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Recently I have been looking for a solution to build a system with ffmpeg in Android. I was going through Stackoverflow for answers but they were vague. Fortunately, I ended up visiting a site where the answer is provided. So I thought I would do some good and tried to post the answer by providing description and link in all the places in Stackoverflow where the users asked for such assistance. Unbelievable, after a while I see that all the answers I provided were removed by one of the moderators. Why do this?

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migrated from stackoverflow.com May 1 '12 at 14:47

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They probably thought it was spam since you making links to an external site in many different places. This questions belongs on meta. –  jordanm May 1 '12 at 14:44
    
I appreciate your helpfulness in sharing the solution to the problem in several places so that others who have the same problem in the future will find your solution quickly. –  DOK May 1 '12 at 14:50
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I'd appreciate it if you would consider flagging or voting the questions as duplicates (if they are), instead of spreading your message all over the place. –  Robert Harvey May 1 '12 at 14:52
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@DOK - diluting knowledge by spreading it thinly around is less helpful than having one canonical question with great answers. It means older answers get less updates/edits as time passes (effectively an update anomaly), it means that every individual duplicate question most likely gets a smaller collection of mediocre answers. –  Flexo May 1 '12 at 15:12
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Probably for the same reasons this question was removed. faq and faq and etc etc –  Won't May 1 '12 at 15:35
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@DOK thanks for the appreciation. I spent hours for the answer and quickly linked it so that others could get help immediately. My bad I didn't see this coming. –  ZakiMak May 1 '12 at 15:58
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@ZakiMak - post them as a single free-standing answer and I'm sure it will be appreciated. You can flag the duplicate questions which will end up linking them to the one you answered. (Try to pick the best question with the best existing answers for the one you answer). Use one of your existing answers as a starting point and then flag it requesting undeletion. –  Flexo May 1 '12 at 19:49

1 Answer 1

See here: How can I link to an external resource in a community-friendly way?

Link-only answers are the moral equivalent of "I don't know the answer, but ask this guy, he might know." They are really not of much value, especially if the link goes bad. People come here for answers, not driving directions.

If you wish to promote an external resource, make sure that your answer actually provides value, without requiring the user to click on the link. For most blog entries, that means you're going to have to copy the relevant part of the blog entry into your answer.

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Was the issue that the OP hit dups with the same answer or was it because it was a link? I ask because my interpertation of the faq question What is an acceptable answer? makes it seems like an attempt should be made to impove the answer rather than just delete it (or in the case of non-mods Flag as NaA) –  Some Helpful Commenter May 1 '12 at 15:15
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@SomeHelpfulCommenter: The moderator dashboard detects copy/pasted answers and flags them. There are six such answers on the OP's account; we would have to go back and rewrite all six of them. As awoodland points out, it is easier for everyone to just maintain one. –  Robert Harvey May 1 '12 at 15:19
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I'm definitively don't mean to suggest that the OP behaved well or that Mods should be responsible for fixing up link-only answers. I do believe however that your answer here makes it seem like 1) the link-only answer was the OP's only problem and 2) Link-only answers should be summarily deleted. I don't think either are true. –  Some Helpful Commenter May 1 '12 at 15:29
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@SomeHelpfulCommenter The OP has insufficient rep to comment, which is where the link really belongs. Link-only answers by users with insufficient rep to post comments are summarily deleted; moderators are not "convert to comment proxies" for users who don't have the privileges yet. Unfortunately, we can't afford to make exceptions; spammers whose only interest is to promote their blog will always make the counter-argument that their answers are somehow helpful. The user can always post a new answer that meets the requirements, but usually they do not bother to make the effort. –  Robert Harvey May 1 '12 at 15:33
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@SomeHelpfulCommenter: If he really cares, he can edit each answer to remove the funk of link-onliness and then flag for undeletion. We're more than happy to do this. Its better for all parties involved. –  Won't May 1 '12 at 15:37

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