Every time I fix typos and grammar in someone else's post I feel like I'm stealing thunder from this person. He asked the question, I just made few corrections and not only did I get the same attribution (that box with name and picture) but I even get listed in front of him! Wouldn't it be better to just save my edits in history but do not put my name there if the edit is relatively small? Just a simple link instead of that box (as it is in case of multiple edits) would make me feel better.


4 Answers 4


I think it is important to be very clear and obvious that another user has edited it - they may have done harm.

In the case of a bad edit:

  • If it is obvious that it is edited by another user, it is likely to result in an edit rollback.
  • If it isn't obvious, it is likely to result in down-vote / closure / flags / deletion etc.

Besides - I want to know you made the good edit, so I can reward it ;-p

  • 2
    You will always be able to find that information in edits log :) Besides, I'm not against marking it as edited but attribute it in the same way is kind of confusing. Couple of times I mistook editor for an author.
    – vava
    Jul 2, 2009 at 7:31
  • 1
    But people don't look at the edit log immediately - they just see a bad post, and hit the close/flag/downvote button. Jul 2, 2009 at 7:36
  • Maybe they should think a little bit more before they do that :) Isn't that the point of your question linked above?
    – vava
    Jul 2, 2009 at 7:42
  • "before they do that" - which? bad edits? You can't stop crazy. bad votes? people are in a hurry, and need the necessary information to make a snap decision without wading through pages of info Jul 2, 2009 at 7:58
  • I'm going to sound like a complete idiot, but I didn't know there was an edit log until now. Can the link be changed a skosh to include the word "edited"? And maybe changed to include the word "(log)"? In any case, imperative that such informatio be public.
    – user95071
    Jul 2, 2009 at 18:29

I would agree with the "problem" stated for two reasons

  1. I am dyslexic so tend to notice the picture rather than the word "edited"
  2. I usually read SO etc on a mobile device so have to scroll and see the name/picture of the editor rather than the poster.

I agree the edits should be attributable. My suggestion would be to diplay the name and not picture for the editor (in the same way as it works for comments).


Are you proposing reversing the order of display? In other words instead of

[editor] [owner]

we would show

[owner] [editor]

I wonder if that might be MORE confusing since it no longer makes "right column under post = owner" true.

Also it does say edited by and answered by right there in the text.. and the owner gets a special color. I dunno, this seems pretty clear to me.

  • 3
    That's because you made it look like this :) Even smaller box for editor would be better.
    – vava
    Jul 2, 2009 at 8:04
  • 3
    Maybe we could eliminate the gravatar, rep, and badges of the editor (except for community wiki)? That would make it clear that it was edited, but the author still gets top billing. Jul 2, 2009 at 16:01
  • I can't really support this change. Editing is a big deal, and deserves prominence. It's not hard to figure out the MANY cues we provide -- color, text, position. Basically, deal. Jul 2, 2009 at 17:52
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    @Jeff: on this question it looks at a casual glance like i both asked and answered it, since my avatar is the one shown for both: stackoverflow.com/questions/164432/… i think that could be improved, by showing the avatar of the original author (or largest-contributing editor) instead of the most recent editor
    – Kip
    Jul 6, 2009 at 5:24

This was suggested once on UserVoice, and declined. IMHO, it would be a great feature to have. This strange mix of wiki and forum, public and private ownership... has tilted too far in the direction of private, and it's hurting both the site and those who would work to improve it. Wikipedia makes you seek out editors and contributors, we could do the same.

The SO model depends on ego, and reducing the visibility of editors would let egos win without crippling editing...

I think making this an opt-in feature would suffice - if you're making a minor edit (fix typos, formatting) check it, if you're adding or changing something more significant then don't. And then add the ability to flag individual edits so as to allow easier identification of abusive editors.

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