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Your Comment contained a link to an older Question. Although this Question was not the final target chosen by voting to close-as-duplicate, someone may have voted to consider that target the duplicate, or the system may have identified that link as a duplicate of the target that was eventually chosen. What is known is that when a vote to close-as-...


23

Duplicates can be useful. It is quite possible for two people to ask essentially the same question using different terms. When this happens on main, and the duplicate is recognized, the questions get linked. In the future, users searching for either term will find the answer, because the search will hit either the original question, or its duplicate. There ...


22

This is the viewpoint that I have developed after having been at this for over a couple decades in analogous forums (sci.math, Ask an Algebraist, AoPS, etc). One can always find faults in almost any question posed. However, no matter what the flaws, the benefits to the global community provided by good answers almost always outweigh any local issues related ...


22

I think that these questions should be accepted, even if they may not be entirely valid. It is true that many of them are formulaic, include some "life story" aspect, and sometimes may even be called non-questions. However, I think that it is, in some sense, our duty to answer them: such a question could be a great threshold for a person. They wonder about ...


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

Yes, it is okay. More than that, it's useful, provided that the edit does indeed improve the post significantly. Diligent reviewers will notice that the question is still a duplicate [assuming it wasn't incorrectly marked as a duplicate of course] and vote to "Leave Closed". Then you trade a few minutes of reviewing time for three reviewers against a ...


19

There are so many questions; plenty of things just fall through the cracks. When you come across clear-cut old duplicates flag/vote one of them as such. (Click "flag" select "a duplicate" etc.) Which one you flag is in a way up to you. Generally, one will want to give most visibility to the subjectively best thread, so flag the other one.


18

There are many thousands questions on the site, and it's not always easy to find the duplicates. When you do find one, feel free to flag it (or vote to close it) as a duplicate, even if it's old.


18

Yes. It does. It helps to sort the site, it helps to point people to more answers, and it helps to signal that perhaps one should search the site before posting a question.


17

Leave a link to A at B, and a link to B at A, with a brief explanation at each. Don't close anything, and don't chnage the old answer.


17

I think the idea is that if the older question has no upvoted or accepted answer, then it may well be the case that the newer version has done a better job of asking the question, in which case it would be preferable to close the older one as a duplicate of the newer one. This view is expressed by Gilles. I think this motivation is reasonable. Many are ...


17

Yes, there is such a banner, visible only to the OP. An example of this banner is embedded in the question Automatic insertion of dupe-banner after just one close vote is vulnerable to abuse. It appears after a duplicate vote or flag has been cast on the question. Once upon a time, this "pre-closure banner" was visible to everyone, but after the ...


16

The bad news is that there is no foolproof way to find duplicates. The good news is that the standard for being a good community member is not perfection. It sounds like you're making an effort to avoid posting duplicates and, moreover, like you've gotten better. I don't think anyone can ask you to do more. That said, if you're really intent on finding ...


15

My opinion is that questions should only be marked as duplicate only if they are on the same site. For example, if the same question is asked on the site for professional linguists and on the site for English language learners, it requires different answers and different level of detail. Perhaps the difference between MO and MSE is not that big, but there ...


15

The loops are still possible. Look at this two questions (by the same author, but that's not really important; timing is the key): https://math.stackexchange.com/q/604492/78926 https://math.stackexchange.com/q/601602/78926 Being one of those who voted, I can explain what happened: Both questions were voted as duplicates of each other. However 1 got closed ...


15

Yes, you did your part, so feel free to add it. In fact, to make it easier for folks to find it in the future, you can add statements like I tried googling for "keywords", but could not find it. (i.e. add some keywords to your question for easier searching in the future).


15

What would happen to these answers (I assume they will be deleted)? Typically, nothing would happen to these answers. By default, duplicate questions aren't deleted, and unless the question is deleted, the answers won't be deleted either. Poor quality duplicates without high-quality answers are occasionally deleted, but your question has a couple of high-...


15

In general, if you find multiple duplicates and none are closed, you should pick the best formulation of the question to be "the original" (more accurately, the "duplicate target"). It isn't super relevant which has the most answers, as answers can be merged into the duplicate target by a diamond. Just raise a flag and we'll take care of it. Here, "best" ...


14

Personally I think that it would be bad practice to close a question that is perfectly valid, it just doesn't feel right. (This is possibly in part because the question isn't really a duplicate, it is just about the same subject matter so I object to calling something a duplicate when it's not.) It might also annoy people who ask this type of question if ...


13

The second question (with $n=2$) is a special case that may be worth keeping separate from the general case, since it only requires working with even and odd numbers. That makes the solution accessible to even elementary school students. Many students in my undergraduate number theory course, even after working with modular arithmetic for a few weeks, ...


13

Likely the fastest way to resolve this would be to flag one of the questions for the ♦-mods, preferably stating where the circularity is if it is more complicated, and possibly also how you think it should be resolved. Since the ♦-mods can re-open/close questions with a single mouse click, the circularity can be removed rather quickly, even if it means re-...


13

The difference is due to the fact that the latter question has an answer (no redirect), while the former does not have one (redirect). The rationale for this feature, added in spring 2012, is documented on the MSE feature request that lead to it Automatically redirect anonymous user from unanswered duplicate question to corresponding answered version As ...


13

If a duplicate will improve search then it should be left. There are questions on the site whose title bears little relation to the general form of the question it answers, or to a number of different ways of asking, but nevertheless constitute a canonical answer. As a result, it is next to impossible for users to find that answer and users ask it again, ...


12

For situations where there's been a clear error (like this one, where ZachL realized later that he was wrong) there is a way to clear the close votes: a moderator can close and reopen. That seems like a reasonable thing to do in this case.


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