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We post comments to posts which lack effort, suggesting them to include their efforts(I agree with that) or informing them that the answer is trivial when they use a particular formula or method.

Alright, it's good that we do not provide answers to homework questions when the person who posts the question doesn't show their efforts and notify them in the comments.

But some users, post negative comments to low-quality posts and answer the same(contradicting their comment) when other users show no or little interest towards that post or their comment. Once they post an answer, they delete their negative comment for the sake of gaining reputation.

Users should stop doing this kind of activity. (My post may sound a bit rude, but this happens quite often in Math SE.) When users are intended in posting an answer why should they post a comment contradicting it?

Thank you!


This post shows that only diamond mods can see the deleted comments and even they have to explicitly look for them.

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    $\begingroup$ To me, your post did not sound rude at all. $\endgroup$ – José Carlos Santos Oct 28 '20 at 13:45
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks @JoséCarlosSantos. This happens quite often in MSE. $\endgroup$ – Ak. Oct 28 '20 at 13:48
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    $\begingroup$ Indeed, Ak19 it happens far too often, and to me it reeks of hypocrisy. $\endgroup$ – amWhy Oct 28 '20 at 14:34
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    $\begingroup$ I can't seem to find the post in question, so I'm missing context, but I don't understand why commenting/answering/deleting-said-comment is wrong in itself. If it were it would imply that changing one's mind is not allowed. Probably sometimes the person legitimately reconsiders how they feel about the question, and revises accordingly. I think it's a bit unfair to blast them for rep-seeking in general only based on this. $\endgroup$ – rschwieb Oct 28 '20 at 14:48
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    $\begingroup$ Voting to close and answering simultaneously is a bit more deserving of concern, since it sends mixed signals. $\endgroup$ – rschwieb Oct 28 '20 at 14:52
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    $\begingroup$ @rschwieb Voting to close and answering simultaneously... I agree with this point. But according to me, if some user posts some comments such as I pointed out, in general any other user will hardly answer that question. But the user who has commented can simply delete that comment and post their answer. $\endgroup$ – Ak. Oct 28 '20 at 14:56
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    $\begingroup$ @rschwieb I will just add that there were some discussions related to this. I was able to find: Should you ever answer a question you vote to close? and Behavior about answering and voting for closing a question.. In fact, there was a related feature request: Ban or delay close votes from users who answered a question. $\endgroup$ – Martin Sleziak Oct 28 '20 at 17:40
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    $\begingroup$ Strongly agree with rschwieb, at least in general. "When users are intended in posting an answer why should they post a comment contradicting it?" supposes that all actions were determined at the start of the interaction, when it could be that someone changed their mind. It could look like a homework problem but be more subtle than you thought, making the comment a little silly (hence deleted) and a full answer deemed necessary. Ofc we could all do without the "negativity" in the comment, even if they feel they're justified (but I reserve that saying "its trivial" isn't always negative) $\endgroup$ – Calvin Khor Oct 29 '20 at 2:48
  • $\begingroup$ alternatively, it could be that the proof sketch in the 600 chars of a comment was not enough to satisfy OP, or prompted the OP to provide sufficient context for a good answer to be written $\endgroup$ – Calvin Khor Oct 29 '20 at 2:50
  • $\begingroup$ @Calvin I didn't mean "trivial" to be a negative comment. And in most of the cases it doesn't happen the way as in your comment. $\endgroup$ – Ak. Oct 29 '20 at 3:06
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    $\begingroup$ @Ak19 fair enough, though that's not my experience using the site; I guess we click on different questions. Unfortunately the nature of the phenomenon involves deleting half of what you claim, so its not so easy to look for examples. I will also say, hard mathematics is frustrating, so I think its understandable if we get spirited comments, from either the OPs or potential answerers (that should still be discouraged). $\endgroup$ – Calvin Khor Oct 29 '20 at 5:15
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    $\begingroup$ A variant is the user who first posts their answer, then instadeletes it, then posts a comment telling the asker to provide sufficient context, promising to undelete. Shakes head. Some people think this is a race. I guess it is a race, but only if you are hungry for points. $\endgroup$ – Jyrki Lahtonen Oct 31 '20 at 5:51
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    $\begingroup$ I have recently (in the last few days) done this: Commented that a result that was being asked about was trivial (along with a brief explanation why). But it was clearly not a homework question, and the poster didn't seem to be able to realize the solution through my comment. So I changed it to a much expanded answer. I have also done the same on request, or if people seem to express interest in the question by upvoting (in which case it is good for the question to be answered with more details than can be provided in a comment). $\endgroup$ – Morgan Rodgers Nov 4 '20 at 6:56
  • $\begingroup$ @MorganRodgers Yeah, I totally agree it's fair to answer if the OP doesn't understand or is in need of some real help in understanding than simply filling their homework sheets. $\endgroup$ – Ak. Nov 4 '20 at 7:21
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    $\begingroup$ I feel like I've done this a few times, but my answer comes after the OP made some decent efforts at clarifying things I criticized (sometimes, the criticism was "between the lines" and not all that explicit). Often I could guess what was intended, but wanted the OP to practice in proofing their own work more critically. Then later I'd return to find that no one had answered the question (or at least not a decent answer) along with feeling a bit bad at what I'd written, so I'd take the time to write a reasonably decent answer (or in some cases, a reasonably informative comment/suggestion). $\endgroup$ – Dave L. Renfro Nov 10 '20 at 19:41

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