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I've made a comment that has wrong info (the info is a link that I mis-typed). The only option I see now is to delete the comment and write a new one. But I have problems with that option. The problems are:

  1. I have a reply to my comment that might prove helpful to a future visitor. He/She wont understand anything if I delete my comment.
  2. I believe my comment is worth its place, but it still has the wrong info.

How do I resolve this?

Link to comment here: http://stackoverflow.com/a/5412576/17447

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2 Answers 2

up vote 7 down vote accepted

I would add a new comment correcting the comment above.

That way, the flow remains readable for future readers, but the correct information is still given.

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is that the only option. shouldn't editing own comments even after a fixed time period be added as a privilege to active members? say, members of 20k reputation? –  naveen Jan 9 '12 at 16:13
7  
@naveen - the folks who run the site don't have a lot of love for comments. Jeff has said before that if he could get away with removing them he would. I don't think they will put any additional resources into new comment features. –  JNK Jan 9 '12 at 16:30
    
@naveen, as for the reply: in other situations, changing a comment might be confusing because of that reply, which might be based on the earlier version of that comment. So to me point 1) of your question doesn't feel like a good reason to allow for editing, but actually tells me it should not be allowed. –  Arjan Jan 9 '12 at 18:37

Unless the order of comments is essential to maintain (there are relevant responses to it later in the exchange), a simple way to do it is to just delete the comment and rewrite it with the correction. If deletion isn't an option, it isn't harmful to write a second comment to correct the first, as suggested by Pekka. Yes, it's more comments, but at least this preserves the order of operations while also allowing you to address the necessary correction.

If the error is minor and negligible, such that people know what you mean anyway, it's something you can probably pass by.

A secondary correct comment, with or without deletion of the original, is generally sufficient. If it's absolutely necessary for editing and you can't delete the comment without making the entire thing senseless, consider flagging the comment for attention. Make sure to explicitly explain what changes need to be made - you're already getting a moderator to do it, so make their work easier by stating every necessary change.

Always see if you can just write a second comment instead. This gets the job done faster (so the correct info is seen earlier) and avoids piling extra work on both yourself and the attendant moderator. Only if you feel it is a must, should you resort to flagging.

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Wow, this pretty much covers every conceivable scenario. –  Pëkka Jan 9 '12 at 20:41

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