Should edits attempting to improve the content of an answer be approved?

For example, I reviewed this edit on Stack Overflow.

I'd say I'd approve it, but I was wondering if the asker of the question would get the option to approve/reject the edit himself? Is it actually up to me to decide whether or not to approve such an edit?

  • A totally new user changes the source code in a highly upvoted answer of a high rep user. Ahem no! Or are you an expert in the matter and did verify the changes?
    – juergen d
    Apr 4, 2013 at 11:45
  • 5
    It depends - do you know enough about the subject matter to make a judgement on whether this is in fact an improvement? If you don't, keep away.
    – Oded
    Apr 4, 2013 at 11:47
  • Fair enough, I'll keep away next time!
    – Joetjah
    Apr 4, 2013 at 11:58

1 Answer 1


When to approve?

  • If there are some spelling mistakes in code/other text.
  • If grammar is improved (but doesn't change the meaning)
  • If broken links are fixed.

When to reject?

  • If it changes main code.
  • If it adds additional code. (Though it depends sometimes.)
  • If it adds another solution.
  • If edit summary fails to explain diffs I observe.

When to skip?

  • If you are not aware of the subject (i.e. tag)
  • If you can't judge what to do (obviously!)

(PS: This is what I do while reviewing.)

  • 1
    "when to reject" += "If edit summary fails to explain diffs I observe" (not applicable for this particular case, with pretty detailed and easy to read summary, but as a general guideline makes a good sense doesn't it?)
    – gnat
    Apr 4, 2013 at 12:10
  • 1
    @gnat - Fair enough. Hope you edit it. :)
    – Himanshu
    Apr 4, 2013 at 12:12
  • "If it changes main code"? Doesn't that include corrections to main code when it's wrong?
    – djechlin
    Apr 5, 2013 at 1:05
  • 2
    Hope you don't mind but I've used this answer as a template for my question Apr 5, 2013 at 10:50

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