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The question Parameterizing an SQL IN clause? is specifically worded to deal with IN() clauses of unknown parameter length. However, it could also apply to other situations. For example, chained LIKE clauses, or the substitution parameters of RAISERROR().

I have editing privileges, but I don't want to change a canonical question unless others feel it warrants being made more generic.

Here is an example of applying the most popular answer to work with RAISERROR.

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@cHao If i understand the OP he isn't actually asking a programming question, but rather if he should edit a question to make it more general. –  Jack Oct 15 '12 at 20:17
    
OK, i just reread the question. Pardon my illiteracy. :) Removed my comment. I've just seen a bunch of SO questions and got trigger-happy, i guess. Although in my defense, it does take a second look to realize this isn't a programming question. –  cHao Oct 15 '12 at 20:18
    
@Pekka what was an innocent mistake? –  Justin Dearing Oct 15 '12 at 20:26
    
@Justin there was a comment about how you should have posted this on Stack Overflow. We both misunderstood the question. –  Pëkka Oct 15 '12 at 20:28
    
I don't know about the topic, but would the changes you suggest to make to the question invalidate or degrade any of the answers already given? –  Bart Oct 15 '12 at 20:36
    
@Bart, Well it invalidates the accepted answer, but not the most popular one. What if Jeff were to change the accepted answer? –  Justin Dearing Oct 15 '12 at 20:40

1 Answer 1

The biggest question I would ask myself if I wanted to do so is:

"Do my changes affect the validity of any of the answers already given?".

If the answer to that is "yes", then I would stay away from the question. Especially in your case where you state "Well it invalidates the accepted answer, but not the most popular one."

But surely the users whose answer is now no longer (entirely) correct can adapt their answer to the new question? Well, they simply shouldn't have to. We already frown upon the OP of a question making their question a moving target. And I don't see why this basic principle should change for other users.

Sure, your intentions are good. But if you can't update the question in a way that leaves the current answers unaffected, I would simply advice you to ask your own question. If the relation to the original question is high or especially relevant, you could link to it in your own question.

Should your changes not be problematic in the sense described above, then you could consider the update. But even in that case I would personally be very cautious and honestly still ask my very own question to prevent any unforeseen consequences.

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