I have posted the question Is breaking a verbal agreement to pursue career advancement ethical? in Workplace.SE. Surprisely it attracts both down votes and close votes. And finally this question was closed by marking localized. As per the definition from SE FAQs too localized means

This question is unlikely to help any future visitors; it is only 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. For help making this question more broadly applicable

I personally feel that the situation is not specific to geographic area or a specific moment in time or not also an extraordinary narrow situation. I believe it is one of the common situation any professional face this situation. And it helps future visitors who are in similar situation. However Firstly I don't understand why it is closed and secondly I don't understand how it fall under the category of too localized. Along with that I don't understand what is the wrong with this question and why community doesn't like this question.

Breaking the verbal commitment which has been given under unavoidable circumstances. Is it very localized situation? If so why?

Edit based on responses: I understand the close votes may be due to lot of specifics. I have modified the post and removed the as many specific details that I can. It is my experience that I have been reprimanded by other users for not providing enough specifics for some of my earlier questions which causes difficulties to provide accurate answer. Hence I have provide lot of specifics in the above post. Please review the post and let me know if it had any irrelevant specifics which also causes difficulties to answer the question

  • I'd vote to reopen, but it says I already have in the past even though I'm not one of the previous reopen voters. But I often see questions asking "Is it ethical..." getting closed on here. A different way of phrasing these questions so they're less likely to be closed is "Will it harm my career to do X..." or "What should I consider when trying to decide if I should do X". For example, instead of asking if it's ethical to break a verbal contract, ask it what effect breaking a verbal contract could have on your career.
    – Rachel
    Mar 18 '13 at 13:02
  • @Rachel: Thanks for your suggestion. I have modified the question as per your guidelines
    – Babu
    Mar 18 '13 at 16:22

I suspect because your main question is basically, "should I take one of these other jobs?"

This conflicts very clearly with the FAQ:

"Which job should I take?"

  • Questions asking which job/company/industry is "better" or which fits you best can't really be answered and can only be discussed. This is not a discussion forum, but a Question and Answer site.
  • I have clearly specified my question both in title and in the explanation that my question is about "Is it breaking commitment is right and ethical?". But still I don't understand why this question sound like "Should I take one of these other jobs?" kind of question. Can you please help me to understand why? Please do favor.
    – Babu
    Mar 17 '13 at 14:37
  • 2
    Hi BVR, the question did sound like that initially, until the first edit. So enderland's explanation might represent the state of your question as it was originally posted. Hope this helps! :)
    – jmort253
    Mar 17 '13 at 17:30

I suspect the users who closed the post did so because there's a lot of specifics to the situation here, so many to where it may be difficult to tell what the problem you're trying to solve is. Overall, specifics are good, but if the question is so specific that it would apply only to you, then it's not something that we'd really want to have on the site since it wouldn't help future visitors.

However, I'm sure there are others in your country who have contracts they've agreed to, either verbally or written, that inhibit or prevent them from taking advantage of other opportunities. Hence, I'm not sure it's too localized.

To help get the post reopened, (and keep it open), you might consider editing out any information that isn't relevant to the goal of your post so that people can focus on just the specific problem you're trying to solve. I've noticed that when a post is too long, it's more difficult to parse and not always clear what exactly the asker is hoping to gain from the answers.

It looks like the post may get reopened. As of the time of this writing, it has 2 out of 5 reopen votes. Some edits to make it just a bit more concise might be helpful. You're welcome to flag the post for moderator attention if you've made significant edits to make the post more concise.

Finally, I'd also suggest jumping in the chat room. We have some talented editors who are good at helping clean up questions and get them reopened. Good luck! :)


It is not constructive to ask us to judge the ethics of an action, and ethics are off topic here anyway.

The only way I can see making this question on topic and constructive is lay out the situation, explain what your desired outcome is, then ask how you can achieve that and not burn the bridge with the other commitment(or what ever you are trying to achieve in that relationship).

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