Sometimes, one comes across questions on the main site that facilitate very easy answers. For example, "Is this solution correct?" or "Is my understanding of definition X correct?", but also questions facilitating obvious, easy hints ("What if you differentiate $f(x)$?"). An example.

Some people dislike the reputation gain that these answers can generate for them, or fear coming off to other users as (overly) focussed on gaining reputation.

I always thought that it was accepted to use the Community Wiki feature for answers as a means to accommodate for these preferences. But as @GitGud just pointed out here, there seems to be no "official" information on this (I've searched for it, but to no avail).

Hence (TL;DR) : Is it acceptable to post "trivial" answers as CW?

Also, are there other options available? (I don't consider answering in a comment a solution, because it can keep the question bumping up, and comments are simply not intended for answering.)

  • 4
    $\begingroup$ With over 1000 accepted CW answers I'm inclined to think the practice is acceptable. :) $\endgroup$
    – 75064
    May 8, 2013 at 21:35
  • $\begingroup$ So am I. But I figured it's still good to have that explicitly stated somewhere. $\endgroup$
    – Lord_Farin
    May 8, 2013 at 21:37
  • 5
    $\begingroup$ Yes, this is acceptable. Somebody here (Henning?) aptly called this "Credit Waived". $\endgroup$ May 9, 2013 at 4:59
  • $\begingroup$ @Jyrki, indeed, it was Henning. $\endgroup$ May 9, 2013 at 5:51
  • $\begingroup$ I find this highly recommended in cases that you describe. It helps illuminate answerers who gain no benefit, from those that kinda want some rep for, say, copying and pasting another's one-liner comment into an answerfield, or typing 10 characters. $\endgroup$
    – amWhy
    Mar 25, 2020 at 11:00

2 Answers 2


I wouldn't worry about the reputation earned this way. How many upvotes would "Yes, that's right" get anyway? And how many years of study did it take you to be able to say "Yes, that's right"? Besides, you're answering the question that was asked (which you have no control over).

That being said, if the correct answer is simply "Yes, that's right", why not add some additional related comments to your answer? E.g. "This result generalises to..." or "This was first proved by...".

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ This is what I'd say. If a post is valuable enough that it helps people, and gets votes, the contributor should get the rep. If it ain't a super strong answer, it's not going to get as many votes as a good answer. $\endgroup$
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    May 9, 2013 at 13:05

Marking an answer as CW is mainly intended to lower the reputation barrier for others to edit that answer. I don't think that it is your intention that every newbee can change your "Yes, your solution is correct" to a "No, better luck next time". Nor do I think you expect others to greatly elaborate ("Yes, as the following introduction to foobar theory shows: ..."). In that sense, using the CW marker just to state your humbleness while it has such side-effects may not be optimal (but nonetheless it is acceptable).

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I would hope that such defacing edits are filtered out by the edit reviewing system... Are they not if the answer is CW? $\endgroup$
    – Lord_Farin
    May 8, 2013 at 21:40
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ @Lord_Farin Not to the same extent. A CW post only requires 100 reputation for someone to edit without any oversight beyond what it might get after the question gets bumped to the top of the Active Questions list. $\endgroup$
    – Adam Lear StaffMod
    May 8, 2013 at 21:43
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ It's true that CW postings have lower editing thresholds, but the local site culture on math.SE is much more cautious about editing others' posts without their permission than on most other SE sites, so the risk of some actual harm being done here seems low. $\endgroup$ May 9, 2013 at 6:00
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @Lord_Farin But you get notification about edit in your inbox, if someone edits your post. So you can edit it back, if you do not like the result. $\endgroup$ May 9, 2013 at 8:22

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