62

As Isaac wrote (somewhat ironically): the best way to counteract this behaviour is to adjust our own behaviour and stop posting answers as comments.


46

There is a certain correlation between that behaviour and cheating: they try to cover their act. Please, if someone removes a question taking an answer with it, let the moderators know. If you want to find your own deleted answers do the following. Go to your profile page. Select the tab answers Scroll to the bottom. You will find a link deleted recent ...


35

Self-deletion after receiving an answer is an abuse of the site. (We're meant to be a repository of question and answer pairs--if someone deletes their question immediately, they're working against the purpose of the site.) Therefore, you shouldn't let the issue rest; if the person deletes again, keep flagging. Eventually, a moderator may suspend the user ...


28

There's a lot to process here, from the question (and the examples therein), the comments and the answers. I'll try to divide this answer in order to organize my thoughts. First and foremost: Is deleting a question while it is still on hold too quick? This general question does not have a clear answer, mainly because people have different priorities. ...


25

I have on occasion re-asked someone's deleted question, trying to ask it in such a way as to engage with the criticisms levelled at the deleted version, and being sure to state explicitly that I was re-asking a deleted question, and linking to that deleted question. So, I think it's OK to do it.


23

You can edit it with a note to say what you're doing, and leaving the original at the bottom so people can connect it with the answers and comments.


22

This continues to be a divisive issue with neither side willing to compromise at all. Mathematicians being idealists of the purest kind that is hardly a surprise. I am somewhat impressed by the fact that hardly anyone is bringing up reputation in this discussion. In spite of our love/hate relationship with these internet points the rep game is a strong ...


22

It depends. Ultimately it's your decision whether you want to delete your unanswered duplicate questions - within the constraints of the software: you can't delete more than five of your own posts per day; and deleted posts can be undeleted by other users, though for unanswered duplicate questions that's rather unlikely to happen. But some duplicate ...


21

Bad questions beget bad questions. One aspect of not deleting a bad question is that it sends a message to the reader: "MSE accepts these sorts of questions". Also, "This is the kind of way you should ask questions." A bad question with an answer sends an even stronger message: "... and you will receive a an answer". Often times, the answer to a question ...


21

Robert Cartaino, Director of Community Development commented on this subject some time ago: No, I don't (personally) believe all previous actions of a user should become "Moderator actions" (capitol 'M') once they gain that diamond ♦. [...] In that same vein, any official actions taken by a moderator♦ should not suddenly become un-official, should ...


21

Deletion on Stack Exchange is almost entirely soft deletion, meaning that the content still exists, but it just hidden from most users. While some data can be hard deleted, this requires intervention by SE employees, and is very rarely done. Even the most vile of offensive trolling posts still remain in the database. Cases where this might happen is if a ...


20

The question was automatically deleted by the Community♦ bot: Apr 11 at 0:16 history deleted Community♦ Scheduled: RemoveDeadQuestions It had a score of $-2$, was more than 30 days old, and had no answer. Such questions are automatically deleted network wide. Your question was never closed, old negatively scored questions without activity are ...


19

I hesitate to give an answer as I am not (yet) involved in this aspect of the moderation (on this site). Yet, I try to present an argument for a certain way of seeing things, and I would be curious to know what the specific points of disagreement should be in case there are some. The thing below applies mainly to closures of recent questions. There are two ...


19

You did delete your answer 15 seconds after you posted it, and undeleted it about two and a half minutes thereafter. For some unfathomable reason, the software shows "deleted by owner" and the presence of an undelete vote when the question is later deleted and the author of the answer has deleted and undeleted their answer before the deletion of the ...


19

I've had calc students make the $e^{x^2}=e^{2x}$ mistake before, as non-associativity of exponentiation does not come up very often in lower level coursework. Beings that $\int e^{x^2}$ is often brought up specifically as a first example of an integral with no closed form, I would expect many users who find this question through search to naturally follow ...


18

This issue pops up pretty often with cheaters on homework assignments. They ask a question, and someone answers it. BEFORE the answer is voted up, the OP deletes the question, TAKING THE ANSWER ALONG WITH IT. The OP was likely cheating, as you mentioned. One way to counter this kind of action is to upvote the first answer you see (usually I do this to stop ...


17

Your question has had negative score and no answers for more than a month: it gets automaticaly deleted by the software.


17

Fragmentation of discussion hurts the site Some (many? most?) of the questions that should get deleted are simply exercises, without any specific requests for exposition on a particular point. As such, there is much duplication as the same abstract exercise (and sometimes even the same concrete exercise) gets posted over and over again. Without cleanup, ...


17

From my experience on Math Help Boards as an admin, I'd say that such behavior is often indicative of cheating. They get help real quick, then delete the post so that their professor doesn't catch them at it (if the prof is even on the ball here).


17

One of the main problems that sites like stackexchange suffer is users who post questions nobody cares about in order to receive an answer nobody cares about — e.g. because the site is being used to solve the problem that the user has an incomplete homework assignment but wants to submit a completed one. If you are not one of these people but still ...


16

Perhaps there should be a meta thread "Questions to undelete because they have good answers" so as to systematically address the problem which was brought up and then solved in this particular case.


15

Testing the waters with: I propose that if the answer(s) can be reproduced with a call to Wolfram Alpha, then the Q&A can be deleted without any qualms. So for example standard tricks to reproduce an integral or a solution to a basic congruence or a (system of) equation(s) are at risk. This would leave plenty of room for teaching methods/concepts. ...


15

The site is community moderated and most tasks can be performed by users with enough points. One of these tasks is to (soft) delete posts, to review these deletions and to undo them if needed. To this end it is useful not to say necessary for those users to be able to see the deleted content, as explained in comments. It thus makes sense to give access ...


15

Moderators and users with sufficiently high reputation can see deleted posts. But the point of deleting a post is for the post to be deleted. Please don't delete a question just so you can repost it later. If you want to change a question, edit it. If you want to get more attention for your question, you can find some pointers here. It also helps to have ...


15

I think you should wait a week, then re-ask the question. If you are going to re-ask a deleted question then you have to remember that it was closed for a reason. If a question is no-effort and no-context, then there is a chance that it is an assessed homework question. Therefore, you should wait a reasonable period of time (1 week, say) before re-asking ...


15

Do these guys have no shame asking ongoing competition qustions? Some people simply don't. Whatever it takes to get ahead, I guess. Cheating has always been a thing in any form of competition - athletic, academic, what-have-you. Really not surprising when you think about it. Do they just think SE as a problem-solver? Some people do indeed treat MSE as ...


14

Personally I wouldn't want the burden the community by requesting that we hunt down cheaters. I think it is enough that people know that this sort of stuff happens and that they can do something (i.e. flag) if they see it happening. In general, if you spot a contribution to the site that you think is unnecessarily deleted, you can flag for moderator ...


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