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Provide indicator that another user is editing a post

A scenario that has occurred a few times is that someone edits an answer while the same answer is already being edited (e.g. by the original author). In this case, it appears that whichever edit is submitted later takes precedence (while the other edit does get recorded). Unfortunately, this behavior isn’t always immediately evident (I realize that a notification is sent out when a question is edited).

In the above scenario, two simultaneous edits is simply not constructive – it is quite possible that both people make similar changes, and in the case of different edits, an additional edit is still required to merge the information.

It would be beneficial if individuals were informed that someone else was currently making an edit (and optionally, if posts were locked for a short period while an edit is in progress - especially if the editor is the original poster).

Also, I would suggest a time restriction on edits – perhaps no edits within the first 10 minutes of a post being made. Unfortunately (and I don’t think it is just me) it is not uncommon to submit a post and then notice a few errors or missing ideas, prompting an immediate edit.

(A related point of mention, a few times, presumably as a result of caching, on loading a question it appears unanswered, but after answering the question, a previous answer is visible with a time stamp from before the page was initially loaded - a remedy for this would be appreciated).

More in the vein of answering, but still related to notifications. There have been several times when a question has been closed while I have been well into the process of composing an answer. It is a waste of time to lose part of a response (if someone has asked the question, and I have decided to invest the time to answer, perhaps there is some merit to it?), and it would be very much appreciated if closing a post could give someone composing a response a couple minutes to finish their current thought and post the answer.

  • Feels like that is 3 issues in one post. Do you also want to limit editing in the grace period of/by the last editor? As for notifications, see the implementation notes in Inline editing silently overwrites other people's changes. – Arjan Jan 8 '12 at 19:53
  • Thanks for your response. (Firstly I am a ServerFault user - so perhaps there are some differences). 1) The second post you link (Inline editing...) is very much what I am looking for - but I have never come across that notification (neither for inline nor standalone - didn't actually realize that I had been using the inline editor all this time). 2) The grace period is (very nice, but) unrelated. I was referring to a similar time limit when only the original poster (and no other users) can edit the question - would you know if this is true of the 'grace period'? – cyberx86 Jan 9 '12 at 4:07
  • @Arjan: Finally the last point is perhaps unrelated - I see that there is a post on it already More warning on doomed questions - I believe it adequately addresses my question. As an aside - I didn't even think to search on mSO for similar questions, and didn't come across any on mSF. Would be nice if similar questions from multiple meta.* sites were included in the results. Thanks again for pointing me in the right direction. – cyberx86 Jan 9 '12 at 4:15

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