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Possible Duplicates:
Are answers that just contain links elsewhere really “good answers”?
Why is linking bad?

Is it okay to answer questions like this (name blanked out):

alt text

The answer happened to be relevant and useful, but what if the link no longer works? Shouldn't you at least copy/paste te relevant part?

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marked as duplicate by Ladybug Killer, random, Thomas Owens, fretje, Joel Coehoorn Nov 16 '09 at 14:02

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

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Aw, I wished so much to answer this with just a "No" linking each letter to those duplicates. :) –  Cawas Apr 13 '10 at 23:23

3 Answers 3

up vote 8 down vote accepted

No. You should always provide relevant text along with appropriate information about the source material (such as the name and date posted, if available).

I personally haven't always done this myself, but it's a good practice to capture relevant information without needing to click on links (other than to validate the material and get more information).

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3  
The biggest reason to do this is to make sure that the answer remains helpful even after the link dies, IMO. –  tvanfosson Nov 16 '09 at 16:34
    
@tvanosson: Of course, we aren't allowed to change our vote after the link dies to indicate that it's become a bad answer. –  endolith May 18 '12 at 0:45

I would usually explain some detail as to what is at the link. It gives the reader some idea of whether it will be relevant or interesting.

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Technically, yes as it does allow you to save the answer, and it may provide relevant information concerning the question. Most people like seeing more information than just a link. The best answers are the ones which provide the link and then give and explanation as to what it says/why it's relevant.

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