I recently encountered a Question that was closed as a duplicate of another, but matched it only partly, so I voted to reopen and made a reopen request. Still, it isn't the first time that I've encountered Questions that are partial duplicates of one or more other Questions. By that, I mean:

Question $1$ is comprised of several related questions, some of which are duplicates of questions asked in Questions $2$ through $n$ (for some integer $n\ge 2$), but such that Question $1$ isn't an exact duplicate of any of Questions $2$ through $n$.

Question $1$ may or may not contain original questions.

Upon further deliberation, I'm not quite sure what to think on this issue.

It seems that if there's nothing original at all Question 1, then it should perhaps be closed as a Duplicate, with links posted in comments to the various parts previously answered. But shouldn't the burden be on the OP to search for previous instances of his/her questions on the site, rather than on the community to check all of them and then post links? What if there is something original in Question 1, though? Should it depend on what portion of the questions are duplicated elsewhere?

If we were to disallow multiple questions per Question, this wouldn't be a problem at all. Obviously, if a Question has multiple questions in it, then they should be related, but how many related questions per Question should be acceptable? Two? Three? More? Where is the line?

Edit: As Asaf notes in the comments below, "Duplicates" is used now instead of "Exact Duplicates" for precisely this reason. How close is close enough, though? I suppose that simply depends on the discretion of the reader.

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    $\begingroup$ There is a comment template, which links to this thread. $\endgroup$ – Lord_Farin Jul 2 '13 at 12:46
  • $\begingroup$ @Lord_Farin: Thank you! $\endgroup$ – Cameron Buie Jul 2 '13 at 12:46
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    $\begingroup$ Duplicates are no longer called "exact duplicates" for this very reason. If it's "close enough" (whatever that means), I think it merits a duplicate closure vote. Certainly in the case where half the differences can be attributed to sloppy typing rather than mathematical differences (and the OP has shown no signs of indicating otherwise), I think that a duplicate is more than just reasonable. $\endgroup$ – Asaf Karagila Jul 2 '13 at 12:49
  • $\begingroup$ @Asaf: That change hadn't even registered with me! I'll have to keep that in mind in the future. $\endgroup$ – Cameron Buie Jul 2 '13 at 12:52

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