One of my answers has been edited by a low-rep user.

Now what he did is totally inexplicable to me, as a matter of fact he destroyed the answer. The new version is neither syntactically valid nor does it make any sense.

Still, the edit got "peer-reviewed" and nodded off.

Is there any way to deal with these kinds of things, other than sighing heavily and rolling back the edit?

Rhetorical side question: Could this be a side-effect of people grinding for reviewer badges?

  • 7
    Sigh very heavily and roll it back. That's all there is really. And yes, I do believe some of the incentives to review are the partial cause of poor reviews. Especially regarding the fact that the approvers have a 675/165, 186/7 and 50/0 acceptance/rejection ratio
    – Bart
    Apr 4 '13 at 7:58
  • 1
    Is it really that wrong? The user changed <xsl:otherwise> and <xsl:choose> to </xsl:otherwise> and </xsl:choose> - which looks right. And its seems like the user made an attempt to simplify the logic. It need some work, but it is not all bad.
    – Kobi
    Apr 4 '13 at 8:37
  • 6
    @Kobi I'm sorry, the edit is completely borked. The <xsl:when> was killed, <xsl:value-of> is not a valid child of <xsl:choose> and the elements are mis-nested now. Also there is really no way to improve or simplify the original. It's a straight-forward if-then-else construct that does exactly what the question asked for, I can't see any goodwill behind the edit.
    – Tomalak
    Apr 4 '13 at 8:45
  • 4
    @Tomalak: I wish folks got -2 rep for a bad suggested edit.
    – user7116
    Apr 4 '13 at 16:36
  • @sixlettervariables Not a bad idea, instead of dealing with wrong or poor edit reviews it would be nice, as a start, to encourage responsible reviews instead of a mass-review for a badge. The other alternative would be removing the badge directly and let the "heart reviewers" do it the right way. A third option could be removing the 2 rep reward for an approved edit and rising the min rep to be able to make edits... IMHO it can be attacked at many levels... but it's just an idea.
    – Fritz
    Apr 4 '13 at 16:40
  • @Gamb Well, raising the min rep for suggested edits would not work. It's the whole point of the system to allow virtually anybody to improve the site. A penalty for rejected edits would probably work best. It keeps the general incentive to try and improve things, but it probably would make people think twice that would otherwise simply grind edits.
    – Tomalak
    Apr 4 '13 at 16:51
  • @Tomalak Well, yes... a rep restriction would break the system. Still, the problem has two sides one being rep grinding with rubbish edits and the other a badge farming with senseless reviews. It would be ALSO nice to penalize the robot/spam/lame reviewers but that involves some extra effort (like having single review-related badges awarded on any category only once or removing them altogether, rising the minimum rep that allows reviewing)... I second the idea of a -2 rep penalty. I want to trust in the SO community to review content without caring about an "I reviewed a lot or stuff" badge
    – Fritz
    Apr 4 '13 at 17:26
  • 1
    @sixlettervariables Maybe it would even be useful if reviewers got a penalty for a review they approved when it ends up being rejected.
    – Tomalak
    Apr 4 '13 at 19:35

Just roll it back. You may want to investigate past approvals of the other reviewers. If you see clear evidence that they are just blindly plowing through the queues, flag one of their posts and explain the situation.

Yep, this is a side effect of the incentivizing of /review

  • Seems like a crude way to get mod attention. Some mechanism like "approves must outweigh rejects by +3" would easily take care of debatable edits automatically.
    – Tomalak
    Apr 4 '13 at 8:27
  • @Tomalak: We already have audits. But I agree that users with bad reviews should get more scrutiny, which is why I wrote this: meta.stackexchange.com/a/157383/178438 Apr 4 '13 at 8:30
  • 2
    @Tomalak: We don't mind, I promise. Apr 4 '13 at 13:07
  • @BoltClock Thanks, I'll keep it in mind.
    – Tomalak
    Apr 4 '13 at 13:40
  • @Tomalak No, that solution wouldn't solve the problem. There are simply too many bad reviewers. I've seen other clear indications of vandalism approved with 0 rejects. It might stop some, but not all. Also note that if you applied the same logic to rejection, that you need 3 more rejections than approvals you'll make it almost impossible to reject stuff like this, as it's hard enough as it is to find enough people who look closely enough to reject it.
    – Servy
    Apr 4 '13 at 16:35
  • @Servy My line of thinking was: any change must be more approved than rejected. It stabilizes the system when a reject happens faster than an approve. To "keep things as they are unless they really are wrong" is the natural approach, IMO, so the asymmetry would be useful. But of course it wouln't do anything against changes that are wrong yet approved with 0 rejects.
    – Tomalak
    Apr 4 '13 at 16:58

I totally agree with you. This edit should rejected, definitely.

Is there any way to deal with these kinds of things, other than sighing heavily and rolling back the edit?

I don't think so, unfortunately. When I look at the review history https://stackoverflow.com/review/suggested-edits/1851492

lc. reviewed this 1 hour ago: Approve
Jueecy reviewed this 1 hour ago: Reject
This edit is incorrect or an attempt to reply to or comment on the existing post.
Ben reviewed this 1 hour ago: Approve
ljh reviewed this 1 hour ago: Approve
David Olsson reviewed this 1 hour ago: Reject

There are 3 approve (lc, Ben, ljh) and 2 reject (Jueecy, David Olsson) votes. Seems like people might remained in this decision. Also Ben and ljh don't have too much revision activities, they might fall in wrong decision.

I think they just looked at the code formatted and approved it without any checking code content.

Could this be a side-effect of people grinding for reviewer badges?

In my opinion, YES!. Some people do unnecessary stuff just getting badges and this sometimes cause ridiculous stuffs..

Also might be related:

  • I don't think he's unaware that the edit was approved instead of rejected. Apr 4 '13 at 13:06
  • @BoltClock'saUnicorn Of course he is aware. I just want to point him who approved it and why they approved it probably.. Apr 4 '13 at 13:11
  • @BoltClock In fact I was not thinking of checking the approve/reject rate of the individuals involved, so this was welcome either way. :-)
    – Tomalak
    Apr 4 '13 at 13:43

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