While reviewing in the Close Votes category, I've noticed that duplicates sometimes seem to have the duplicator and the duplicatee reversed. They suggest to close an old question with a good accepted answer, because there is a newer duplicate with no accepted answer.

I think that it's better and fairer to keep an older answer open, especially if it led to good and accepted answers. Also consider that the older answer probably has more views, and that someone who comes from Google might not think it's useful to click the 'might be a duplicate of ...' link if the answer he's looking for is not on the page where he landed.

So the suggestion is: give the reviewer the option Don't close this question, close the other one!

Here's an example

Original question, 2 years old, accepted answer, do I think this should be closed..

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...because this 1 year old question without an accepted answer might be a dup?

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1 Answer 1


That question is in the review queue because it got flagged by a user who doesn't yet have enough reputation to cast a close vote.

In general, I don't think it's always possible to automatically determine which version is more useful. Just because one question has an accepted answer doesn't mean that the other doesn't have an even better answer.

In this case, it looks like the newer question actually has answers that are a bit more helpful. Sure, the older question's accepted answer is correct and concise, but the newer question goes a step further with, for example, this answer.

If I were in your shoes, I'd probably pause to examine the answers when I noticed that the proposed direction of the closure is a bit odd. I'm leaning towards the newer question being better, so I'd probably cast a close vote as well, but if you disagree you can choose "Do Not Close" instead, which is still a totally valid decision.

All in all, human eyes are invaluable in cases like this and I don't think we should move towards trying to automatically pick a better duplicate.

  • Ah, so nothing is automatically nominated at all. Thanks for clearing that up :) I still think a 'no, close the other question instead' option would be useful though.
    – Junuxx
    Oct 12, 2012 at 9:57

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