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I've been reviewing quite a lot recently and, from reading around and questions asked here, was under the impression that reviewing a late answer shouldn't really be about determining it's correctness, just whether it is an attempt to answer the question in hand.

Consider this review audit I just had: http://stackoverflow.com/review/late-answers/2243069

As far as I can tell the answer is obviously wrong but, apart from that, I can't see that much wrong with it. If I'd have reviewed as "No Action Required", I'd have failed the audit; as it happens I know enough .net to have thought to try and add a comment.

What am I missing here? Was this answer chosen as an audit question because it is wrong, or is there some other reason?

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"No Action Required" on an answer you know is wrong? Why not downvote it? –  Yannis Jun 3 '13 at 13:48
    
Also, why not edit it to correct some obvious spelling mistakes? Btw would be a huge tip off for me. –  Richard J. Ross III Jun 3 '13 at 13:49
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@Yannis My point is that I happened to know this because I know some .net - however I was under the impression that reviewing SHOULDN'T be about the correctness of the answer (certainly, you do what you can when you can) but about whether they had had a crack at answering the question. This answer was chosen as an audit question and, aside from being incorrect, it certainly isn't uber-terrible in any other respect in my opinion. Could I have your view on why this might have been chosen as an audit question? –  GHC Jun 3 '13 at 13:55
    
@RichardJ.RossIII I though we should avoid "few character edits"? In the answer the only typos are, as far as I can tell, "perfomance" and there are a couple of grammatical issues. Neither of these, in my opinion, detract from what the person is trying to say. Could I have your view on why this might have been chosen as an audit question? –  GHC Jun 3 '13 at 13:58
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Reviewing is about the correctness of the answer (amongst other things). If you are uncertain an answer is correct, skip it. –  Yannis Jun 3 '13 at 13:59
    
@Yannis OK, thank you. As an aside, why doesn't SO assign review tasks to people who have score in the tags to which the review item relates? Or does it already do this? –  GHC Jun 3 '13 at 14:03
    
I'm not sure if the queues take your tags into consideration automatically, but I wouldn't be surprised if they did. Nevertheless you can filter them manually. Look for the filter link next to the queue's name. –  Yannis Jun 3 '13 at 14:05
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@GHC All reviews don't require knowledge of the subject material in the posts. In fact, most don't. There's very often something that you can do to help improve the post or help the user without needing to understand whether or not the answer is correct. That's not true of all posts though. Because of this there's no need to try to restrict reviews to tags you're active in. –  Servy Jun 3 '13 at 14:05
    
@GHC, about late-answers being reviewed by users with tags, there is this proposal for discussion, if you are interested. Thank's. meta.stackexchange.com/questions/182643/… –  Andre Silva Jul 4 '13 at 18:03
    
@AndreSilva Cheers for the heads-up! –  GHC Jul 5 '13 at 8:59

2 Answers 2

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Posts for review-audits are taken randomly, the community won't explain the reasons for selecting a post for an audit. But, you can see the downvotes for the answer you have reviewed, it's enough to get placed as an audible post for audit.

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The main aim for review-audit is to find the robo-reviewers, as you are aware of dotnet you intends to edit that post and got passed, if anyone didn't know dot net should skip it. if not means the user might be a bot, so, this post is far enough to caught that user and give the penalty.

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All reviews don't require knowledge of the subject material in the posts. In fact, most don't. There's very often something that you can do to help improve the post or help the user without needing to understand whether or not the answer is correct. That's not true of all posts though. Because of this there's no need to try to restrict reviews to tags you're active in.

If an answer is:

  • not an answer
  • a link only answer
  • has lots of obvious spelling/grammatical/formatting mistakes
  • contains signatures, or other noise unrelated to the content of the answer
  • is spam
  • etc.

then you can address those issues without needing to know anything about the subject material.

The one thing that you can't do without understanding the subject material is voting. You should understand the technical merit to vote on the answer (in either direction).

In the case of this particular post the problem with it is almost entirely related to its technical merits, so there really isn't anything to review for someone who doesn't understand that, and as such skip is the appropriate response. Since that's not true of so many review posts there's no need to add the restrictions you're describing.

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Thanks. So, if I understand you correctly, the workflow for reviewing would be to check the things in your bullet points above and then, if there are no issues, either review as "No Action Required" if you understand the subject matter or "Skip" if you don't? This doesn't feel quite right... wouldn't that mean that if you came across an answer which had spelling errors etc and you edited it without understanding the technical content, the end result to the community would be pretty much the same as clicking "No Action Required" on a post that you didn't understand with no spelling errors? –  GHC Jun 3 '13 at 16:04
    
That being said, I take your point about this type of answer being relatively uncommon! –  GHC Jun 3 '13 at 16:04
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@GHC Keep in mind that the primary purpose of the review system, particularly first posts and late answers, is not to evaluate the technical merit. The primary purpose is to generate some feedback to new users, and to address the issues discussed in my bullets as these posts have a dis-proportionally high rate of such issues, so evaluating those is the most important. If there is no way you see to give feedback related to one of the points mentioned above, voting is yet another way. –  Servy Jun 3 '13 at 16:10
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The reason this post is an audit is that it was deleted, and it was deleted because not only was it technically wrong, but it was so grossly incorrect that it was considered to be dangerous for an unknowledgable reader to read it and think that it might have merit. Such deletions are very rare, usually just downvoting is enough. So by and large I'd say voting is less important than most other things you can do when reviewing; although there are certain situations where it's particularly important. This is one of those rare exceptions. –  Servy Jun 3 '13 at 16:12
    
Thank you. That's cleared things up. –  GHC Jun 3 '13 at 16:28

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