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I have noticed that more often than not people tend to respond with answers to questions in comments as opposed to creating answers for a question. Any thoughts as to why? I am getting more heavily involved and just want to stay in tune with status quo.

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    you can't be downvoted for comments, just flagged.
    – Mike
    Feb 4, 2014 at 17:53
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    Personally, I'll give an answer in the comments section if I can't verify my answer's correctness or if it's basic enough (1-2 sentence answer) Feb 4, 2014 at 18:20

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This is speculation of course, but mostly I imagine people answer in comments because the answer was very simple, or the question was against StackOverflow's guidelines. Or it was a duplicate. There is also the known fact that you can't downvote a comment, while answers leave you vulnerable to reputation loss.

In any case, this isn't something you should be too concerned about, StackOverflow's reputation is just a ploy to make people answer questions, just like Reddit has karma, and other websites and their own "game" mechanics.

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