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Possible Duplicate:
Should be [Closed as duplicate] questions redirect to what they are duplicate of?

The thing with possible duplicate questions is that the "search as you type" feature works better when you have some duplicate questions posed in a different way (otherwise, people will end up asking them again). At least that's how it's done on Quora (the old question just automatically redirects to the new question with a question alias).

This is a follow-up question to Why are some questions closed and why are some deleted instead of closed?

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marked as duplicate by Cody Gray, kiamlaluno, ChrisF, Pops, animuson May 26 '12 at 1:18

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

Ahem, who says they are deleted? Dupes are usually merged, not deleted... And in the rare occasion of a dupe getting deleted, it's usually for very good reasons. – Yannis Mar 23 '12 at 21:30
@Yannis merged? Nah. I don't think there is much merging going on. They're just left whether they are, arent't they? – Pëkka Mar 23 '12 at 21:32
Oh, in the thread I linked, gnat said "Ultimately these questions will be deleted." at the end of his quote. So that was what got me worried. – InquilineKea Mar 23 '12 at 21:33
@InquilineKea That doesn't apply to duplicate questions. Duplicates are almost always left in place or merged. – user149432 Mar 23 '12 at 21:35
@Pekka Depends on the site I guess... In any case, dupes are more likely to be merged than deleted. – Yannis Mar 23 '12 at 21:38
up vote 5 down vote accepted

There's some confusion in the comments, so let me outline what should be happening as I understand the network policies:

  • All other closed questions are generally deleted (or locked for historical purposes), but dupes are an exception (see next point).

  • Duplicates are never deleted unless the deletion reason is unrelated to it being a duplicate. (For example, being extremely off-topic and not up for migration. The parent duplicate should be deleted as well in that case.) Basically, if it wasn't a dupe, would it still be closed and deleted? If yes, then it should be deleted.

  • Duplicates are merged only if they're exact duplicates and both garnered useful, but different, answers. In other words, the same person posted the same question twice and both got answers before the duplication was noticed.

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Thanks - this was the precise answer I was looking for (sorry for the confusing original question). I've just changed the title of the original question as such. – InquilineKea Mar 24 '12 at 18:21

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