I found a mistaken statement in own answer, but the answer is usable (covers most cases). The mistake can be fixed either by considering special cases or by a change (not radical) in the proof that avoids problems.

The answer has no comments.

What to do?

  • 25
    $\begingroup$ You... fix your answer? $\endgroup$
    – user98602
    Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 14:45
  • $\begingroup$ @Mike Miller of course, I work on it, but I have reasons (at least two) not to remove it. $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 14:59
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Likely if you are learning something from fixing this Answer, then someone else, sometime later, will learn from your efforts at fixing it. $\endgroup$
    – hardmath
    Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 16:04
  • $\begingroup$ @hardmath: you can learn the whole history from math.stackexchange.com/posts/1063264/revisions ; but I’m not sure my silly mistake in domain of definition of “tan” can be reused to teach somebody. In any case I worked for several hours on the answer and won’t even think of it anymore. $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 17:11
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Deny everything and hire a team of lawyers. $\endgroup$
    – Lucian
    Commented Dec 19, 2014 at 5:22

2 Answers 2


You have several options:

  • If you can fix the error right away, use the "edit" button to do so.

  • If you cannot fix the error right away, but want to work on it, and think the answer might be useful to others in the meantime, you can edit it to add a sentence at the top saying something like:

Note. This answer has an error (explain what it is); I am thinking about how to fix it.

  • If you cannot fix the error at all, but think the answer may still contain something useful, add a sentence saying something like:

Note. This answer has an error (explain what it is), but I am leaving it here because (explain why you think it is still useful).

  • If you don't think the answer is useful at all as it stands, you can delete it. If you should later figure out how to fix your answer, you can edit it and undelete. (You may need to bookmark the answer to find it later, since I believe deleted answers will not show up in the list of answers on your user page.)
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Regarding the last bullet point, there is a "deleted recent answers" link on one's profile page (answers tab), where they are visible for a while. If I remember correctly, the deleted answer will appear there until it is 60 days old [60 days from posting, not from deleting]. $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 19:01

It is possible to edit posts on this site. To this end, click the link "edit" below the post.

The most natural way thus seems to edit your post and to correct the error.

In case the error is virtually trivial, and you want to avoid the bump to the frontpage, you can instead leave a comment on your post pointing out the oversight. However, almost always editing is preferable.

In case the answer is redundant with another one, you might also simply delete it.

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ NB I added a link to the relevant help center page. $\endgroup$
    – AlexR
    Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 15:04

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