# Suggested Edits: Overruling/Questionability of Previous Rejections

I endeavoured to fix two (putative) errors at Induction Proof: Proof of Strict Inequality involving Exponents of 3 in the Denominator. One of them pertained to the difference between "Assume for all $k$ ..." and "Assume for some $k$..." The former instead of the latter had been written as the induction hypothesis, so I was trying to emend this mistake.

Unfortunately, it was galling and nettlesome that my suggested edit was rejected four separate times prior to the approval.

These rejections have been carking. Is there any recourse or solution other than faith in the reviewers and perseverance?

• I would suspect that the users who rejected your edits did not feel that they were substantial enough to warrant bumping a 17-month-old question to the front page. – user642796 Sep 10 '13 at 4:14
• I also notice that you submitted essentially the same suggested edit to that question five separate times resulting in a total of eight rejections compared to four accepts. Perhaps it is the acceptance of the suggested edit that should be questioned. – user642796 Sep 10 '13 at 4:15
• The suggested edit discussed here (which I found) are: 95369, 95207, 95041, 95037, 95031. – Martin Sleziak Sep 10 '13 at 10:12
• Too many adjectives, man. Too many adjectives! – Alexander Gruber Sep 11 '13 at 2:25
• @ArthurFischer: Thanks. Perhaps a better solution exists other than rejection of edits, say an option for minor edits (which I believe has been discussed at MSE Meta at length)? – Greek - Area 51 Proposal Sep 13 '13 at 4:42
• @AlexanderGruber: Thanks. I've edited. – Greek - Area 51 Proposal Sep 13 '13 at 4:42
• @MartinSleziak: I inserted the missing edit into you comment (I hope you don't mind). – user642796 Sep 13 '13 at 10:43
• @LePressentiment: The best solution is for you to learn how to edit posts in a manner that adheres to the norms of the community at large. – user642796 Sep 13 '13 at 10:47

While it is conceivable that people might review your suggested edit incorrectly once or twice, in general, if your suggested edit is rejected, it is rejected for a reason. Users under 2k rep do not have the editing privelege themselves; a suggested edit is only a suggestion, and you don't get to make the final decision. Repeatedly suggesting an edit until it is accepted is poor behavior for this site.

So why were your edits rejected? When should I edit posts?, this meta question and many other questions on meta should help you understand when to edit and when not to. In particular, please keep in mind the following points which seem relevant to the case at hand:

• Editing older posts is discouraged unless the edits are really important, because editing a post bumps it. Even relatively new posts should usually only be edited if they can be improved significantly (otherwise they will be bumped unnecessarily).
• Avoid editing a proof inside question to be correct, because this often changes the meaning of the post. This is especially the case if the user is asking, "is my proof correct?" Of course it would defeat the purpose to edit the proof to be correct.

Different users inevitably have different opinions and styles on how to edit and when to edit, so you can fluxuate a little from the norm if you're confident it will benefit the site - just keep within these general guidelines.

As one of the rejectors of one of the attempts (probably the 2nd or the 3rd) I will add my reasons (emphasizing the points that have not already been explained by Arthur Fischer and Goos).

The original post used somewhat questionable phrasing at the two points this edit was about. But effectively those were just paragraph titles in a typical proof by induction, so the question was very understandable with or without the edit. Indeed, nobody bothered to make these corrections in March '12, which speaks volumes. The reason may be that mistakes such as these allow the answerers to "read between the lines". Here it is clear that the OP is either new to induction (OK, that was abundantly clear anyway) and/or a non-native user of (mathematical) English. Experienced answerers seek to take clues like this into account, when gauging the level of detail that will help the asker. I have also seen occasions, where teachers with a lot of experience dealing with foreign students switch to slightly simpler language, when there are telltale signs of problems with English (wish I could do that as well). I don't know whether that applies here.

Anyway, the only person who might potentially benefit from this edit is the OP, who would now be well placed to learn a better way of phrasing these two sentences. She has not logged in since April '12, so... The (unlikely) future answerers will lose these extra clues. For them the edit was a turn for worse.

• Along the same lines, couldn't it be argued that the present-day answerers needn't concern themselves with the OP's understanding, the OP being long-gone anyway? (The edit is probably still not making the merit threshold for old questions, but it's something to take into account.) – Lord_Farin Sep 10 '13 at 7:32
• A fair point, @Lord_Farin. It does invalidate my last sentence to a great extent. – Jyrki Lahtonen Sep 10 '13 at 10:17