So I edited an answer here, to provide a more purist approach to defining a model.

But this guy rejected my edit because "allowing random members to change answers defeats the purpose on allowing the community to vote on them"

What does this mean? What happened?

  • Exactly, and he is rejecting my improvement because he just feels like it?
    – Dmitry Kharlamov
    Jan 18, 2013 at 0:57
  • I wouldn't waste my time worrying about it if I were you. Jan 18, 2013 at 0:58
  • @Jake223 thanks again!
    – Dmitry
    Jan 18, 2013 at 4:56
  • 2
    blame the approvers of your suggested edit - what they did borders to review-abuse. It's worth noting (click more on suggestion page for "Reviewer Stats") that one of them is inexperienced (<250 reviews), and two others looks like robo-approvers with scores +387/-5 and (drumroll!) +2550/-15
    – gnat
    Jan 18, 2013 at 8:25

2 Answers 2


I can't tell whether your suggested edit is correct. I don't know the subject, so I have no idea why OneToOneField might be more appropriate than ForeignKey. Tip: in your edit summary, don't just say “seems more appropriate”: explain why. Keep in mind that the people who review suggested edits may not be familiar with the topic. In principle, when reviewers are unable to tell whether a suggested edit is correct, they should skip it, but it saves effort if you don't force 90% of the reviewers into either making an uninformed determination or skipping the review.

Jon7's remark that “allowing random members to change answers defeats the purpose on allowing the community to vote on them” is incorrect and goes fundamentally against the core tenets of Stack Exchange. It is a core value of Stack Overflow and Stack Exchange that posts can be edited, and suggested edits were introduced to make this facility available to everyone while retaining some oversight to avoid abuse. Allowing random members to change answers is absolutely fundamental.

The rules for editing clearly state that

Common reasons for edits include: (…)

  • To clarify the meaning of the post (without changing that meaning)
  • To correct minor mistakes or add updates as the post ages

So if the use of ForeignKey was a mistake, then you were definitely correct to fix it. This doesn't “change the meaning” of the post except in the literal sense that any edit, be it fixing a spelling mistake, “changes the meaning”. The rules that appear when you suggest in edit put it this way: “always respect the original author”. Is this something that the author would have written if he'd had the time to spend on it or if he'd known something that you do but he didn't? If so, go ahead and edit. If not, write another answer.

  • Thank you very much for providing a detailed answer and taking the time to understand the situation. OneToOneField in that case is the recommended approach that improves both performance and code quality. IMO, answers should provide the highest quality code as that's often copied into projects with little editing.
    – Dmitry
    Sep 2, 2013 at 21:04
  • I've just submitted another edit with a more detailed description of why it is necessary.
    – Dmitry
    Sep 2, 2013 at 21:11

If you have a different answer or think an answer has a problem, make a new one, or comment. Don't just edit it to change the nature of the answer. As the suggested edit guidance says,

How to Edit

  • Correct minor typos or mistakes
  • Clarify meaning without changing it
  • Add related resources or links
  • Always respect the author’s intent
  • Don’t use edits to reply to the author

Bolding is mine.

  • 1
    Thanks for your answer. If you look at my edit, it does not change the nature of an answer, just changes the field type to the one recommended in the docs, so that anyone who ends up using that code will be reminded yet again to write better code, that's all.
    – Dmitry Kharlamov
    Jan 18, 2013 at 1:02
  • 17
    So write a comment. Changing the method used is a change of the content of the answer. Maybe the answerer thinks this method is the best in this case - Who knows? If you cite the documentation, It will likely be changed. But it is my opinion, and the opinion of the site AFAIK that changing code is changing the nature of the answer. Jan 18, 2013 at 1:05
  • 1
    Thanks for the tip @Jake223. I wasn't aware of that, and in the past submitted corrections to the code and received gratitude for that. I wish every person who voted down this question would instead just voice their opinion. Sad to know there are so many immature ones among us.
    – Dmitry
    Jan 18, 2013 at 4:50
  • 1
    @DmitryKharlamov, Voting is a responsible and mature method to keep the quality of this site very high. Complaining about it is not constructive... learn from it instead.
    – Sparky
    Jan 19, 2013 at 0:33
  • @Sparky, Jakob: please do not spread the idea that one should not edit posts. Editing is a core value of Stack Exchange. If you have an improvement for an answer, you should edit it. Commenting is only for the cases where you are unsure about the improvement. Aug 31, 2013 at 14:28
  • @Gilles, I'm not sure why you directed that comment at me since I said absolutely nothing about editing; I was responding to the OP's complaint about meta down-voters being immmature. However, regarding editing, I respectfully disagree with you and as long as I'm not violating the rules, I'll spread this idea.
    – Sparky
    Aug 31, 2013 at 15:53

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