'Operation is not valid due to the current state of the object' error during postback

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Should action be taken in cases like this when the second answer is a nearly-exact dupe of the first answer?

If a flag is needed, what reason should moderators be provided with? "Near dupe" probably doesn't say enough for a moderator to make a decision.

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    This might be a bad case since it calls out that 2001 for the value didn't work and that somehow 10000 is better. – Some Helpful Commenter Mar 7 '12 at 21:57
  • The number in question, in this case, is very similar to "Max Request Size" from PHP.INI. It depends on the solution being implemented. Just FYI, not saying you are wrong – user133440 Mar 7 '12 at 21:59

In case an answer was added at a later time which doesn't add anything to a previous answer which was posted a considerable amount of time earlier, I usually just down vote and leave a comment stating why.

This is constructive in three ways:

  • It might discourage the user from adding duplicate answers in the future.
  • It might encourage the user to update his answer and include extra information which wasn't available in the earlier answer.
  • It might prompt the user to delete his answer, so the mods don't even need to intervene.

In the majority of cases, I'd recommend that you do nothing. Unless the answer is literally copy-pasted from another answer on the page, you're just going to incite debate and all for what purpose?

If you don't think the answer is helpful, don't upvote it. If you think the other answer is helpful, then upvote it. It's as simple and easy as that.

If you want to leave a comment suggesting that, instead of posting a duplicate answer, you should simply upvote/comment/edit the other answer, then you should feel free to do that. You can even downvote the answer if you wish. But do be careful when making this call of copying; it's quite a hefty accusation.

In the case you highlight, I really don't think that the answers are duplicates of one another. Yes, they show basically the same sample code. But if that is the way of accomplishing the desired task, then it makes good sense that they'd show the same solution. Their explanation is slightly different, and that's the part that really counts.

If anything, it looks like Jay's answer should be a comment on Devjosh's answer, but since they didn't have the reputation to post a comment, they left an answer instead. Not really a big problem here, since their answer actually does answer the question, which is precisely what our instructions to them request. There's nothing wrong with posting a similar answer to a question, so long as you provide new or additional information not provided by the existing answers.

But whatever you do, don't flag it for moderator attention. Moderators can't do anything about this you couldn't do yourself (i.e., leaving a comment) except outright delete the answer. I don't really think that's an appropriate solution, but beyond that, there's a more general problem: You should not put mods in the position of having to make these types of judgment calls. That's not what they're for.

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    Mods could turn it into a comment(not sure if they can only turn it into a comment on the question, or also on another answer). – CodesInChaos Mar 7 '12 at 22:17
  • ... wait, what? down votes incite debate? :) – Steven Jeuris Mar 8 '12 at 0:16
  • But to add a remark which is on topic, "But do be careful when making this call of copying". Don't make that accusation ever. There is a difference in not bothering to read/skimming other answers, and copying answers. Let's always assume it's the former. – Steven Jeuris Mar 8 '12 at 0:20
  • @Steven: Well, remember downvotes are a little different on Meta versus main. And I don't think downvoting is bad for whatever reason on either site. The point was more making an accusation, or deciding in your own mind to downvote based on your assumption. So basically, I agree with your second comment. Mostly. I have seen one case where someone literally copy-pasted my answer, down to the formatting. – Cody Gray Mar 8 '12 at 1:07
  • That could just be proof of the infinite monkey theorem.:) – Steven Jeuris Mar 8 '12 at 1:20

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