It's not an autism vs. neurotypical thing
While there may be tendencies and preferences that make it somewhat more or less likely for certain kinds of people, still, it is not like autistic people get it and others do not.
If you have a certain type of conversational methodology, or if you value correctness or understanding, then you may be more inclined to be accepting of another person's active listening. This is true no matter what the source of your conversation style or other preferences, whether the source is influenced by autism or not.
If you are impatient, or if you value moving onward and forward more than correctness or understanding, then you may be more inclined to not accept another person's active listening. Again, true no matter the source of your qualities, whether due to impatience, uncaring attitude, history of stroke, or whatever.
Remember that the population is not simply "autistic or not-autistic". Someone could be considered not "on the spectrum," as you say, yet still not be neurotypical. And neurotypical isn't really a type of person anyway, as there are plenty of conditions, mental and otherwise, which someone may have and still be called neurotypical by you.
I know of one individual who frequently just does not care what your opinion or understanding of the matter is, one of the worst offenders of what you describe. This person only started behaving this way after a stroke.
It's not entirely a casual vs. formal conversation thing either
Again, casual/formal may be an influencer, but it's not that simple. I know plenty of people who act exactly as you describe even in formal settings.
As a blatant example, on one project I worked on with many safety-critical components (ie: Peoples lives depended on it working correct), one of the lead engineers constantly did not want to answer clarifying questions or to iron out ambiguities in project requirements. I frequently had the type of exchange with this person that you describe, and it led to very high workplace tension. That should have been a very formal conversation.
In another example, slightly less formal but with a more dramatic result with a different employer: "Bob" was known to me for being ambiguous. Frequently clarifying questions were met with hostility, including him making formal complaints multiple times. I once asked why he was following "Alice's" orders when "Cindy" would not approve, to which he replied "Uh, I kind of have to since Alice is my boss." I said "Oh! I didn't realize that. I've worked with you for years, and all this time I actually thought you worked for Cindy. Never mind what I asked a minute ago, sorry about that." Bob was upset that I "questioned Alice's authority" on the matter, and that was the wording he used to explain the situation to Alice. Bob tried to get me fired multiple times, nearly succeeded in this "questioning someone's authority" case.
I have noticed that some of these types of people that fit into your description get bogged down in "loaded terms." That is, a word or term that has a certain definition, but which society treats as special. Like in my previous example, to "question someone's authority" is something that sounds awful. See section "appendix" at bottom for more details.
If it's not autism/neurotypical or casual/formal, then what is it?
That I cannot answer well except to say I think it is influenced by many variables and you would need to figure it out on a case-by-case basis per person. However, that's often not very feasible or necessary. Unless it's someone extremely close to you and you think you can play troubleshooter and improve your lot with a diagnosis, it's best to just let the "why" part of this go.
So how do I respond?
Common conversational tactics, such as avoiding personal pronouns
Some of the common conversational advise that can help you in general could help you here too. Some of it others have already provided, such as laying off the personal pronouns, eg: "Why is it done that way?" instead of "Why do you do it that way?"
While general conversational advise like this can be helpful against some people, it will not always work. I have tried many things to get along better with many different people of the type you describe, both in my personal and professional life.
Some thing work with some people, some other things work with other people. If you want to be the bigger person, you can try trial and error. That's what I do.
Avoid unnecessary questions
For truly casual conversations though, you also need to ask yourself if the clarification really matters. Often it does not.
I sprained my ankle after dodging a bicyclist yesterday when jogging
past the school.
Oh, which school, the one on 1st street or the one on 2nd?
This is not the best example, but it suffices. "Which school" is mostly irrelevant. You might be interested, but if the other person is the type to take offense to such a question, then you might as well just not ask since it is not required to further the conversation.
Take the blame even if you know it's not your fault (Has negative side effects)
For times when the information is important for continuing the conversation, I tried for a long time to just state things in a way where I was taking the blame, like so...
Meet me at the school on the other side of town at 5.
Which school, the one on 1st street or the one on 2nd?
I don't know which street it's on. The one by the pizza place.
I didn't realize there was a pizza place near either of them. Sorry
I'm being dense, but I don't want to end up at the wrong place and leave you hanging: is it
the one that...
Some people get annoyed even at this, but usually they respond better to this. This has had negative side effects though. People with even slight bully tendencies find it easier to latch on to my perceived negative traits and ridicule them. Also, if I keep portraying the problem as if it's all with me, eventually some people think it actually is and change how they treat me.
For example, at work, if I keep taking the blame for things ("Sorry, I must be misunderstanding your system again. Can you help me get it through my thick skull what this part that you didn't mention does?") the other person sometimes assumes I am not capable of doing the work when in fact the problem is the other person's inability to make a coherent system or provide documentation.
Balance it all out
So it's a huge balancing game. Do I take the blame this time and risk looking dumb, or do I not take it and risk the other person getting overly defensive even though I carefully worded my request to not point blame?
These people make conversation difficult for people like us, because we have to constantly weigh our options and decide if every statement is worth saying. It gets exhausting.
If you choose to take on this burden, take notice of the fact that it does not imply you are at fault for anything. It just means you are taking an honorable effort to improve conversational quality, which sometimes may mean you're compensating for the other person's problems.
Sometimes you're wasting your time on a lost cause
For some people, nothing works. Some people just are not civil, so nothing you do will work for them. Sometimes this is because they are a bully, or are arrogant, prideful, or impatient, think they are being funny by their negativity, or have other reasons. It is often difficult to figure out if nothing will work with a person, but if you come to that determination then you have no choice but to either avoid communicating with that person or to just stop caring what their reaction is to your communications.
The answer is not always the same, even for the same conversation partner
People are complicated. Sometimes a person might be fine with your active listening one minute but not the next, or be fine with it when talking about cats but not dogs, or depending on their mood or location or who else is present in the conversation... the list goes on.
What works today might not work tomorrow. So there is also an element of trying to read the other person and decide on your response based on your guesses of their current condition. If someone is in a huge hurry or if you're talking about something that needs to be done immediately right now if not yesterday, then maybe any line of questioning is a waste of time no matter how crucial it may seem to you.
Again, this goes back to balancing it all out. Unfortunately, in your attempt to be better at communicating that means you need to pretend to be a mind reader.
Don't expect help from the other person
Sometimes people are open to meta-conversations to improve communication. But I have found that if I say "I'm just trying to clarify this ambiguous point" (most people are already ticked off or staring blankly already by that point) and manage to keep the person's attention through that point, it's been rare to go past that into "No, this point is ambiguous because... and is important to understand because..." without having people get pissed off or write you off as a waste of their time, no matter how correct you may be.
So don't expect help from the other person unless you know them well and trust them to be reasonable.
Also at this point it's often worth going back to "Is this question really important enough?" and double and triple think on that. Sometimes a question is important, but not so important it's worth alienating people over. At that point I tend to be convinced the communication breakdown is their fault, but don't tell them that!
The "why does this happen?" part is often not worth considering, except in specific situations, so don't bother with it most of the time.
The "how do I compensate?" is complicated. Read up on conversation tactics, abandon questions that aren't important enough, and recognize that everyone is different, and even the same person will be different over time, so keep adjusting to compensate.
For unreasonable people that just cannot communicate nicely, either don't talk to them or accept their nonsense.
I thought more details might help you to understand that I was not understating the previous example.
In my second case above, it was awful enough that HR had a formal meeting with me, my manager's manager, and a union representative, for doing it. They were so upset that I dared to question a manager's authority that they didn't want to hear my response, they wanted only to scold me.
When I said "With all due respect, I don't know what he told you, but he must have distorted things because I was completely confused at first, though now I think I understand what you're talking about. Can I tell you what happened?" they actually said "No, he has complained about you enough times that we decided you must be doing something wrong and we don't want your side. We just want your word that you will behave better and professionally." Yes, that was the response, no joke.
I responded by telling them what happened anyway, despite their objections, and I insisted that I would not be behaving better or more professionally, but not because I was refusing to be good or respectful, that rather it was because I had behaved admirably, respectably, and completely professionally, and that they had it all wrong and were wasting their time, followed by "I'm not being insubordinate, I'm just stating the fact that I cannot be more professional than completely professional."
I must have said something right, because it didn't end up in my official file, my boss' boss did his own investigation after hearing me (before I said my peace, he said he wasn't going to), and he told me later that he decided Bob was grossly exaggerating everything.