Questions tagged [policy]

for questions on Mathematics Stack Exchange policies

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28
votes
4answers
1k views

Should we ask for Question Quotas like those that have been available for the big three?

Our site is growing quite rapidly: currently each day there are about 150 new questions asked about 250 new answers posted about 150 edits made to posts. Each of the above actions changes the front ...
19
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2answers
788 views

Posting multiple questions as one?

It often happens that (usually somewhat inexperienced) users post several questions on more or less related themes as one single question. To give a stylized example, someone may ask: Which of the ...
19
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8answers
3k views

How can I ask a good question? [duplicate]

MathOverflow has an excellent guide on how to write a good question. Another great guide exists on meta.stackoverflow. We will probably want our own site-specific guide on how to ask good questions. ...
34
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5answers
3k views

What do we do with users who post numerous unlabeled homework questions?

User student has, quite impressively, recognized that all of user6560's questions are homework questions from the ongoing course Math 620 at the University of Buffalo. I just went through, downvoted ...
7
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5answers
517 views

What questions should be community wiki?

Under what circumstances should a question be made community wiki? Probably any question asking for a list of something (e.g. 1) must be CW. What else? What about questions asking for a list of ...
88
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6answers
5k views

Is there an MSE-like site that is more pleasant to work in? Or are there other solutions?

The Problem: It becomes more difficult to help people on a site in which there is mass closing of questions. And I am disturbed that a small group of people is engaged in trying to delete permanently ...
23
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3answers
2k views

Centralized solutions to textbook problems considered harmful?

Recently I've been toying with the idea of going through Crandall and Pomerance's Prime Numbers: A Computational Perspective cover-to-cover, to the best of my ability. However, it's a very difficult ...
16
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3answers
1k views

Can a down/up votes be accompanied by a comment?

Having been here for a while now, I understand the futility/meaninglessness of this question. Becoming accustomed to how this place works and how much and fast I have learned from the people here, I ...
2
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0answers
258 views

On deleting vs. closing duplicate questions.

Recently a question was deleted by the OP after it was pointed out in comments that it was a duplicate. I was in the process of composing an answer, but I was not able to post it when I finished since ...
12
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2answers
1k views

Community Wiki?

Every so often I run into a question which I think should be community wiki. I am usually not sure about flagging since some of them have been around for a while and the question of why did noone ...
18
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5answers
1k views

Contest questions on math.SE

This is related to this post, please read the comments. What is the usual way of dealing with that kind of problems on math.SE? (By "that kind of problems" I mean someone posting tasks from an ...
51
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4answers
3k views

Suggested Guideline for “I Don't Know Where to Begin” Questions

We've all seen them: posts that ask the community members for help regarding a homework problem, lacking in any previously attempted work. Sometimes you can't blame the asker for not knowing where to ...
33
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8answers
2k views

Answers composed entirely mechanically, e.g. by computer algebra systems

Some users post many entirely machine-composed answers, e.g. integrals computed by Maple (e.g one user has over 150 such answers). Should such "answers" be CW? $ $ Should they be comments? ...
17
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2answers
623 views

The “off-topic” close reason about homework questions

EDIT: There is now a new standard close reason that doesn't mention homework. (No TL;DR, please just read the question.) Background The new close reasons contain a designated option for homework ...
35
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6answers
3k views

Why was “Rational numbers - sticks and stones” deleted?

Could some 10k or ♦ mod shed some light on why this question was deleted? I understand that there may have been a good reason for it, but the error page I'm getting doesn't really explain it, beyond ...
27
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1answer
616 views

CFV: Proposal for standardized meta-comments, to avoid main-site meta discussions

Below is a sketch of a proposal I devised for handling the problem of rambling contentious meta-level discussions on the main site. The basic idea is to have a list of standardized community-elected ...
-2
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3answers
4k views

Can we do anything to avoid losing Bill D? [closed]

Recently I was very disturbed to learn that one of the most distinguished members of the MSE community (my former teacher, and close friend, Prof. Bill D) was suspended for 30 days, under what seems ...
41
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4answers
3k views

What is Math.SE?

Disclaimer: This question is not about PSQs, or "Problem Statement Questions". Rather it is about what users want Math.SE to be. I bring up PSQs to frame the issue. Background: Recently there has ...
15
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3answers
984 views

Proof Verification of Open Problems

Over the past few days, I've noticed several proof verification questions regarding open problems. On one, quid left the comment: I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it asks for ...
15
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8answers
2k views

On the continued impolite closure of questions by new users for the wrong reasons.

[Historical preamble. Since this old 2011 thread was recently bumped by another user, it is worth giving some context. Way back then it was much more difficult to get closed questions reopened, since ...
12
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3answers
1k views

math.SE policy on question from ongoing contests

Triangle Geometry Question That is a question from the Online Math Open which is currently in progress.I would be grateful to know about math.stackexchange's policy on such matters. Please see ...
12
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1answer
836 views

Rude comments embedded in user profiles

I have a problem with a particular user's profile, specifically this line: See what's going on with my answers. They take the hints and ideas from my answers and then they down vote and delete them....
34
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1answer
1k views

Proposal for a plagiarism policy

I have come to believe that math.SE needs a formal policy against plagiarism. I think this should include: 1) An explanation of what plagiarism means in the context of mathematics: roughly it means ...
17
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2answers
1k views

Book recommendations

There are quite a few soft questions asking for book recommendations. Reading some of these threads one might notice that there are answers containing several books at once. As such this might not ...
39
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2answers
1k views

“Context” vs. “your work” redux

Recently, we (once again) discussed the practices of requiring context and asking for someone's work on a question. It has been quite an established principle these days that people ought to include ...
34
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4answers
3k views

Rude and Sarcastic comments

I find the comments made by a moderator here to be rude and sarcastic. Though what the OP asks might not make complete sense and needs to rephrase his question in a better way, I believe that it does ...
31
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5answers
816 views

What is the purpose of math.se; to learn to provide nice answers or just to get them?

Hello to all, I am a relatively new math.se member, and I have a question about the site. First of all I must say, that I have found this website to be completely amazing. No other related site ...
18
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3answers
854 views

Understanding the community stand point on posts about self harming

Now before I state the question I had when I woke up this winter morning.. this is definitely not about me, or anyone I know. Anyway.. I was wondering what the protocol is for someone who claims ...
28
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2answers
736 views

Best way to “revive” a question (which does not abide by the Math.SE rules) [duplicate]

There exists a question which looks interesting to me, given that I scribbled some attempts to solve it and, in spite of the fact that it "seems" like an easy application of Rolle's theorem, couldn't ...
6
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3answers
451 views

Unearthing ancient «not an answer»s

There has been a strike recently of users flagging answers in very old posts as «not an answer». While I appreciate the intent of cleaning up -- in most cases the answers flagged are not actual ...
3
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5answers
669 views

PLEASE exercise more restraint before voting to close - discuss here first

I think that we should have discussed here the question "Integral Representation of Infinite series" before it was closed. Students often have questions about such topics so the replies could have ...
22
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3answers
627 views

Require proper citation for verbatim quoted questions, answers, proofs?

Recently I had the displeasure of seeing a famous ingenious proof quoted here without any attribution whatsoever. Some readers could have easily been misled to believe that the proof was due to the ...
9
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3answers
428 views

Closed as off-topic after asking and answering own question

I came across a question by a new user where he had asked a question and answered it himself right away (since he had read the guidelines that says that this is encouraged). The question which was a ...
6
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1answer
893 views

Is it our responsibility to police for competition/exam/etc questions?

The recent posts about assisting organizations to help hindering cheaters in competitions / tests (e.g. PRIMES and a Polish Math Olympiad) made me think: Is it our responsibility to police for ...
-20
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2answers
772 views

Should we allow moderators to unilaterally close questions?

At least one moderator has been unilaterally closing questions (e.g. with the first vote, for "missing context"). In the past, it has always been agreed that moderators should only use unilateral ...
6
votes
1answer
670 views

Asking questions whose answers are clearly known to the OP

What is the Math.SE take on questions like Perfect set without rationals, whose answer, judging from the comment, is known to the OP?
3
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3answers
162 views

Should I delete my answer if it is identical to others

I found a couple of similar questions. But don't think any of it answers my query. But if this is a duplicate I apologise and please point me towards the original. On a couple of occasions now I ...
1
vote
5answers
769 views

Proposing a definite policy on contest questions

There has been a lot of heated debate on this issue lately and as a user, I decided to propose a definite policy on such matters: The following is my proposed policy 1) When a problem from an ...
-13
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4answers
3k views

Is this account suspension abuse of moderator power?

Is this account suspension abuse of moderator power? My account had been suspended for one year. As some of you know, some users don't like my questions in the main because I tend to answer my own ...
23
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4answers
1k views

The things that make math.SE 'better' (or worse) than most other math sites

So there was a recent conversation below the main post of When does the series converge?, which prompted this meta post. I know there are plenty of people who are for and against the closure and ...
21
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3answers
992 views

Are we answering questions or teaching people how to answer their own questions?

In this answer to another meta thread, Bill Dubuque raises the following point: We should strive not only to give solutions to problems but also to teach how to solve problems. One of the important ...
28
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3answers
891 views

Should there be a policy about “hints”?

First, let me say that I completely understand the idea of not posting full solutions, but instead "hints" (or outlines) to let the OP figure out the details by themselves. I tend to do that myself. ...
23
votes
1answer
857 views

Mark all locked questions as [​locked​] or [​closed​] in the title

Some discussions, such as the one on annoyingness-of-CAPTCHA, are being locked without this being indicated in the titles. Closed threads seem to acquire the word "[closed]" automatically or by ...
20
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1answer
449 views

«Not an answer» / «very low quality» flags

There is a significant number of answers flagged «not an answer» and/or «very low quality». What exactly do flaggers expect from those flags? I have deleted some answers which were flagged in that ...
11
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1answer
605 views

Can the site-design be improved to be more welcoming to new users?

I think that the design of MSE could be more welcoming to new users. I don't know how much effort it would take and of course that should be considered. My view is as someone who is relatively new to ...
10
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2answers
469 views

Policy guidelines on asking homework questions

Hi, I have noticed recently the big debate going on here about homework questions. On our student support site, for each course that a student is enrolled in there is a forum specific to the course. ...
28
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10answers
2k views

How “civil” should we be?

Our FAQ states: Civility is required at all times; rudeness will not be tolerated. Recently I've come across a user flag complaining about a potentially "rude" post. The post in question included ...
23
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0answers
506 views

Administrative Note on Moderator Rolls

We are in the process of implementing a policy for "absentee moderators" — Any moderator who is not active on the site for a period of six months is subject to removal of their moderator ...
22
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4answers
1k views

math.SE is no reddit… or is it?

I'm surprised and worried by the fact that the question about Collatz conjecture stays opened. Let me explain myself. There were many cases, when different people couldn't agree whether some ...
18
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1answer
659 views

Can an answer be confusing?

By answering the question Does $\sum_{n=1}^\infty\frac{1}{n}$ diverge using an argument of Cauchy sequence I received several downvotes (and of course my question isn't about the downvote but just to ...