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How to deal with obsolete answers?

Given an old question that has old answers that were correct when answered. Now consider that something has changed that makes one or more answers no longer correct.

For example, this answer was correct for the then-current Nokogiri version, but is no longer correct. It's flat out wrong (for the current version of the library).

As another example, the accepted answer to this question was once correct (no such functionality existed) but is now wrong (the functionality now exists).

Is it acceptable to downvote these answers as they are wrong? Upside: this helps highlight more correct answers. Downside: this punishes (lightly) a helpful user who gave a good answer.

What if a downvote is always accompanied by a comment notifying the user that they should delete or edit their answer, and then a followup removal of the downvote iff an edit occurs?

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marked as duplicate by Josh Caswell, Phrogz, jonsca, kiamlaluno, Daniel Fischer Aug 29 '12 at 0:06

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.

    
Minor difference between the duplicate and this: the duplicate asks what to do for your own obsolete answers, while this question is asking what to do for others' obsolete answers. –  Phrogz Aug 28 '12 at 22:09
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There exist more than a few other questions that don't have that difference: How to handle outdated answers? Should outdated answers be voted down, Should previously correct answers be downvoted?, and others, but they are themselves closed as duplicates of the first one I've linked. I simply picked the start of the chain. –  Josh Caswell Aug 28 '12 at 22:28
    
@Josh Great, thanks. (I did perform multiple queries trying to find a dup before asking. :) –  Phrogz Aug 28 '12 at 22:33
    
No shame in not finding previous questions. –  Josh Caswell Aug 29 '12 at 6:46

1 Answer 1

A bit hard to downvote I'd say. Why not add a comment or edit the answer saying that the answer is outdated and what has changed. And/or add your own answer.

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i agree with this. if the answer was correct at the time it was written, then it should not be downvoted. there are too many other things to deal with much less a year old question that somebody downvoted cause the answer is no longer right –  tehdoommarine Aug 29 '12 at 4:30

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