Using your typical duplicate answer as a reference:

Typical duplicate.

I think that the "has an answer" text of the duplicate section should either be linked to the duplicate answer.

Or, if that's untenable, clicking the "has an answer" text could cause the browser to scroll up to the "This question already has an answer here" box and highlight it or something like that.

Why?

  1. Banner blindness is a real thing, and so some people might miss the block up top.
  2. It's not intuitive to tell someone there's a link but have that link be somewhere else. Even if I know that I would need to scroll up from the "marked as duplicate" section to get to the duplicate link, that's just not good UX.
  3. No real change in front end design other than wrapping three words with an anchor. Unless this would be a huge pain to implement on the back end, it's a minimal change with a big upside.
  • 1
    There is a Meta Stack Overflow post about this exact topic: meta.stackoverflow.com/questions/267318/… - You're definitely not the only one that feels banner blindness is a problem. – JonK Sep 9 '14 at 9:42
  • 1
    What will you do when a question is closed as dupe of more than one other questions? It's not very rare, and the questions appear as a list. – Shadow Wizard Sep 9 '14 at 9:47
  • 1
    @ShadowWizard Then display a list, the way the current "invisible" banner displays a list. – deceze Sep 9 '14 at 9:48
  • @deceze no, I mean what will the "has an answer" text link to? The first question? Last? With highest score? – Shadow Wizard Sep 9 '14 at 9:49
  • @ShadowWizard I don't think that Brendan means that literally the text [has an answer](...) should be linked, or at least I don't think that'd be an appropriate way to do it. The content of the "has an answer" banner at the top should simply be reproduced in the banner below the question. – deceze Sep 9 '14 at 10:08
  • @deceze yes he does. See reason #3: "No real change in front end design other than wrapping three words with an anchor" – Shadow Wizard Sep 9 '14 at 10:55
  • @ShadowWizard OK, in that case: that's certainly not the way to do it. :) – deceze Sep 9 '14 at 11:04
  • @deceze What makes you so certain? If I were to add a link into the existing framework, that's where I'd do it. It certainly wouldn't hurt anything. – Brendan Sep 9 '14 at 11:55
  • 1
    @Brendan I'd certainly make it more obvious than that, which is the whole point, right? I'm not sure people would notice a single underlined word any more than they'd notice the current banner. Why not explicitly list all dupes? This question ... an answer here: - dupe 1, - dupe 2, - dupe 3 If those answers do not ... – deceze Sep 9 '14 at 12:02
  • @deceze- Ah, I understand. I don't do a lot of feature requests; I figured I'd have a better shot if I didn't rock the boat too much :) – Brendan Sep 9 '14 at 12:03
  • You cna't list all the dups because dups are manually chosen. You could list all the dups users have indicated. Theoretically there should really only be one duplicate though which all other duplicates link to. – Scott Sep 11 '14 at 16:41
  • I totally agree. Before I became more accustomed to Stack Exchange, that box made me grind my teeth. This question ... already has an answer - but you aren't going to tell me what it is, right? Sure, further up the page, quite possibly out of view, is what the other question is, but that is very counter-intuitive. If you were going to tell me where it is, I would expect it to be right there in the paragraph which tells me about the problem. – Nick Gammon Feb 1 '16 at 23:30
  • Having the banner mixed with the content of the post is probably the problem here. meta.stackexchange.com/questions/166473/… – Stéphane Gimenez Feb 8 '16 at 11:13
  • 1
    I've asked this previously; glad to see people are more on-board this time. – Möoz Feb 8 '16 at 21:14
  • So we agree this needs to be done... is there source code that I can just go and program? Or can I do nothing to help resolve this question? – Alex Mar 7 '16 at 23:12

I think this is a problem as well.

First, no one reads the answer before they read a question. So placement before the question text is counter intuitive. It asks users to back up, rewind,and look before the question for an answer.

The example used in this thread/question/answer is a simple one - easily viewable "above the fold" as it were. However, imagine a longer question which a user scrolls to read.... they get to the bottom, see it's marked as a duplicate.... then have no clue where the duplicate may be.

While not expressed in the best of ways, we had a user post a comment on meta.graphicdesign.stackexchange.com who was clearly frustrated by this very thing. I can imagine for the reason I've posted above.

Second, The placement of the duplicate link is positioned, and often colored, in a manner which promotes user blindness. I've found this true across all SE sites. It's visually a banner, and as such easily falls into the "content blindness" experience many users get while viewing any site.

Combine #1 and #2 above and it's completely disregarded by many new users more than it's noticed.

Sure, those who have experience with SE sites are used to it and know it's there and overcome the "banner blindness" consciously when we need to.

But that does not help new users.

The link should be moved, in my opinion, and be made visually more prominent.

After the question text, within the actual question, would be one of the optimum positions in my opinion.

Possible Example...

enter image description here

This would clearly allow the message and link to be seen after a user has read the question, which is when they are seeking the answer.

Even moving it below the tags, and above the "marked as" message would be better - provided it is visually different than the "marked as" message below it.

  • perhaps instead put the ist in the lower banner aswell – joojaa Sep 13 '14 at 4:46
  • See my answer (stab at reorganisation) what i mean (assuming its not a list). And yes it should probably be amendable as a list of questions. – joojaa Sep 13 '14 at 7:01
  • Separating body and tags by the possible duplicates? Not a good idea. – Deduplicator Jan 25 '16 at 19:58
  • @Deduplicator it could be below the tags, above the "share edit reopen.." links. My image was merely a quick mock-up to show the concept - not designed as an absolute guide for implementation. – Scott Jan 25 '16 at 20:15
up vote 19 down vote
+500

It would be more intuitive if the duplicate would be listed in the lower banner.

I have prepared the following image showing where it would be, in my mind, the most intuitive. Now the sentence is complete in one place and it's still visible.

Duplicate in lower banner

Obviously I didn't spend very long thinking of the idea so the real, or best, design might differ. The problem that has been solved is that it is no longer confusing having the data in 2 places at the same time. However, the closers could be possibly be less prominent.

Additional thoughts

The [duplicate] itself should probably also be a link. The text in the duplicate box instructing you to ask a new question should be different. It should instead say 'ask a new question that clearly clarifies how it's different' or something similar, with links to FAQ or instructions about research.

up vote 11 down vote
+1500

For me, the word Duplicate itself should be the link itself to the question and the has an answer part should be linked to the accepted answer or the top answer of the original question to avoid confusion. That is just for better UX and user experience.

Like @joojaa, the bottom block should be a complete sentence:

Marked as duplicate of {insert link here} by so and so

This should be to avoid confusion and to make a more visual statement to other users. Now if we add the features suggested by me, the top block (just assume some other question is a duplicate of this one) would be like this:

This question already has an answer here:

Link to duplicate answer in 'marked as duplicate' section 3 answers

And the bottom one:

Marked as duplicate of Link to duplicate answer in 'marked as duplicate' section by so and so by so and so


Here is the offending code for the above text feature for the original one:

<div class="question-status question-originals-of-duplicate">
    <p>This question already has an answer here:</p>
    <ul>
        <li>
            <a href="/questions/253450/new-profile-pages-are-out-bugs-and-feedback-master-list" dir="ltr">New profile pages are out - bugs and feedback master list</a>
                <span class="question-originals-answer-count">
                    75 answers
                </span>
        </li>
    </ul>
</div>

and the one for the bottom:

</div>
</td>
        </tr>
                    <tr>
            <td class="special-status" colspan="2">
                <div class="question-status">
        <h2>                    <b>marked</b> as duplicate by <a href="/users/21960/al-e">Al E.</a>, <a href="/users/245167/infinite-recursion">Infinite Recursion</a>, <a href="/users/153355/tchrist">tchrist</a>, <a href="/users/152515/doppelgreener">doppelgreener</a>, <a href="/users/140890/martijn-pieters">Martijn Pieters</a> <span dir="ltr"><span title="2015-04-17 12:20:39Z" class="relativetime">Apr 17 '15 at 12:20</span></span>

Now all we need is to change the above to add some links there and there and problem solved! (Question used is my own, which has been marked as duplicate)... And if we edit this a little bit more, we can change this:

<p>This question already has an answer here:</p>

To this:

<p>This question already <a href="<insert question link">has an answer</a> here:</p>

And this:

<b>marked</b> as duplicate by <a href="/users/21960/al-e">Al E.</a>, <a href="/users/245167/infinite-recursion">Infinite Recursion</a>, <a href="/users/153355/tchrist">tchrist</a>, <a href="/users/152515/doppelgreener">doppelgreener</a>, <a href="/users/140890/martijn-pieters">Martijn Pieters</a> <span dir="ltr"><span title="2015-04-17 12:20:39Z" class="relativetime">Apr 17 '15 at 12:20</span></span>

To this:

<b>marked</b> as duplicate of <a href={insert link to question here}>{insert question title here}</a> by <a href="/users/21960/al-e">Al E.</a>, <a href="/users/245167/infinite-recursion">Infinite Recursion</a>, <a href="/users/153355/tchrist">tchrist</a>, <a href="/users/152515/doppelgreener">doppelgreener</a>, <a href="/users/140890/martijn-pieters">Martijn Pieters</a> <span dir="ltr"><span title="2015-04-17 12:20:39Z" class="relativetime">Apr 17 '15 at 12:20</span></span>

The above are examples but it should be how things should go applying the features and making BalusC satisfied...

EDIT: With the newer duplicate text at the bottom:

enter image description here

Specifically:

This question was marked as an exact duplicate of an existing question. If this question is different, please edit it to explain how it is different or ask a new question.

Instead of "an exact duplicate of an existing question", we can do "an exact duplicate of an existing question." So basically, something like this:

marked as duplicate by Sha Wiz Dow Ard, Nathan Tuggy, Werner, ale, MichaelT Jan 19 '16 at 23:02

This question was marked as an exact duplicate of an existing question. If this question is different, please edit it to explain how it is different or ask a new question.

and if in conjunction with previous statements:

Marked as duplicate of Link to duplicate answer in 'marked as duplicate' section by so and so by so and so on this date

This question was marked as an exact duplicate of an existing question. If this question is different, please edit it to explain how it is different or ask a new question.

if necessary. I support everything made before this edit and I do understand if adding the link in three different places might be too much. But I think the third link to the duplicate should help.

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