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I asked this question and was surprised to find it closed as a duplicate despite it being different from the proposed duplicate questions.

The first supposed duplicate is "Deep copy vs Shallow Copy"
I want to know which one should do which, not what the copy constructor does. Therefore the question is similar, but not a duplicate

I also noticed that the proposed duplicate question was also marked duplicate (do this too many times and we might get a stack overflow) for the same reason mine was. It is similar to, but not a duplicate of What is the difference between a deep copy and a shallow copy?.

If the people who marked it as duplicate had read the question they would note that the question added something: "What type of a copy does a copy constructor do?".

The second supposed duplicate is "What is the difference between overloading operator= and overloading the copy constructor?"
This question is asking if the copy constructor is being called if = is used in variable initialization. I want to know which operator should be used for a shallow copy and which should be used for a deep copy. (as R. Martinho Fernandes said, it should be neither and that instead the move constructor should be called.)

In summary, I believe that a fine line needs to be drawn between 'Duplicate' and 'Similar'. As many questions that add information are being closed because they share some similar properties of other questions. I also suspect that to some extent the reason for marking things as duplicate is a result of the reward for doing so. Something which I find quite sad considering that reputation is designed to show how helpful one is, when in this instance it is rewarded for being deconstructive.

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Nobody gets reputation for marking duplicates. –  Pëkka Oct 27 '12 at 18:46
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Not yet anyway @Pekka... :-) –  ben is uǝq backwards Oct 27 '12 at 18:48
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@Ben - heh. Who would come up with something like that? User1204406 - as others have said here, maybe this closing got botched and if that's the case, the users weren't paying attention and it needs to be reverted. However, there's no need to create such huge drama over it. There's much too little duplicate-closing on the site overall, and there are no rewards for it. (Which needs to change IMO. But that's a different discussion.) –  Pëkka Oct 27 '12 at 19:13

1 Answer 1

One of the key steps to successfully asking a question on SO is show your homework. That is, you should include in your question any information you've already gathered which might point to an answer. If you don't have any such information, you probably aren't quite ready to post a question. Even simple speculation about your problem is better than nothing.

Including such research does a few things. Least importantly (in the long term), it lets readers know that you've tried to solve your problem yourself, that you're not just asking others to do your work for you. Much more importantly, it focuses your question and helps answerers address your problem constructively and specifically. It helps future readers by being a better starting point for their research into their own problems.

Where am I going with this? Part of doing your homework is poking around on SO for similar posts that might have partial solutions or useful material. Your question has been identified as a duplicate of some existing SO questions. You have reviewed those other questions and have not, in fact, found the solution you need there. You should edit your question to include that information -- why those supposed duplicates don't help.

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It's worth noting that after editing your question, you can post a question here on meta, requesting the community to review it again and possible reopen it. –  Second Rikudo Oct 28 '12 at 8:47
    
@MadaraUchiha: Or simply flag and ask a mod to review the question –  Won't Oct 28 '12 at 19:43
    
@Won't: True, but at least I would feel better if he let 5 different people decide on reopening his question, rather than the opinion of one. This way, it decreases the chances of the question being closed again. –  Second Rikudo Oct 29 '12 at 9:50

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