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While I was arguing with a user for what was in my opinion a code-only answer, he told me that it is the only answer you could give since the OP didn't provide enough information.

This is the answer.

Are code only answers valid in these situations?

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The answer is careless, but a downvote feels way exaggerated in this case –  Pëkka May 29 '13 at 20:15
@Pekka웃 Then where is the line between a valid and a non-valid code-only answer ? Also the downvote is because I judge he could easily explain what he changed and why he changed it. –  ʞunɥdɐpɐɥd May 29 '13 at 20:16
In most cases that I see, code-only answers make too many assumptions about the user's ability to understand them. However, since the question in the case was "But how do the where clause?" this answer seems appropriate. –  George Cummins May 29 '13 at 20:17
I agree the answer could easily be improved a lot, e.g. by pointing to the manual –  Pëkka May 29 '13 at 20:18
Well the OP can accept whichever answer they want, if you don't like the answer downvote/comment and move one –  bluefeet May 29 '13 at 20:19
Two wrongs don't make a right and you are acting childish in the comment section –  staticx May 29 '13 at 20:38

1 Answer 1

up vote 10 down vote accepted

I think some code-only answers are not that bad. It depends on what the question is. If, for example, someone is asking:

how can I code such a task?

How is a code-only answer incomplete? It is as complete as an answer that only adds: "Here's the answer", "I think you need this:" or any other variant of this phrase to the code.

It is true that we might want some explanation behing the code, but, IMHO, if not specified otherwise in the question, code-only answers are acceptable as well.

You can always post a comment to require more out of an answer, but I think downvoting or, even worse, flagging is an exaggeration.

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Flagging is not necessary, since there isn't anything a moderator can do. Moderators would not probably delete an answer just because it contains only code. –  kiamlaluno May 29 '13 at 23:36
@kiamlaluno, I have seen a few very low-quality flags on this type of answers. –  Jefffrey May 29 '13 at 23:44

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