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Recently I noticed these three late answers in the review panel. Two of them are exactly the same and the other one adds an additional line.

I'm not familiar with these topics so I can't tell if they actually answer the question or not (so I didn't flag them), but it seems odd that he's copy-pasting things and I don't believe that it's allowed (not sure).

As I was typing this, he added the fourth duplicate answer.

Edit: Additional answer being posted as we wait...

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It'll be easier to just link to his profile‌​. It's at 7... 8 at this point. –  Jeff Mercado Nov 23 '11 at 20:15
    
@Jeff: Yea I'm not going to continue updating anymore. It appears he's on a duplicate answer spree or something. Now at 8. –  animuson Nov 23 '11 at 20:16
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A comment left by a mod seemed to have slowed him down. Or perhaps he's just ran out of questions to dish out the canned answer to? –  Shawn Chin Nov 23 '11 at 20:29
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possible duplicate of Is it acceptable to add a duplicate answer to several questions? –  Josh Caswell Nov 23 '11 at 20:54

2 Answers 2

up vote 7 down vote accepted

If the answer correctly answers the question being asked on each question, I would not object to such cutting and pasting. Someone with that specific knowledge should check his answer and its relevance, though. However, if the exact same answer can answer multiple questions, perhaps we should look at the questions and see whether some of them should be closed as duplicates of each other.


A comment on another answer mentioned this FAQ. The mod's answer, which is not the accepted one, supports treating questions that can be answered identically as dupes but says

Copying and pasting the exact same answer to multiple questions is not acceptable.

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Questions that are asked differently can have the same answer, hence a duplicate answer can be legitimate (provided it answers the question and is of sufficient quality, of course). This is a natural thing, Jeff has commented in the past that it can be great to have the same question asked a few different ways, even though the answer is the same.

The problem that no-one has touched on yet (and most likely what the FAQ is really referring to) is when people go on a Reputation Fishing Expedition® with the same answer - they craft an answer, then do a search through the tag to find similar questions where the same answer can apply, post it, and sit back and wait for the reputation to roll in... Of course this is not acceptable, as it doesn't add quality answers and leads to clutter (and quite frequently with these answers they are not a perfect fit for the question they target, they are just kind-of-close).

I have had to repeat some of my own answers in the past, when I do I usually link back to my original answer, then expand upon it a bit to make it more relevant to the OP's particular requirement. If I don't have to expand on the answer then I post the link in a comment instead (and usually this will also get a close as duplicate vote from me as well).

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