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How do we deal with a question like this: How is Magneto pulling Mystique in the Days of Future Past trailer?

When a question such as this is asked, here is what can happen:

  1. Someone knows something based on production notes and gives a spoilerific answer (highly unlikely)
  2. Someone knows something based on the original source material (in this case the comics)
  3. People start to speculate (most likely)
  4. People wait, then give an answer based on what actually happened in the movie.

Why do we not just tell the OP to wait till the movie comes out?

Possibilities in OPs' defense:

  • They do not have access to cinemas/movie-rentals (location, time, money etc.) and find it interesting, so they want to know the answer.
  • They want to know of the plausibility of a scenario before watching the movie
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    There used to be a "Too Localized" close reason for exactly this... – Izkata Jun 24 '14 at 23:38
  • @Izkata Yeah I know, and now that it has been removed, we need to know what to do here. – Möoz Jun 25 '14 at 0:20
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    This is a very good question, but it could be argued that this also relates to any and all questions about properties that are still ongoing. For example, What is that alien in Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.? At time of airing, it follows your four possibilities. – phantom42 Jun 25 '14 at 2:43
  • @phantom42 I don't mind broadening up my question to include things like that. Ps, do you know why the TL reason was removed? – Möoz Jun 25 '14 at 3:00
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    @Mooz The official line was that "Too Localized" is no longer necessary since the specific off-topic reasons now address its main use case. (new). I don't know that I totally agree with that, but it is what it is. – phantom42 Jun 25 '14 at 12:39
  • @phantom42 We still have one (or more?) open slots on custom close reasons. If it's a big enough deal and enough want that close reason back, maybe this type of time-sensitive question could get re-added... – Izkata Jun 25 '14 at 23:33
  • I only bring this up, because no matter how good the question, or how well received, after x amount of time, the question becomes moot. – Möoz Jun 26 '14 at 0:07
  • @Mooz I disagree. This question is still relevant despite the movie having been out for quite some time, as I don't believe the uniform distinction was ever called out in the movie. – Beofett Jun 26 '14 at 12:25
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    Since we do not close questions for being too trivial, and we do not require people to have read books/watched movies, the question never becomes moot. It may be a poorly researched, or even a bad question, but it's not moot. – phantom42 Jun 26 '14 at 12:42
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I think asking questions based strictly on trailer material isn't justification for special treatment.

Just because the movie isn't out yet (or isn't available to the OP) isn't reason to close, or even downvote.

Some questions of this type have been well received in the past (for example, this question on Ender's Game). The question on Magneto and Mystique that sparked this meta question also is fairly well received, with a decent positive overall score.

Note that a question about a trailer can still be a candidate for closure (although not just because it is about a trailer), and you can still downvote if you'd like.

Here's another example of a question about a trailer. In this case, I actually downvoted, because the question was asking about the OP's speculation, and was somewhat (in my opinion) poorly worded. It still received a positive score.

To me, the difference between the first two questions and the third one is that there is plenty of source material available to support answers to the first two that aren't contingent on likely plot points, whereas the third seems to be (again, though, I felt the wording was ambiguous) asking about potentially unanswerable plot points (i.e. "is x flying in that/those particular unit(s)?").

There's plenty of source material documenting Magneto's power in detail. Similarly, there are source references to the uniforms worn in Battle School for Ender's Game.

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Personally, I don't have a problem with these kind of questions.

The one you mentioned was asked a couple of weeks before the movie came out (if I remember correctly).

As you said, there were mostly speculations as answers, until the movie came out and I posted what actually happened.

So, a "correct" answer can be given, but with a little delay.

The kind of questions I don't like and vote to close are questions about movies/books that will come out in many years like:

Will the characters in a Song of Ice and Fire manage to X?

A question like this cannot have a correct answer for years.

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    Seems like you're applying a totally arbitrary cut off. At what amount of delay does it start to become an unacceptable question? – Anthony Grist Jun 25 '14 at 12:30
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    "A question like this cannot have a correct answer for years." An answer given right now can be correct - it just can't be confirmed for years. Remember though - technically upvotes and accepts are for usefulness, not correctness. – phantom42 Jun 25 '14 at 12:58
  • @AnthonyGrist I don't have any specific amount of delay, but if someone asks something that will be answered in years, then I will vote to close it – Shevliaskovic Jun 25 '14 at 14:04
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    @AnthonyGrist I think it's more about a known and unknown delay. We knew when Days of Future Past was coming out, but "Will the characters in a Song of Ice and Fire manage to X?" has no limit and can never be totally answered in the negative until the series ends and there's a guarantee of no new material. The "can it be answered negatively" aspect does have other questions on Meta, though I cannot seem to find them right now – Izkata Jun 25 '14 at 23:38
  • I think @Izkata explained what I had in mind better than I did :P – Shevliaskovic Jun 26 '14 at 7:30
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Downvote. It seems to me that it's a pretty poor question all around. Prior to the movie being released the answers it attracts are going to be speculative (and they were, as we saw - there was even a fair amount of discussion on one answer in comments). After the movie is released, who is actually going to care about that question? The movie is now out, people can go and watch it; if they're looking at questions on here about it then they probably already have.

Downvoting is the mechanism by which we individually say "This doesn't fit into any of the close reasons, it's technically within the rules, but it's still crap content and the site would be better if this wasn't here."

Additional reading on similar topics:

  • I agree with you here; no matter how good the question, or well-received, it is still going to be completely moot as soon as the movie is out. – Möoz Jun 26 '14 at 0:08
  • I agree with this answer. Although the question doesn't have to be closed, I can voice my own opinion by up/down-voting it. – Möoz Aug 18 '14 at 22:26

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