I've made a couple of edits either for enhancing readability or improving the formatting. They, however, have been rejected.

As an example...

https://math.stackexchange.com/review/suggested-edits/738568 — How come this edit not make the original question "even a little bit easier to read, easier to find, more accurate or more accessible"? That question has been closed because of its ambiguous and confusing wording. I just happen to come from the same country as the poster. Maybe this explains why I understood what the poster had actually meant. I edited the question in order to clarify the text and improve the formatting, but it was rejected. Note that $1$ reviewer approved the edit; $2$ other rejected it.

Taking this particular example out of consideration...

the reviewers are also human beings just like anybody else. And, it's human nature to make mistakes. Everyone makes a mistake then and now. Now, one of them might not be paying much attention and do a faulty review. My question basically is:

If I think any reviewer committed a mistake on his/her part, how can I voice my complain against this? Is there any way I can do so?

Sadly, there isn't any medium to react to an edit review at current. See http://meta.math.stackexchange.com/questions/11116/what-to-do-when-my-proposed-edit-is-rejected?noredirect=1&lq=1.


Following what rschwieb said, I proposed a similar edit to the exact same question. One of the reviewers, who rejected my edit before, approved it. This time I tried to keep the OP's wording as much as I could. Yes, you were right—broad edits are not usually favoured (and for a very good reason). Thanks to all those people who helped me understand the reviewers' line of reasoning.

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    $\begingroup$ Word to the wise: it's usually not a good move to include contentious phrases like Pointless to say, the community will first take the side of the moderators. or it's a generally accepted fact that moderators always act wisely. Most of us here are fully aware of the humanity and hard work of our moderators, which is often very good word but occasionally not optimal. At any rate, you are misdirecting your angst to a group that is not really in charge of what you are complaining about. $\endgroup$
    – rschwieb
    Dec 30, 2016 at 18:10
  • $\begingroup$ These are solid points that adheres to the majority of the community. I know it's not a very good move, still it's the truth I'm saying. $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2016 at 18:13
  • $\begingroup$ I was trying to reflect that the community shouldn't blindly favour the mods. They should support them, but they should still be aware of the fact that they are humans just like everybody else and they too can make mistakes at times. $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2016 at 18:16
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    $\begingroup$ Neither of the people who rejected your edit are mods. That is what I am getting at. Making this into an issue of moderator trust into this is not appropriate. Your comments should apparently then be directed at the pool of reviewers, which is a much larger group of people. $\endgroup$
    – rschwieb
    Dec 30, 2016 at 18:18
  • $\begingroup$ Okay, okay, I got it. $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2016 at 18:20
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    $\begingroup$ In general, it is better not to edit a question soon after it was put on hold unless the edit is substantial enough to address all the issues why it was put on hold. A question can enter review queue only once via editing, so your edit would have robbed the OP of the opportunity to improve their question and get the question reviewed (and possibly reopened) after the changes. $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2016 at 18:49
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    $\begingroup$ Observe that the opinion was in fact split. It just went 2-1 against you. Also note that it is a well-known fact that not all reviewers review that carefully. Really, you should not get frustrated about a rejected edit. Other than that I think the advice in the answer is sound. What can also help is a more detailed edit summary. $\endgroup$
    – quid Mod
    Dec 30, 2016 at 18:55
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    $\begingroup$ Some what similar past questions to your (modified) questions: What to do when my proposed edit is rejected? and What to do about edit being rejected for invalid reasons? (You might be able to find some other similar posts.) It seems that similar question appear on meta regularly. However, the answerers usually address the specific edit rather than to question where to ask about them. (The answer would probably be "on meta" anyway.) $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2016 at 20:37
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    $\begingroup$ You've got to learn to accept that not everyone talks like you, and let them talk as they see fit. Both the question here, and the suggested edits, are extremely pompous. Glad to see the person approving your edits did their job. $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2016 at 21:22
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    $\begingroup$ @gnometorule the language of the suggested edit is "pompous"?! I am not well placed to judge, but it seems pretty normal English to me. By contrast, the initial text seems in part ungrammatical, and I do not assume this is done intentionally, but quite simply out of ignorance. In my opinion, such edits, by and large, are a service both to the writer and to the site. $\endgroup$
    – quid Mod
    Dec 30, 2016 at 22:32
  • $\begingroup$ @gnometorule I'm only 13, and I don't see how my language seems 'pompous' to you. (I'm not even a native English speaker.) That question was unclear and my edit was supposed to clarify the text. The poster was a non-native English speaker, and because of that, he couldn't explain the stuff properly. It was closed then. $\endgroup$ Dec 31, 2016 at 10:42

1 Answer 1


Comparing the two versions, it's easy for me to understand that the reviewers felt the changes were too broad. It's really easy to generate confusion, and sometimes unwittingly get something wrong by doing this.

That is why we prefer a more restrained approach to edits. The content was not really the issue, but the scope of the changes was the problem. It's simply just dangerous to rewordsmith nearly the entire question, even if it is semantically isomorphic to the original.

Don't feel too detered by this setback. This is why we have the reviewing system: so new editors can get acquainted with the common editing practices. I'm sure if you rein in your suggested changes to the most critical ones, you won't meet the resistance you did in this case.

By the way, it is not exactly moderators that are reviewing your changes: they are peers who have earned the privilege through reputation gain, most of which do not have moderator powers. The edits you make are going to be spread out among a large group of these people.

  • $\begingroup$ I don't think I agree with you. I'm pretty sure that my interpretion is correct. Plus, the changes weren't that broad as to deviate from the poster's intent. $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2016 at 18:06
  • $\begingroup$ The wording of the orginal question was confusing. My edits were supposed to help clarify the text, not to change the meaning of the question or generate further confusion in any way. $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2016 at 18:07
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    $\begingroup$ @SohaFarhinPine Look, I'm just telling you the way things are: most reviewers are not going to approve edits which radically reorganize a question even if all the meaning is exactly preserved. If your reaction to honest feedback about his issue is to glance at my post and snap back "I disagree with all that," then I hope that isn't a sign you aren't willing to integrate with the community standards. You will have a much better time if you pay attention to feedback :) $\endgroup$
    – rschwieb
    Dec 30, 2016 at 18:14
  • $\begingroup$ @SohaFarhinPine (Almost) everyone who makes edits with the intent of improving a question thinks their interpretation is correct and better. Sometimes they are wrong. More changes means more potential to make mistakes. How do you get good improvements then? You favor conservative changes. That sounds reasonable, right? $\endgroup$
    – rschwieb
    Dec 30, 2016 at 18:16
  • $\begingroup$ I think you might be a teeny bit upset by my words. (You are a person, and the true you is feeling this.) I understand your point. I'm sorry for being a little disagreeble. I'm just 13, you know! A teenager with little control over herself. $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2016 at 18:20
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    $\begingroup$ @SohaFarhinPine I think you might be a teeny bit upset by my words. Nope, not in the least. A great deal of users on different stackexchanges (including myself, I'm sure) find themselves in your position at some point or another while learning community standards. So I completely understand. $\endgroup$
    – rschwieb
    Dec 30, 2016 at 18:22
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    $\begingroup$ @SohaFarhinPine I am with rschwieb on this one -- conservative edits are almost always the best edits. There is a lot of subtle information contained in how the original post was composed, that the best answers utilize. At any rate, this is not a very worthwhile hill to die on: even if your edit had been approved, I would still think the question better left closed -- they admit it's identical to an existing, answered question, but don't explain why it was not helpful (other than, I guess, not being "complete"): in short, it's hard to envision what exactly they could possibly want. $\endgroup$
    – pjs36
    Dec 30, 2016 at 19:01

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