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When considering whether a question is worth closing, StackExchange provides the option of "too localized". This is described as:

This question would only be relevant to a small geographic area, a specific moment in time, or an extraordinarily narrow situation that is not generally applicable to the worldwide audience of the internet.

I think that in general this site will not need to worry about any questions being tied to a small geographic area, or being too time-sensitive. However, due to the many makes, models and years of vehicles, and the numerous specific parts there may be issues with, someone could easily see an otherwise good question as being "extraordinarily narrow".

Perhaps this is a close reason that should either be strongly discouraged for this site, or perhaps something that needs to be defined better to suit this environment. What are some ways that we can handle this issue - or is it not really an issue at all?

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We should be careful not to overuse "too localized." It's meant more for questions like

"Is Lexus of Greenwich open today, Sat, June 8th?"

or

"Why is there a green Honda Civic parked in front of my house."

Very specific questions about very specific vehicles are precisely the type of long-tail question that Stack Exchange is great at.

The term "too localized" sometimes makes people think that any question with geography in it should be closed. That would be too aggressive, I think. For example:

"How should I adjust the fuel mix when driving in high altitude conditions?" - GOOD

"How should I adjust the fuel mix when driving in Aspen, CO?" - Too localized, but easily edited to the former

"Why does the California-market version of the Wombet X-200i have this extra doodad"? - FINE QUESTION.

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  • I agree that the last question should definitely not count as "too localized." The more specific the question, the more likely this site will pop up on search engines and bring in new users. – purpleACR May 25 '12 at 18:00
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I think a more subtle problem will be that non-expert users may either generalize their problem and assume it isn't specific to their vehicle, or they may do the opposite, and think that a generic problem is specific.

More experienced users may have to step in and edit tags appropriately.

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  • Very good point, and I was actually considering making another post to address that very issue. Editors should definitely keep an eye out for threads that need to be narrowed down in scope, or which should be expanded, and fix them accordingly. – Iszi Mar 9 '11 at 13:21
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I believe there are some makes/models of cars that are only sold in certain geographic areas. Thus, questions about those makes/models could, in theory, fall into the "too localized" category.

On the other hand, it's also possible that one could obtain one of those vehicles.

This is a judgement call that high-rep users will have to make when voting to close questions, as I don't believe there is a solid right or wrong answer to this question.

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  • Good point about "high-rep users" being the judges here. At this particular moment though, we're all "high-rep users" until the site goes into public beta. – Iszi Mar 9 '11 at 13:20
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I would only close a question for being too localized if it was something very rare, maybe a car that there's less than 100 in production, doing something that is very unique to that car. On the other hand, modifications to cars would make the car unique, but I think that if it can be used general purpose, it should be allowed.

As for geographically limited, I say who cares? If there's a car only made and sold in India, but there's 100,000 of them, let's open the site to them. If there's only a dozen, well...

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