Currently we have a check while a user is writing an answer to notify him that someone else has answered.

You can then refresh to see that answer, and if its better than yours, vote that up and skip answering yours. etc etc.

How about adding to that notification that someone has voted a possible duplicate to this question. It serves a similar purpose and may be quite useful to focus answers to those answers that have experience :P


I am absolutely pro this feature request, but would implement it like this:

  • User writes an Answer
  • Another Users supplies a Closevote
  • User hits Submit for his Answer
  • User is forced to review Possible Duplicate
  • User can then decide to
    • post the Answer to the possible duplicate (counting as a closevote)
    • post the Answer to current question (maybe with an explanation why)
    • cancel the Answer

Allowing for easy addition to an existing possible duplicate would benefit the creation of canonicals instead of spreading good answers all over the place.

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This seems superfluous, since in this case the answer would be already visible, and if it was already a possible duplicate, the person writing a new answer should have already seen it and not written a new one.

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  • Could you clarify? Either I'm misunderstanding you or you me. – Ólafur Waage Sep 21 '09 at 20:35

What are the odds, really, that a duplicate question would be asked in the same couple minute time frame that you're taking to write your question?

I do much of my writing in notepad, then copy/paste it into the question window, where I change formatting (if I need/want to). So - my "ask" time is ~30 seconds.

Then I get the little robot/human form :)

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  • 2
    I suspect he means a notification that there are new votes that the current question duplicates a previous one. – dmckee --- ex-moderator kitten Oct 6 '09 at 3:02
  • I ment an answer, my bad. – Ólafur Waage Oct 6 '09 at 9:27
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    aha! that is a different problem entirely :) ..how do you know it'd a duplicate answer, though? I mean, unless you and I both post, say, df -h as a quick answer, and a direct comparison can be made, you're going to have wording, formatting, stylistic, and detail differences – warren Oct 6 '09 at 13:05

I'd be happy enough to see such a a feature, but would consider it fairly low priority.

That said: judging from the number of new answers I've seen made to questions with multiple "this questions duplicates " type comments, I'm not sure that it will have the effect you hope for. The incentives are to ask and answer duplicates rather and people respond, until that changes we will be fighting a losing battle to suppress duplicates.

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