I found some info about abandoned questions. But I saw an answer that did not fit to the question. It has been voted up and down several times. Someone asked the user to delete the answer as it is not correct. But he did not, because he clearly left the site some days after he wrote his answer.

Maybe I could just flag this answer but it is not so easy because the answer can be helpful as others stated.

Maybe an edit would be the proper way. But I feel that edits shouldn't contain something that wasn't in the original version. (At least I cannot say "ok this is not the real answer" in an edit.)

  • 3
    There is no reason to flag this answer - no need to bother the mods with it. They don't need to deal with the validity of an answer. It might very well be wrong, but in that case it's the community's duty to deal with it via down votes and comments (which it has received). – Lix Mar 14 '13 at 11:09
  • You are right but there are some more thoughts behind my question I think. – qben Mar 14 '13 at 11:20

If you know enough about the topic, upvote or downvote it accordingly. Don't try to flag it because your flag would most probably be declines for the following reason:

flags should not be used to indicate technical inaccuracies, or an altogether wrong answer

You should also avoid editing it. If you are <2k, your suggested edit will be declined for making so much changes in the original post. Best thing to do is leave a comment indicating what's wrong in the answer and what should be fixed.

  • 3
    +1 - this declined flag reason pretty much says it all. Mods don't deal with technical inaccuracies just as they don't deal with 3rd party policy matters (eg. Facebook policy violations). – Lix Mar 14 '13 at 11:13
  • Ok, thanks. I thought I shouldn't flag it. – qben Mar 14 '13 at 11:14

As an additional suggestion, as well as downvoting the question I would also suggest upvoting the comment that states that it's a wrong answer too, to ensure that comment gets some higher visibility

The more comment votes there are the more distinct the vote number colour is so that should also help highlight to future visitors that it's an incorrect answer.

Screenshot below taken from some of the answers on that question shows that higher voted comments stand out more so are more noticeable, and draws peoples attention to the fact that numerous other people agree that this is incorrect.

enter image description here

  • I agree and I did so. It is a good thing that best comments stand out. I feel though that comments don't succeed because the answer is somewhat "stronger". I mean a comment can be highlighted but it remains small while the answer stands big above it. – qben Mar 14 '13 at 12:47

I'd say you should do just leave it at it. Just downvote it for being stupid. The other usual course of action is to post about it here on meta to draw attention to it (which will result in a heavy downvote barrage on the answer, making it float even lower in the list).

It's a fairly bad answer disregarding an important edge case, but it doesn't, say, introduce subtle security holes, so it's not explicitly harmful, and nobody really has a chance to be harmed by it. The comments indicating that it's a bad answer are highly visible and there are tons of good answers well above it.

  • Thank you for your answer. With downvotes I think some change is achievable, but this time the user will not change the answer or delete it. So I feel my downvote a bit useless. Anyway, I agree with you. – qben Mar 14 '13 at 11:18

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