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I have spent four long months building up the Hashgraph proposal. I have been active in their Telegram and Discord channels, tweeted and retweeted about it, posted on their official website, and have been working with the engineering and marketing team of the company to help grow the community.

We have had great feedback and will continue to get more as the project gets built out. We have seen some incredible questions will have answers to provide shortly after the proposal and commitment phase is over.

With just days to go in the proposal, the mods closed 8 of the questions that were asked and well-received. I understand that the role of the moderators is just this, and the timing is not (and should not be) a factor, but the closures are not warranted and are detracting from people's knowledge and understanding of the subject.

The closed questions were marked as duplicates, when, in reality, they are not. The reason for the closure is a simple misunderstanding by the moderators of the technology in the proposal. I do not expect moderators to understand every proposal, but I do expect them to attempt to understand by reaching out to proposal owners rather than taking away from the work of the people promoting the proposal.

How can we help the moderators better understand the technology being proposed rather than allowing them to ignorantly close it?

To cite a few of the questions that are subject to the closures:


Question: What programming languages can I use to create a smart contract?

"Duplicate": What languages, other than Java, will be supported by the API?

Justification as to why the closure is invalid: The smart contract language and the API languages are two different things. Someone may use Java, Go, or Python to interact with the API, which then interacts with the network. The Smart Contracts are are written in another language and get deployed to the network. Similar to in other distributed ledger technologies, smart contracts and API languages are different (for example, Ethereum smart contracts are written in Solidity and Vyper, while their API is available in Go, Python, Javascript, etc.).


Question: What is the best language to learn for beginning developers that want to work with Hashgraph?

Reason for Closure: "Not constructive"

Justification as to why the closure is invalid: This is an extremely valid question that I get asked on other channels than simply this proposal. There are preferred languages to learn when learning about this technology. For example, the only available language to interact with right now is Java, so this would be a good answer to the question. The person asking may also want to deal with Smart Contracts, so he may want to learn Solidity. There are a number of languages that cover different ground in this technology, so this question is extremely constructive.


Question: When will Hashgraph support other programming languages besides Java?

"Duplicate": What languages, other than Java, will be supported by the API?

Justification as to why the closure is invalid: These are two very distinct questions that are both valid. One is referring to the languages that will be supported by the API. The other refers to the timing the release. For example, this asks about the timing of a difficulty bomb, while this questions describes what it is.


Question: How a node can joining HH platform?

"Duplicate": What are the requirements to run a node?

Justification as to why the closure is invalid: One is asking about the process of joining the platform (what website to go to, how to sign up, what scripts to run, etc.)? The other is asking about the requirements (what hardware requirements, what software requirements, what corporate formation, etc.).


Question: Perhaps HH SC .sol code/pattern standards be denoted as HRC / HIP . Hedera Improvement Proposal

Reason for Closure: "Not a real question"

Justification as to why the closure is invalid: While this is a valid reason for closure, a simple edit to the wording of the question would have been infinitely more beneficial to the proposal (not having a question versus having a well formatted question). I suggested the wording update on September 4th and would have hoped that this would be updated, not closed.

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You are correct that some of these questions may not technically be closed as an "exact duplicate" on the actual site — but for the purpose of presenting the strongest possible Definition for this proposal, the linked questions generally cover much the same topic space, even if they're not technically exact duplicates.

Why "Top Example Questions" Matter

When a proposal nears the end of its "Definition" phase, it's about to undergo a final review by the Community Team to see if it should continue on towards becoming a Stack Exchange site. At this stage, it would be unwise to bulk up your "top example questions" with questions which do not add to your scope. Unfortunately, if the viability or breadth of a proposal comes into question, it is not physically possible for us to go back and "Let them fix that {problem} in Definition later." Once the proposal goes into "Commitment", there's no way to go back. It's a known short-coming in the process, but it IS a binary decision we have to live with — "pass" or "close".

That's why I spend so much time trying to assure we're not going to end up on the wrong end of a problem. There are only 40 example questions to justify the entire need for this site. That is why I combine similar questions before the proposal goes into final evaluation… to present the strongest possible case for creating this site.

  • I understand and can see both sides of the story. Given the process as it stands, is there an additional amount of time granted after the final review? We were on pace to hit the 40 questions mark, but we no longer are and likely do not have time to ramp up operations to do so. Had we known a month ago we would have adjusted our strategy. – shane Dec 10 '18 at 22:04
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    @shane I was in the process of looking into some of the issues you raised when you posted this... so I was able to reopen a few of the questions on their merits. Unfortunately it is not possible to override the time limits imposed by the system (area51.meta.stackexchange.com/q/28362/…). I know this process is far from ideal, but all I can suggest is rallying the community until the end of the year. Generally when community can't clear these hurdles by a wide(r) margin, they'll only continue to struggle later. I hope it works out. Good luck! – Robert Cartaino Dec 10 '18 at 22:21
  • Thank you for the responses @Robert. It makes sense. – shane Dec 10 '18 at 22:27
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    @shane I would also warn your users about voting fraud and the use of numerous duplicate accounts used to artificially inflate the interest in this proposal. That nonsense will get this proposal closed quickly and get the subject banned permanently from the network. – Robert Cartaino Dec 11 '18 at 14:51
  • understood. I will do that. – shane Dec 11 '18 at 15:02
  • Wait, so it's not possible for moderators to reopen closed proposals? Or are you saying it's possible, but it will be immediately re-closed by the system? – damryfbfnetsi Mar 9 at 20:07
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Few suggestions.


Question: What programming languages can I use to create a smart contract?

It's a list question, see: What is the definition of a list question?

These kind of questions are usually not constructive.


Question: What is the best language to learn for beginning developers that want to work with Hashgraph?

It's a subjective question, and according to this FAQ page, you should avoid asking these kind of questions, as they're opinion based.

Avoid asking subjective questions where …

every answer is equally valid: “What’s your favorite ______?”


Question: When will Hashgraph support other programming languages besides Java?

This is not clear or too broad question. Here is why:

  • It asks for the prediction (what if they get it wrong), so it's more opinion based.
  • Questions asking about specific date can be quickly outdated.
  • Too broad, because you're asking everything else than Java (see the list question above).
  • These kind of question ideally should be asked developers of the project.

Question: How a node can joining HH platform?

The question could be too broad. You can try to narrow down by specifying the operating system.


Question: Perhaps HH SC .sol code/pattern standards be denoted as HRC / HIP . Hedera Improvement Proposal

It's not a question.

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