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Question: If I get a comment from "From Review" does that mean it has some official significance, or could that be more or less any user?

Meta-question: Whoever "From Review" is, do we feel that he or she should have at least a minimal understanding of the topic before concluding and complaining that an Answer does not answer the question?

Related question: Say user U asks question Q about topic T, and then it develops that U really doesn't know the most basic results regarding T. According to our policies, is it better to (i) encourage U to learn something about T or (ii) explain in detail the elementary results that U seems to be missing?

Based on all the "what have you tried?" stuff I would have thought the answer was (i). But:

Context: Q&A here. The first version of the answer was just the first sentence of the current version.

"From Review" claimed that this did not answer the question. If From Review is going to say that it seems clear to me that he or she does not know anything at all about Banach algebras - if so I don't feel he or she has any business commenting on whether an Answer answers the question or not.

I mean I could look at any Answer to a question on any of various topics and claim it did not answer the question.

(For readers who know nothing about Banach algebras: If you look at the theorem I added to the answer I believe you'll agree that the first line does answer the question, for anyone who knows that theorem (hmm, we should also note that in this context asking about complex homomorphisms is precisely equivalent to asking about maximal ideals). You have to take my word for the fact that the theorem is a completely totally standard part of Banach Algebras 101.)

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  • $\begingroup$ I think "From Review" means that the comment is auto-generated from the review of user MathOverview. $\endgroup$ – Aloizio Macedo Apr 8 '18 at 18:28
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    $\begingroup$ You might notice that: 1. The comment is signed by a username (just as any other comment). 2. The text "From Review" is actually a link to the review in question. You can find links to some basic info about review system here: math.meta.stackexchange.com/tags/review/info $\endgroup$ – Martin Sleziak Apr 8 '18 at 18:29
  • $\begingroup$ @MartinSleziak Right. Of course I did noticce the username, in asking "who" it was I was wondering whether "From Review" implies that he or she was Someone. I gather not. Nobody has any comment on the sub-question about whether a reviewer needs some familiarity with the topic before deciding that an Answer does or does not answer the question... $\endgroup$ – David C. Ullrich Apr 8 '18 at 19:38
  • $\begingroup$ @DavidC.Ullrich I agree that it would be most optimal if the reviewer had some familiarity with the topic, and I myself had unpleasant situations due directly to lack of understanding of the subject from other users (review, downvote or other situation). This begs the question: how would you enforce that? Also, people who disagree with this point of view have put forward some good arguments in the past. For instance, there are some common aspects of a 'poor' answer that are independent of familiarity, so at large scale allowing anyone to review anything may be cost effective. $\endgroup$ – Aloizio Macedo Apr 8 '18 at 19:57
  • $\begingroup$ A similar suggestion was made about editing and closure here. $\endgroup$ – user99914 Apr 8 '18 at 20:05
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Note: the question was edited in the interim.

First, as said, "From Review" is added for prefabricated comments that are added from a review queue. To perform this type of review needs 2000 points. Thus, it is some threshold yet not a huge one.

Whoever "From Review" is, do we feel that he or she should have at least a minimal understanding of the topic before concluding and complaining that an Answer does not answer the question?

Actually, I'd argue that you did in fact not answer the question. You provided some information that can lead to an answer of the question (which is also what you say yourself, it seems), actually the questions, it was a three part question initially. That's not quite the same. If you had at least added that remark, then the situation would already be different. Please, communicated explicitly and clearly (you can still be brief).

If I review a paper and an author says they do not give the proof of Lemma 7.3 because it is straightforward, well-known, similar to that of 7.1, or whatever, then this may be fine with me. By contrast if they say nothing and there just is no proof of 7.3 to be found, then I will say that this not good practice (in my opinion) as it can be confusing.

The same applies on this site, even more strongly. Write in a way designed to avoid confusion.

The worst in that regard are those answerers that leave rhetorical questions as answers. Those then ever so often end up with a not-an-answer flag and the "If you have a new question..." comment. Sure, the reviewer could have understood, but in my mind it is mostly the writers fault for choosing that style that in our context is set to cause confusion.

Say user U asks question Q about topic T, and then it develops that U really doesn't know the most basic results regarding T. According to our policies, is it better to (i) encourage U to learn something about T or (ii) explain in detail the elementary results that U seems to be missing?

Based on all the "what have you tried?" stuff I would have thought the answer was (i).

A main problem is that your answer did not explicitly encourage this. Again, it is fine to base answers on standard knowledge (to be understood relative to the given context). But this should be done explicitly and not implicitly. You do not need to spell out everything, but you should still say something.

Had your original answer just had one other sentence like "Now the result follows from standard results." or some such thing, the situation may well already have been different.

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