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I find, when reviewing the late answer tab, that such answers seem to fall into three categories (most frequent to least frequent):

  1. Answers that are intelligible; are "sort of" in the right ball park; are not wrong; but really don't add anything at all to the entire question and answer session.
  2. Are me too answers (or me too with a very small addition of information - example here. I am not trying to single out this particular answer, but it happens to be a recent one for which I have a link.)
  3. Are crassly wrong - but still correctly formulated as an answer.

I do find it difficult to deal with all three categories. What is the recommended course of action in these cases (for a user that does not yet have edit privileges).

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2 Answers 2

up vote 10 down vote accepted
  1. Unless it's not actually an answer, you don't have to do anything other than vote as normal or revise it for any normal formatting means. You can suggest edits at any reputation, and if you're more in the mood for indirect intervention, you can always consider comments if you have at least 50 reputation.
  2. Flag it if it's just a me too statement or a question expansion. If it's a me too that actually provides some answer material, it may be wise to revise it to highlight that, but you probably won't be faulted for flagging those if you're stumped.
  3. Same as 1. People are allowed to be wrong. They'd, of course, be wrong as a result, but it's not against site policy to be wrong. We have no need to police the site and enforce correctness of the content - that's what comments and voting is designed to handle. Editing and all sort of actual moderation are for things like trash or trash talk.

If something on "review" isn't obvious as to what action needs to be taken, take a step back and think about whether there really needs to be any action taken on it. Many times, you just need to treat it like any other answer you run into on the site.

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1  
My approach has been as you suggest. For whatever reason, I have been thinking the time element made a difference (highlighting the lack of value-add to the site I guess). –  Chris Walton Jun 8 '11 at 19:41
    
@Chris The time value mostly factors in for element #2, which happens often. Perhaps not as frequent as #1 (in accordance to your measurements), but it is frequent enough to see old threads get new answers that are just "Me too!" or "Thanks!". Thus is why we have it. –  Grace Note Jun 8 '11 at 19:42

The same as for normal (not late) answer :
1. +1, or nothing
2. +1 or nothing
3. -1, or leave a comment saying what is wrong

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