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Can stackoverflow detect collusion?

For example I have seen 2 programmers collude when one of them already has a predefined question with the predefined answer. The other programmer already knows the answer so as soon as the question is posted the other programmer immediately provides the correct answer and is the hero of the day.

Should stackoverflow detect and take the appropriated actions? Or does the principle of crowd-sourcing make collusion negligible.

How does stackoverflow detect this? I suppose it can check the amount of questions and answers between 2 users, and if it is above a certain threshold, they are flagged?

What actions would stackoverflow take when collusion is detected?

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I believe this is allowed as long as it isn't abusive. And of course the usual quality rules apply. – Mysticial Nov 30 '12 at 7:06
up vote 7 down vote accepted

It can detect it, but it only really becomes relevant for vote fraud. I see no issue with 2 people collaborating or being able to answer some questions quickly, however if voting had to occur the same way it would raise red flags. It would not be the only thing looked at and there is other factors that are taken into account to first determine if it is not a sock puppet account.

I have had times where I answered the same persons questions 3 or 4 times in the same session. Since questions and answers are rated on quality, this should almost be a norm if the person is a high quality contributor.

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+1 I think that's totally normal to check out a user's other questions after answering the first, especially if they offer bounties or maybe just had an interesting question that made you curious to see what else they're asking. – WebChemist Nov 30 '12 at 7:34
If 2 people collaborate offline then replay it on the stackoverflow platform, you essentially beat the competition as you have answered the question first with the correct answer before anyone else. Is this fair? At what point does collaboration turn into collusion? – Daniel Cabral Nov 30 '12 at 8:11
@DanielCabral It doesn't matter. The goal of the site is to get answers, and to keep those answer up to date. With the amount of questions on SO, there is a good change that the amount of times this happen is extremely small. Also, people can always provide a better answer. I think your over thinking this. The real question is, does the information make the internet a better place? If your doing it to gain reputation, well that's a complete different ball game altogether. – BinaryMisfit Nov 30 '12 at 8:15
@Diago thx for clarifying the purpose of this site. Will mark the answer as correct for your altruistic tendencies. :) – Daniel Cabral Nov 30 '12 at 8:26

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