It sometimes happens that at question asked here already has an answer on MathOverflow. It has been suggested in the Meta.MSE here that a feature should be introduced to close such questions as duplicates, but apparently there was no sufficient support for such feature to come into existence. I, for one, agree that it would be very useful. In fact, I have my question here to which I recently found a full answer on MO. My first instinct was that the question is a duplicate, so I attempted using the "close" option, only to realise it wouldn't work when given a MO link.

What would be the right way to handle a question that is asked here and answered on MO? The question is mostly about the general case scenario, but I would also appreciate advice as to this specific case as well.

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    $\begingroup$ In a similar situation I asked the same question here and on MathOverflow. After having accepted one of the answers here I posted the link to it on a MathOverflow answer of mine. $\endgroup$ Apr 25, 2013 at 18:49
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    $\begingroup$ @AméricoTavares: Thank you for relating. I would gladly do the same, except I did not get any answers to accept. What's the best thing to do? Post a mock CW answer and accept it? $\endgroup$ Apr 25, 2013 at 18:55
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    $\begingroup$ I posted a very short answer on MO pointing to the accepted MSE answer. And accepted my own MO answer. $\endgroup$ Apr 25, 2013 at 18:58

1 Answer 1


I think the best thing to do would be to post a CW answer containing a quotebox with the MO solution while providing both a link to the MO thread and citing who gave the solution.


  1. This way, the question will remain on MSE marked as solved, dissuading future duplicates.

  2. It is better to quote the text while crediting the author than only posting the link in case MO is hit by a meteor someday (or the link breaks for some other reason).

  3. This leaves room for alternative solutions to be posted later.

  • $\begingroup$ What if the MO question has answers, but none of them have been accepted? $\endgroup$ Jan 19, 2015 at 21:30

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