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I find it annoying that some users quickly vote for closing a question just based on similarity in the question title, claiming a duplicate. It seems that they didn't take any time in reading the new question and the other question and its answers. Five users did this within an hour from posting my question.

An example question

The old question answers was to use $([]) in jQuery. I did mention that I can't use $([]). It's the second comment in my post. Yes I actually read some similar questions! This tells me these users didn't bother reading anything. Probably just the titles. They go blindly looking at the titles and decide it's a duplicate.

I intentionally used keywords like "non null" and "ready for appending" in the title to make the question more unique and people don't claim it's a duplicate. That didn't work. I guess I have to be super clear and quote every possible duplicate in SO and explain why my question is not a duplicate and thereby exploding the size of my question. I feel like I have to babysit the question.

Also it's frustrating that some questions get closed so quickly! I want to understand the mechanics. Do users remember the older questions and say "I think I read a similar question before". Do they peek at the Related section? Or do they actually take time from their day and do actual search and intentionally look for duplicates for the sake of having the opportunity to close questions!? Does SO award points for closing questions? I mean what's the big motivation? I wish some users become more objective.

I understand I can re-open the question but I don't like going through the process. Sorry for the rant.

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To be fair, I know jquery and by the question alone wouldn't have known it wasn't a duplicate because of some of your vagaries ("can't use this object in the loop" - why not? explain why). You have information in the comments that belongs in your question to help differentiate it - put it in the question –  Daniel DiPaolo Apr 29 '11 at 18:08
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To second what @Daniel said, I had to read that question three times before I realized what you were trying to do. If you'd bothered to explain why the first three techniques you tried to create an empty jQuery object didn't work for you, someone might have bothered to explain why no empty jQuery object would ever work for what you wanted. Tomalak did his best, but you ignored him. FWIW, this is a classic case of a question that needs extra care in answering because the asker thinks he knows what the solution looks like (but is wrong). –  Shog9 Apr 29 '11 at 18:39

2 Answers 2

Your question is reopened, but just to address some of your points:

I guess I have to be super clear and quote every possible duplicate in SO and explain why my question is not a duplicate and thereby exploding the size of my question.

Yes, you do need to be super clear when posting a question that you know is very close to a previous question. Link to the original and explain how they're different. I know you did this, but you buried your explanation in a code comment, so not a lot of people are going to notice that for what it is.

I feel like I have to babysit the question.

You have to babysit all of your questions if you want good answers.

Do users remember the older questions and say "I think I read a similar question before". Do they peek at the Related section?

This is how I usually spot duplicates on my own (otherwise I find them in the moderator queue, of course).

Or do they actually take time from their day and do actual search and intentionally look for duplicates for the sake of having the opportunity to close questions!?

I'm not aware of anyone who does this for duplicates, but I'd be interested in any kind of search that could help us clean up and merge exact duplicates.

Does SO award points for closing questions? I mean what's the big motivation?

No, there's no reputation given for closing questions, people just know that we'll get the same questions asked over and over again if we don't do anything about duplicates.

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I often find duplicates by searching, but my intent was to answer the question, I just happen to hit an SO link in google and it has the answer. In that case, closing instead of answering will get me less rep, but I do it anyway. I do try to make sure that I believe it the answer I would give. –  Lou Franco Apr 29 '11 at 18:04
    
@Lou: I might have been interpreting that part of his question incorrectly. When I see a question that looks familiar, I often have to do a search to find out if that particular question is a duplicate. My (probably incorrect) interpretation was that someone has written a search query that will find duplicates of each other with no other input. –  Bill the Lizard Apr 29 '11 at 18:06
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I think there are people who take time from their day to actually search for duplicates, just not for having the opportunity to close questions. –  Grace Note Apr 29 '11 at 18:13
    
Thanks for reopening the question. That wasn't my intention of my post, as I already had an answer. I posted that answer. –  Tony_Henrich Apr 29 '11 at 18:22

If you are sure about that is not duplicate, flag it for moderator attention, and explain why yours is not duplicate.

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+1, but I want to add that the explanation needs to be very specific. I see occasional "not a duplicate" flags that I can't do anything with because I just don't know enough about the topic to tell the difference between the two questions. –  Bill the Lizard Apr 29 '11 at 17:45
    
I already mentioned the fact that I can reopen it. The problem is when a question is closed, users will not be motivated to read it and contribute answers and move on to other questions. It also takes time to whip up explanations. Finger happy closing should not happen in the first first. –  Tony_Henrich Apr 29 '11 at 17:51
    
Also I am not sure if I get notifications when a question is closed. I don't remember one for that particular question. –  Tony_Henrich Apr 29 '11 at 17:53
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@Tony_Henrich but when it's reopened, it's not like it still has the stink of "ew this was closed" on it, unless you go look in the question revision history, and reopening it will bump it back to the top of the recent list. –  Daniel DiPaolo Apr 29 '11 at 18:06

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