I was reviewing when this question came up for closing votation with 3 votes to close. After reading said questions and the comments I'm uncertain on how to vote and would like to ask clarification (I couldn't find a satisfying policy, maybe this or this one applies).

The question, seems to me, asks for concise information and it is possible for it to have a definitive answer. The OP claims he is not familiar with the original material so he is not asking for speculation but for a concise answer. However, it is true that currently it has no answer beyond speculative ones (we might get an answer in the future though).

So, how do we procede with adequate questions that might have a definitive answer but right now invite speculation?

  • There's nothing in the HP lore to judge either way. The world wasn't designed by JKR to handle this kind of questions. Neither Hagrid nor Madame Maxime received an elaboration on their future lives, which means we have no info to go on, and thus the answers would be pure speculation. Commented Aug 20, 2017 at 15:19
  • @Gallifreyan - but we don't know is a perfectly valid answer.
    – Mithical
    Commented Aug 20, 2017 at 15:19
  • 1
    @Mithrandir That would be a perfectly valid answer to some of the closed questions as well. Commented Aug 20, 2017 at 15:23

1 Answer 1


Leave it open.

As we can see in this previous Meta.SFF question, for at least in-universe questions, questions that we do not know the answer to should remain open. We've got lots of questions where the answer is simply we don't know - What is a Hrung? as an example (my question, full disclosure).

We should not close questions just because we don't have a canonical answer - answer saying we don't know instead.

  • But look at hte description of the close reason: "Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise." There's no fact, reference, or expertise on this matter, so the remaining thing is opinions. Leave it open, and we'll get opinion-based answers, which is exactly what that close reason is there to prevent. Commented Aug 20, 2017 at 15:29
  • 2
    @Gall - that's why those answers should be downvoted, and perhaps deleted. But the answer we don't know isn't an opinion.
    – Mithical
    Commented Aug 20, 2017 at 15:30
  • "We don't know" is an implied answer to most of the questions closed as POB. Commented Aug 20, 2017 at 15:31
  • *shrugs* That's what our previous Meta discussions have resulted in - that they shouldn't be closed. See also the multitude of answers saying we don't know (bunch of FPs in there, but what can you do).
    – Mithical
    Commented Aug 20, 2017 at 15:33

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