The following question was posted not long ago:

Causative Structures: have + object + ing-form

The question interested me so I started working on an answer. Before finishing my answer, I saw that the question had been deleted by the post author.

Ideally, I would have been able to add a comment encouraging the author to retract the deletion. Why is this not possible?

  • 1
    Hi shoe....it's open now. Go post your answer, plz. +1 Commented May 29, 2023 at 16:52
  • 1
    @Cascabel_StandWithUkraine_ Thanks for the tip. I'll finish my answer and post it tomorrow.
    – Shoe
    Commented May 29, 2023 at 18:59
  • This seems fixed, but in other situations you can always create your own question and answer it.
    – Stuart F
    Commented Jun 9, 2023 at 9:22

2 Answers 2


The simple answer relevant to this site is that it's a network restriction.

Comments disabled on deleted / locked posts / reviews

Moderators can comment on deleted posts. Relevant MSE post. However, I would use this only very sparingly: there are very few reasons to contact a user after they've deleted a post.

The possibility of extending that commenting ability to 10k users was raised in 2012 but it doesn't appear to have got anywhere. I copied the "disabled" line from a site where I have 10k rep but not 20k. As you do have 20k on ELU, I guess it hasn't been extended to 20k users either.

MSE is probably the best place to raise this particular issue.

  • Thanks for the clarification. I voted to undelete the question and, as I understand it, the question can be reopened with two more Undelete votes. But I would rather have the opportunity to encourage the OP to reopen than to force a reopen against his or her will.
    – Shoe
    Commented May 29, 2023 at 12:01

This is purely to make moderation easier. Though I know you want to be encouraging, there are other people who would use this ability to be discouraging. Deleted posts can't be monitored by most of the community, so any objectionable comments might not be flagged.

Moderators can comment on any post — including deleted and locked ones. I've done so here, though the chance of this user coming back to respond is slim.

This is also why non-moderators can't create private chat rooms or send private messages.

  • Thanks for adding your comment below the deleted question. There are enough poor questions on this site that it is unfortunate when an interesting one gets removed. In this case it would also be interesting to know the reason for the deletion.
    – Shoe
    Commented May 29, 2023 at 12:34
  • @Shoe At this point, only the author knows because there's no other activity on the question/account. Give it some time, and if they don't undelete it, you could post a self-answered question.
    – Laurel Mod
    Commented May 29, 2023 at 14:04

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