I'm talking about my answer here to this question. It was deleted by Robert Harvey without any sort of explanation.

I can not see any reason at all for the answer to be deleted, so what gives? If the quality was poor or it was wrong, a down vote could have been given. I can't see how it goes against the FAQ. A misclick perhaps?

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    To be fair it reads like a comment. As do the other new answers on the question (and I've commented myself to that effect). – ben is uǝq backwards Dec 4 '12 at 22:16
  • It should arguably have been made a comment then, it's clearly valid info. Not sure why Robert didn't – Pekka Dec 4 '12 at 22:29
  • possible duplicate of How can I know why my post was deleted? or perhaps the faq What is an acceptable answer? – Some Helpful Commenter Dec 4 '12 at 23:00
  • question has a mod notice, was it there when you were posting your answer? "We're looking for long answers that provide some explanation and context. Don't just give a one-line answer: please explain why you're recommending it as a solution. Answers that don't explain anything will be deleted..." – gnat Dec 5 '12 at 8:02
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    @gnat, no it didn't, it was added after the 3 answers saying "because of your OR clause" – Josh Smeaton Dec 5 '12 at 10:16
  1. You were asking clarifying questions. Clarifying questions go in comments, rather than in answers.
  2. The part of your answer that was an answer relies heavily on content in a link, which, again, should be a comment or it should be summarized, quoted, etc. such that the answer is self-sufficient.
  • Ok, fair enough, but deleted outright? I don't agree with that. The answer obviously wasn't spam. And the questions asked within the answer all led to the actual content of the answer which was "OR doesn't allow the optimiser to use indexes". The link was a 'how-to' get to the query plan. – Josh Smeaton Dec 4 '12 at 22:21
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    @JoshSmeaton your answer was probably flagged by multiple users (who considered it "not an answer" for the reasons Servy explained above), making it climb up the moderators flag queue. – bfavaretto Dec 4 '12 at 22:24
  • @JoshSmeaton The category would be "not an answer". It doesn't meet the minimum standards of an answer on SO. I would say it's a borderline decision. The answer is pretty poor and is flirting with the definition of NAA. It's possible that given your rep you weren't given the benefit of the doubt, but that's wild speculation. – Servy Dec 4 '12 at 22:24
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    But no chance given to go back and amend the answer? Maybe it wasn't written as eloquently as it could have been, but "OR" is the reason, and "Use the query plan" IS the answer. What I'm disagreeing with here is the outright deletion so quickly. Down votes should be given if the quality is not great. Deletions should be reserved for noise - which my answer was not IMO. – Josh Smeaton Dec 4 '12 at 22:27
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    If you can make it a good answer, go ahead. And once done, flag it for moderator attention. – Bart Dec 4 '12 at 22:28
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    @JoshSmeaton: I've made some edits to your answer and undeleted it. Note my [citation needed] notation. Unfortunately all of the other answers are speculative as well; I've added a post notice to the question. Your answer was the only one that was flagged (by a non-participant in the question). – user102937 Dec 4 '12 at 22:31
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    @Bart, motivation to make it into a good answer has gone right out the window - and that's my point. Bring attention to the (lack of) quality, and you'll find at least some users go back to it (especially users with half decent reputation). If it's deleted though, going back and fixing it, then flagging for attention seems like a sunk cost. – Josh Smeaton Dec 4 '12 at 22:32
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    @JoshSmeaton: There's always the possibility of posting a new answer, rather than trying to salvage the old, deleted one. – user102937 Dec 4 '12 at 22:35
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    @RobertHarvey thanks for the undeletion, I improved the answer with actual information and research – Josh Smeaton Dec 5 '12 at 0:40

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