I opened a question and was marked as duplicate.
But what I find surprising is that some users actually deleted my question!

Why is this allowed? From my perspective the linked question does not really have any clear answers (for me) and having the comments in my post, help me understand the topic more by combining everything.

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    $\begingroup$ Why is it not allowed though? I can't imagine what MSE would look like if post can't be deleted (Note that users with enough reps can also un-delete posts) $\endgroup$ Jun 8, 2021 at 17:26
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    $\begingroup$ If you don't understand the answers in the linked question, that's fine. You could then ask a new question which says what you do not understand about (one of) these answers and asks for clarification. Alternatively, you could ask for clarification in a comment to one of those answers (all three users are, I believe, currently active and in fact one was the user who closed your question as a duplicate - so each should respond to a concrete+reasonable question). $\endgroup$
    – user1729
    Jun 8, 2021 at 17:56
  • $\begingroup$ @ArcticChar: I would expect that the process would be to ask me to delete it that's all. $\endgroup$
    – Jim
    Jun 8, 2021 at 18:08
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    $\begingroup$ You were not asked whether you agreed it was a duplicate; why would the further step require your acquiescence? Note that you can request both that a question be re-opened and that a question be undeleted, if you can make a suitable case for it: this is the place for it. $\endgroup$ Jun 8, 2021 at 19:43
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    $\begingroup$ Does this answer your question? Requests for Reopen & Undeletion Votes (volume 01/2021 - today) $\endgroup$
    – amWhy
    Jun 8, 2021 at 20:46
  • $\begingroup$ It's done so that the community can control the content on the site. Originally it was meant only for really bad questions, as is seen here stackoverflow.com/help/deleted-questions . However, the way in which the mechanism works the criterion for deletion can shift over time, I think we are moving into an era were being a duplicate is enough reason for it to be deleted. PS. I don't recommend using the link above unless you have a really strong case for undeletion or reopening, it's usually a waste of time, and there are users who check the thread rutinely to reclose and redelete stuff. $\endgroup$
    – Asinomás
    Jun 8, 2021 at 22:41
  • $\begingroup$ In your post, you have linked to a comment rather than to the question. I suppose that it was by mistake rather than intentionally - so I have edited the link. $\endgroup$ Jun 9, 2021 at 4:13
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    $\begingroup$ As a side note, there is an older post about exactly the same problem: Finding $x$ values that satisfy $x+4\mid2x$. In can be found both with Approach Zero and SearchOnMath. Some general advice on searching can be found here: How to search on this site? $\endgroup$ Jun 9, 2021 at 5:11
  • $\begingroup$ @MartinSleziak: That SearchOnMath seems really useful! Thanks for sharing that, I didn't know about it! $\endgroup$
    – Jim
    Jun 9, 2021 at 8:22
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    $\begingroup$ I can't wrap my head around why this post was closed as duplicate and deleted. Deletion to me should be reserved for negative behaviors, not giving someone double secret probation for unknown reasons who is otherwise behaving normally by site rules. $\endgroup$ Jun 9, 2021 at 12:24
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ The post is un-deleted. $\endgroup$ Jun 9, 2021 at 17:20

1 Answer 1


I'm somewhat sympathetic to your surprise, first at having your Question marked as a duplicate of an apparently different problem (in this case by a "golden hammer wielding" single user), and then at having your Question deleted. I've upvoted your meta Question accordingly.

There is a commonality of technique in solving your problem and the one it was marked as a duplicate of. No doubt this motivated the user who closed it accordingly. What that technique amounts to was pointed out in the first Comment on your Question, and you did not immediately grasp the logic behind it. In an ideal world the user who closed your Question would have left an even more elaborate Comment explaining the reasoning that connects the problems, and he did leave a terse Comment. Other users also tried to fill in the gap for you.

That said, there is enough subtlety to that reasoning that it would bear examination with a new Question, if you were so inclined to explore why the technique works and what is required for it to succeed. You could give links to both your (now deleted Question) and to its dup-target for context.

Now let's discuss briefly the logic of deleting your (now closed-as-duplicate) Question. This was a decision taken by more than one user, as a review of that Question's timeline will show you. I shouldn't try to speak for those three users, but I do see a problem with how you went about presenting the problem. You did explain your idea of which solutions are possible with a diagram, but a simpler solution method (trying small values of $x$) might have alerted you to the shortcomings of that approach.

If you wanted to "revive" your original Question, I'd be happy to consider voting to reopen after you've had a chance to work out any edit that suits you.

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    $\begingroup$ Thank you very much for your feedback. You basically understood exactly my thoughts as all the answers and comments seem to assume that I am aware of something specific (possibly something fundamental that eludes me) but which is not mentioned explicitly by anyone and as a result I can't really fully understand the answers and comments. At this, point I'll try to see if I can improve my question as you suggest and possibly open a different question. $\endgroup$
    – Jim
    Jun 8, 2021 at 21:00

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