We had a new question asked yesterday that hit the Hot Network Questions list and received more answers and votes than average:
As of the time I am writing this, it seems that the attention has already slowed down.
I noticed that moderator Ganesh Sittampalam protected the question 11 hours ago. I am wondering why this was done? It looks like there were no spam answers or low quality answers posted. Is this something that is regularly done on popular questions, and if so, why?
I can understand protecting a question if it starts getting spam or terribly inappropriate or low quality answers. But I'm wondering why we would preemptively protect a question while it is gaining popularity when there haven't been any problems. I would think that encouraging participation on our site by new users is a good thing.