I came across this question,

enter image description here

I don't think it's on-topic.

If it is off-topic, How to close it? Which reason suits it?


1 Answer 1


A "photo finder/identification" (who/what/when/where/why/etc) type of question is a research request. You close it by casting a close vote on the question (most preferably) or flagging for moderators attention.

However, there have been some exceptions:

  • This question: In addition to identification, this question asks about the history of said photo (and sports history is on-topic). It's clear that more effort was put into the question (and answer) than to say "I think it's [x]", "Find this [y]", or "Where can I look for [z]" as such statements were the motivation for having source/research requests off-topic on Sports SE.
  • Autograph identification questions have been received well here and are asked on an occasional basis. To make such questions reasonably scoped, background information is suggested (eg, when/where/how the ball was obtained, which team(s)/game said autograph originated from, what time period the ball was signed in, etc. as applicable and available).

In summary, if the question is simply asking us to identify something (outside of an autograph) and nothing more, it's a good bet it's off-topic. See this for more information on research requests.

  • If a question like this -- while certainly a research question -- gets answered, should it remain open? Or should it be closed regardless of it being answered or not?
    – Nick
    Jan 7, 2014 at 14:03
  • 6
    If it's off-topic, it's off-topic. I am not in favor of leaving these questions open, answered or not, as to set an example for what types of questions we allow here. Here's an example: sports.stackexchange.com/questions/3746/…
    – user527
    Jan 7, 2014 at 14:05
  • 5
    Agreed. Google Images allows people to drag images into the search box and it will spit out any matches, if someone was looking for who that was, there's not doubt it would be able to tell them Venus Williams.
    – Nick
    Jan 7, 2014 at 15:14

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