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I've been pottering through the low-quality posts in the review section, and it appears a lot of them are of the form:

Try this: a.b(c).d();

or just simply the code itself:


My personal approach so far has been to mark as "Not sure" any snippet that I don't understand (e.g. if I don't understand the language), and to recommend deletion for a snippet that I either know is incorrect, or that has been commented as such by OP.

However, I'm not convinced this is the best way to do it, and the sheer volume of such snippets suggests I'm not the only one "Not sure"-ing many of these!

Is there a good policy for low-quality posts that are just code snippets, or can we make one up?

Edit: After looking at some other related posts on meta, I came across Jeff's Test, which might inform your answers!

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Usually if you think an anwser is incorrect you should downvote it, not flag for deletion. –  sth Aug 2 '12 at 17:07
@sth you can't downvote from review –  SomeKittens Aug 2 '12 at 19:53

2 Answers 2

Unless the question is "What is the line of code I need to add to do xxxxx?", then these aren't really answers. If the question is "I tried to accomplish x by doing y, but am getting error z. How can I accomplish x?", then the answer really isn't useful. It doesn't address whether y is a viable way to do x (and just needs to be tweaked), and doesn't discuss what is going wrong or even explain why doing "this" will fix it!

Even if the user guesses where they should stick that line of code (and does, in fact, blindly insert code from the internet into their program) and the issue disappears, they will have no idea what the actual problem was, why it happened, or why it went away. The next time they encounter something similar, they will be just as clueless.

So unless a bare code snippet is a really solid, useful answer that is helpful, and will likely be helpful to future readers, I'd say delete it.

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Deleted by whom? The owner, moderators, or by majority vote?


As a matter of policy, moderators should only be deleting answers that are not answers. Things like "thanks" or whatever. It is not the moderator's job to decide if an answer is good or properly answers the question.

Majority vote:

In general, this is not necessary. Downvoting is the standard mechanism for dealing with low-quality posts. Also, it requires 10K rep, as well as a negative answer score, so someone must already have downvoted it.

I would say to downvote, leave a comment so that they can improve, and move on.

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