Recently I asked several questions on SuperUser site. I answered them with quotes from other users. But the community closed my questions as duplicates. I might be wrong about different things, concerning the questions. But it's beyond me why they're calling them duplicates. They share: 1) content of answers (the quotes) and 2) topic. But they: 1) have different phrasing, 2) ask about different things, 3) have different actual problems behind them. The Help Center says:

duplicate - the fundamental goal of closing duplicate questions is to help people find the right answer by getting all of those answers in one place

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please edit this question to explain how it is different or ask a new question.

But my questions "haven't been asked before". So what do you consider a duplicate in the context of this incident?

  • 2
    Seems the community approved of allquixotic's perspective on your case, at least. Are you trying to raise a larger issue than what you've already asked on Meta Super User? If so, it might be a duplicate... ;) Apr 22, 2014 at 22:52
  • Meta Super User is the right place for this discussion, unless you want to generalize the issue, which your question here is not doing. All you're asking here is to give you a second opinion, in the hope that the MSE community will contradict the SU community. Nope, that's not how it works. Apr 23, 2014 at 0:39
  • Different sites may have different specific rules about what they feel is a duplicate. Are you certain you don't rather want to discuss this on Meta Super User? Apr 23, 2014 at 16:46
  • 1
    @Martijn Pieters I tried, didn't I? People here explained me the situation better than there.
    – x-yuri
    Apr 23, 2014 at 16:53
  • Still downvoting... Do you want me to delete the question? Or you want the next person to not repeat my error? Nothing's wrong with the question. What's wrong is the idea I had in mind.
    – x-yuri
    Mar 26, 2019 at 12:29

1 Answer 1


An exact duplicate occurs when

  • The same question has been asked before, and
  • The original question has already been answered. The answer does not have to be correct.

Some exceptions:

  1. Questions which are repeatedly asked in minor variations can be closed as a duplicate of a canonical question. Canonical questions are questions that are asked in order to provide a general reference for the topic; see the PHP tag wiki for some good examples of canonical questions, especially this one.

  2. Questions that are answered with exact copy/pasted answers. These are generally indicative of duplicate questions; the system even has a special auto-generated moderator flag for them.

  • Still, could you clarify some things? You said that my actions were useless effort, or something along those lines. What did you mean by that? Also, what was I to do to make it right? And, you seemed to say the community should have dealt with it in some other way, not by marking a question a duplicate. In what way?
    – x-yuri
    Apr 23, 2014 at 16:51
  • 1
    I'm not sure how this could have worked out better. I see what you were trying to do with the question titles, but copying material that already exists to another place on the same site is not the way to go about it. As I already explained in my answer, the SE software already has answer duplicate detection, to identify attempts at copy/pasting.
    – user102937
    Apr 23, 2014 at 16:54
  • What was I trying to do with the question titles? I just put questions for information I've found. And was beaten by being honest, specifying links to original answers. I could rephrase the quotes and nobody would likely have found out. But not that it that matters. More importantly, what if I would answered the questions based on information in other questions, not quoting other answers? I believe SuperUser would've benefited from those questions. Would that be okay?
    – x-yuri
    Apr 23, 2014 at 18:01
  • 2
    I know. What you're trying to do is called "canonical questions." They are an experiment, but the concept is not fully baked. Many canonical questions get closed, because they don't strictly follow the Q&A format that SE uses. The problem is not an easily solvable one.
    – user102937
    Apr 23, 2014 at 18:05

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