I have a feature request: https://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/189649/add-checkbox-including-other-with-free-text-for-reason-of-up-down-voting

It has recently be marked as duplicate of an older request: Encouraging people to explain downvotes

My question really is a duplicate.

As a test, I tried to post an answer containing a new request on a post said to be related in my original question. That can be found here:

Require a net +1 for questions in high-volume tags to become answerable

I immediately got slammed by a 27K power user for hi-jacking the question. In this case, both the title and content are truly a duplicate. I might want to move some or all of the content from my over to the answer.

I looked at the related posts and got slammed, not the duplicate. The duplicate can be found here: Change Down Voting to Require Comment for Why & Change Flag to Report

What should I do in such a case?

How do I move my content from my post to the other already existing post?

If I have a duplicate on SO or meta-SO and it is being referenced and linked on the meta site, when do I delete the original myself?

  • 1
    Cut and paste what, to where?
    – Mat
    Jul 21, 2013 at 11:45
  • @Mat I revised the question to be more clear.
    – DHorse
    Jul 21, 2013 at 11:47
  • 1
    @DHorse Can you provide a link to the question? If it is "Closed" or "On Hold", cast a reopen vote and it will go into the review queue.
    – Mooseman
    Jul 21, 2013 at 11:47
  • @slhck I am getting repetitive in the post. I am not sure how to clarify things sorry.
    – DHorse
    Jul 21, 2013 at 12:12
  • 1
    @Mooseman I've updated the post for more detail. I will have to do more research on the "On Hold" "Closed" process. My Closed post was reopened but I am currently question blocked (new with down votes) and voting blocked (lack of reputation) on the SO site. I see the undelete/vote button where my POSSIBLE answer got moved into the question at: stackoverflow.com/questions/10185170/…
    – DHorse
    Jul 21, 2013 at 12:24
  • 3
    Based on my assumptions I tried to clarify your question. Please review my changes and edit your post if it doesn't convey what you're trying to say.
    – slhck
    Jul 21, 2013 at 12:28
  • 1
    @slhck Nice edit, very concise. I shouldn't have been combining issues where duplicates might be questionable with my question of how to deal with my truly duplicate post. Thanks.
    – DHorse
    Jul 21, 2013 at 12:32

2 Answers 2


I think I'm getting what you're trying to ask. So, you have…

  • a feature request about non-anonymous downvoting
  • this feature request closed as a duplicate of one of the thousands dozens of other feature requests asking for a mandatory explanation of downvotes

And now you're asking if you should post your new proposal as an answer to the older question, or keep editing your new feature request so that it doesn't constitute a duplicate?

Either is fine.

You're free to post a (complete) answer on the other question, suggesting an alternative UI or workflow. People here do that all the time, and it wouldn't be the first time Stack Exchange implemented what an answer suggested—not the original question.

It's also okay to make your new request distinct from the previous one and have it reopened. Just explain why it's different. As icing on the cake you may list all the other requests you've already found.

Please don't do both, though. If you have a similar request, post a comment on the older question, linking to it. Don't hijack the older question by posting an answer with a link to the new one.

But remember that for topics such as "require a downvote explanation", the Meta community is at the point where it doesn't even want to see any new request in that direction. The incentive to find a somewhat related duplicate request and close the new request is quite high—nobody wants to be dragged down the same old discussion every time somebody complains about getting downvoted anonymously. The majority does not want to be forced to explain their rationale for voting every time they click the vote button.

To sum it up, I see you're trying to participate actively here, suggesting new features, trying to find out how Meta works, but I suggest you take it a bit slower, read through the discussions we've already had, see how the community reacts to new suggestions, et cetera. Believe me, there are several requests about downvote explanations per week. Maybe even per day. Don't get your hopes up high to change this (core) aspect of the Stack Exchange sites.

  • Good answer, If I did put an answer on the post I am duplicating, should I paste the comments over too?
    – DHorse
    Jul 21, 2013 at 12:36
  • 1
    You can't migrate comments. Not even moderators can do this, and there's little benefit from doing so—comments are usually just noise. Ideally, I'd start writing a new answer from scratch, always with regards to the original question it's posted on.
    – slhck
    Jul 21, 2013 at 12:38
  • I'm not sure I follow. You have a Meta question about a question on SO (the main site)? In general you should never delete any question of yours—that's the safest way to go about it.
    – slhck
    Jul 21, 2013 at 12:41
  • Thanks that is what I was asking.
    – DHorse
    Jul 21, 2013 at 12:44

Interpreting and summarizing the answers I have received and found:

1) I think I would now cut and paste the original post to the correct thread.
2) I would append the higher ranked answers (with accreditation) to my post, but not the comments.
3) If it was short, I would put it in the comments but if longer put it in an answer (for formatting reasons).
4) If it wasn't a good answer but merely there due to length, I would preface it with my reasons for it being in that location.
5) As instructed, I would not delete my duplicate post.
6) I would probably always put change requests into an answer format.

If I no longer have to worry about comments, cut and paste seems quite clear and easy.

Does this sound correct? Could I improve on this?

  • 4
    Well, I wouldn't say cut and paste it. Write it like a response to the question you're reading. This is not a forum—there are no threads, really. You also don't need to append any answers or comments. Paraphrase them, work them in naturally. In general, change requests are fine as separate questions. No need to put them as answers to other questions—by all means not. I'm thinking you just need to spend a few days on Meta and see what happens, then you'll learn naturally what's the best way to go about it.
    – slhck
    Jul 21, 2013 at 19:12

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