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If I read a partial answer, should I downvote that answer?

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That's up to you. Definitely leave a comment and explain what you think is wrong so that the author can correct/improve his/her answer. –  Felix Jan 11 '12 at 9:21
@Felix any predefined rules here,because I do not want to demotivate a person's 50% correct efforts.rather I would leave a comment.what do u say –  Balaswamy vaddeman Jan 11 '12 at 9:26
No, there are no rules, the tooltip only gives a hint by saying "this answer is not useful". Do you think the answer is not useful? For example, I hardly downvote but leave a comment instead. I downvote after some time if the author did not correct his/her answer (based on mine or other peoples comments) or if the answer was completely wrong. –  Felix Jan 11 '12 at 9:30
I would suggest - that if the person acknowledged that his/her answer is a partial one, then no downvote is needed. However if the person answering has totally disregarded part of the OP's question then a downvote is in order. In both cases, comments cant hurt :) –  Lix Jan 11 '12 at 9:31
@Felix I feel there should be rule. anyways tx. –  Balaswamy vaddeman Jan 11 '12 at 9:34
OTOH, if someone's foolish enough to ask multiple questions in the same “Question”, please downvote the asker (leaving a comment as to why). –  Donal Fellows Jan 11 '12 at 9:40
Partial answer != Partially incorrect answer. Which one do you mean? –  Pëkka Jan 11 '12 at 10:16
@Pekka I mean partial answer not partial incorrect answer –  Balaswamy vaddeman Jan 11 '12 at 10:31

2 Answers 2

up vote 8 down vote accepted

if I read an answer which is 50% right or around 50% right,should I downvote that answer?

I don't, depends I guess. Personally I'd leave a comment mentioning the wrong part & if the post is edited to correct the mistake I'd add in the +1.

Of course, you have have the liberty to edit out & correct it on your own, if you're so confident.

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I mean partial answer not partial incorrect answer

In general, partial answers are fine if what they already contain is truly helpful. It's absolutely not fair to downvote a contribution that may help the OP at least some of the way. Sometimes, answers are also intentionally incomplete if the OP is asking a "plz send teh codez" or a "fix my wall of code" type question.

Only if the partial answer was given in bad faith (i.e. it is incomplete and doesn't help the OP at all;maybe it was just too lazy to address the hard part) downvoting might be appropriate IMO.

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+1 Sometimes an (intentionally) incomplete answer helps asker 100% though, simply because the answerer understood the question more than the author him/herself. –  NGLN Jan 11 '12 at 10:51

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