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Exit strategies for “chameleon questions”

I had a guy whom I answered, but after that he simply edited his question to a completely different question. (he had one compiler error, I basically fixed it, and then he had another one, and he deleted the first question part completely out of it)

I risk losing rep because people see my "old" answer and think I'm retarded because the answer is seemingly totally unrelated. There has to be some way to stop that kind of behaviour? But if I report such a question, would it get deleted or just reset to its original state?(preferred!)

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marked as duplicate by Ladybug Killer, random Jul 26 '10 at 17:47

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.

    
Please consider pressing the little button on the left, (that points up) a couple of times. Preferably an uneven amount of clicks ;) –  Blub Jul 26 '10 at 17:31
1  
I hope you do not start a dupe session here. –  Ladybug Killer Jul 26 '10 at 17:31
    
This is a real question, while my comment is trying to be funny. It's not an exact science. –  Blub Jul 26 '10 at 17:32

2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

If the OP doesn't seem to understand that he/she can post a new question, you might post a comment explaining this, and roll back their change (if you can). You can flag for moderator help if this isn't doing the trick.

Note that it is perfectly OK for the OP to edit to clarify. If you understood the question to be something different because the OP didn't explain it right, then you might want to simply delete your answer.

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It wasn't a clarification, simply the next problem he had in the same source file. –  Blub Jul 26 '10 at 17:37
    
@Blub - that's what I was addressing in the first paragraph. –  user27414 Jul 26 '10 at 17:41

I generally post a link to the revision that I answered, then try to update my answer to match the current question. I've encountered this a few times and found it kind of frustrating.

Lets say this is your original answer:

You decrement foo by 10.

And then the question completely changes scope and meaning. Your revised answer might look like this:

You decrement foo by 10.

Edit

This answer addressed [this version] of the question which has since been edited. New answer below:

You increment foo by 15.

Where (of course) [this version] is a link to the version of the question that you answered.

For instance, this link leads to the original version of this, your current question. I obtained it by clicking the link right next to edited in your question, and copied the appropriate view source URL.

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I agree, very frustrating. So the question is what can be done from a preventive view. –  Blub Jul 26 '10 at 17:36
1  
@Blub - You really can't prevent human beings from being human beings, at least not in my experience. We try to be patient and helpful, especially with / to new users of the system. By far, you'll see this when someone new is trying to figure out how things work. –  Tim Post Jul 26 '10 at 17:40
    
Hm I want to upvote, but it seems I need 15 rep for that :( –  Blub Jul 26 '10 at 17:47

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