whether your ]question/s were appropriate, the answer is yes, yes, yes and no. Yes to "What story is this(1)?", Yes to "What story is this(2)?", yes to "What is the name of this trope?" and no to "What other stories include this trope?" – Valorum Dec 28 '16 at 15:56
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I was one of the people who originally voted to close the question as "too broad". I did so because it was asking for the name of a movie, and the only identifying information provided was that it featured a rather common sci fi trope. In other words it seemed to me to be too broad.

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    Sorry, the question was about binding moderator action of deletion specifically, not about community VTC (which is reasonably obvious as to "why") – DVK-on-Ahch-To Jan 3 '17 at 11:52
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    To echo DVK, I think we're in broad agreement that it should have been closed, the question is why a moderator chose to delete it, especially after they'd used their mod powers to reopen it shortly before. – Valorum Jan 3 '17 at 14:42

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