# What is the appropriate action when a user edits a post to change its meaning?

Reference.

The situation is similar to that described here. A poster asked a question, I answered it, and then he changed the question to better reflect what he meant, making my answer incorrect / irrelevant.

However, the difference is, that rolling back the OP's edit is not appropriate because after the post was reworded to match what the OP was asking, other people answered the new question. What should I do with my answer in such a case? Simply delete it, along with the comments that it is incorrect?

• In the case of the referenced post, editing or deleting your answer is appropriate, since the revisions/corrections to the question were only made within the first 5 minutes (at least I assume so because I can't see any edit history). The first few minutes often involve the OP clarifying/revising their question and answerers should be aware of that, especially when the initial question tends towards the trivial. – Peter Woolfitt Mar 3 '16 at 4:38
• For the more general case, I've sometimes seen users add a preamble to their answers something along the lines of "The following answer is in response to question X, which is slightly different from the current version of the question." – Peter Woolfitt Mar 3 '16 at 4:44
• I once posted a question, a guy totally misunderstood it and posted a long irrelevant answer. I told him he'd misunderstood, he argued, I clarified and elaborated twice. He accused me of completely changing the question and posted bitchy "answers" to my "THREE SEPARATE" questions, none of which was what I asked. When I asked him politely to just stop posting on my thread, he cut-pasted snippets from old edits as "evidence" for his case, a big waste of other user's time. So my advice to you is: don't be like that guy. Sometimes your good intentions don't get acknowledged. Move on. – Jerry Guern Mar 8 '16 at 1:04
• @IlmariKaronen Actually all three of my uses of quotes above are appropriate, because they indicate sarcasm and irony. My use of the word "irony" in the previous sentence is also correct; as is my non-ironic use of quotes around it in this sentence. – Jerry Guern Mar 15 '16 at 20:05
• @JerryGuern: Oh, sorry, I must've misunderstood you then. Although I'm still not quite sure what you meant by putting scare quotes around "'THREE SEPARATE'" in your comment; did you actually mean to imply that the questions were perhaps not really separate (or not really three in number)? Or was that an actual quotation from somewhere? – Ilmari Karonen Mar 15 '16 at 20:18
• @IlmariKaronen What he insisted was three distinct questions was actually the same question, rephrased more simply and then even more simply, just for him. He refused to believe he'd just misunderstood something twice, and he generated pages and pages of argumentative clutter in an "Answer" that still didn't address my question let alone answer it. The whole incident made me wish we could just Block problem users on SE like we would on Facebook. – Jerry Guern Mar 16 '16 at 0:38
• @JerryGuern Well, I believe if we were allowed to block problematic users, then we would be allowed Ilmari for failing to understand you two times in a row. :) – Alex Mar 17 '16 at 1:15
• @JerryGuern - Your example/experience sounds incredibly similar (as in damned near identical) to what I recently went through on this question. – O.M.Y. May 12 '18 at 5:15
• @O.M.Y. The only difference being, in your case, your original question did not have a different meaning, but just was unclear. For example, in your initial version, you brought up all the software you used, but you never stated what you needed an answer to. – Alex May 13 '18 at 1:15
• @Alex - I am puzzled that you claim "you never stated what you needed an answer to," because it should be excruciatingly obvious what I wanted in the title of the post -- which by SE standards is not just a title, it is The Question -- to wit: "How many bits are required to represent an integer of one billion decimal digits in binary?" ... Has it become a normal practice in M.SE to ignore the title Question in considering the whole post? – O.M.Y. May 13 '18 at 11:28