Like most people on here I have a slight allergy to promotion. However rather often I find that an answer could be completed by referring to another answer. And because I can remember my own answers best. Those are the most likely to come up.

To what degree is this allowed? Is referring to a single question okay but saying "I'm an expert in this field see my other answers" too much?

This question shows how promotion of external media is frowned upon even when the answers are relevant. Is self promotion of your own answers/profile here regarded less serious of an offense?

  • 5
    Anytime you want to link to another answer it's a strong indication that you should at least consider voting to close as a duplicate.
    – Servy
    May 19, 2015 at 15:00

2 Answers 2


I can think of two "no" and one "yes" scenarios. There may be more.

Someone asks "what is 1 + 1?" and you remember answering that before, so you answer, "as I detail in this other answer {link}, it is 2." Wrong. You should flag or vote to close the question as a duplicate of the one you answered.

Someone asks a question that is not a duplicate of one you answered, but is related somehow. If you can answer the new question, do so, and if you like, include a reference like "My answer to {question} may also be relevant." If you can't answer the question, leave a comment like "Related: {link to question}. This is a correct reference to your other answers.

Someone asks a question about a topic in which you are an expert, and you find yourself needing to state or prove that you an expert. Stop right there. You never need to do that. Really. Never. Linking to some other answers of yours, even highly upvoted ones, is not appropriate in this circumstance. If there are people who need that information they can get it from your profile. Your old answers don't prove you're an expert anyway, any more than the answer you're writing when you consider referring to them does.

Promoting yourself within the site, including linking to answers and questions you think are related, is generally not considered spam and not disapproved of. Promoting yourself in your profile, including links to external websites, things you're selling, and so on, are also not considered spam. Linking to external references from a question, answer, or comment, requires the link to be relevant, and for the material you're providing to have value without the link.

Above all your motivation for asking, answering, or commenting shouldn't simply be to have a place to put the link. If you truly want to know, or truly want to answer and help someone, you'll be fine. Make that your first consideration and use links when they serve that purpose, rather than your own motivations of gaining rep or money, and the decisions and distinctions become easy.

  • Thank you for a very clear answer Kate. Please don't consider me self indulged for the "I'm an expert" bit. I would never dare saying that in any answer:)
    – laurisvr
    May 19, 2015 at 22:02
  • It's not about self-indulgence; you might very well be an expert. It's that saying so in an answer isn't needed (good answers are welcome from all) or helpful (a bad answer doesn't get better if the writer insists they know a lot about the topic and tries to show that with links to answers or external sites.) A good answer is a good answer no matter who writes it. May 19, 2015 at 22:08

If your other answer completely answers the question, then it is more than likely a duplicate question. If it is somehow not a duplicate question, then at least modify your answer to match the question don't just copy paste the content over, and definitely don't answer with just a link to your other answer.

If the question is not a duplicate, and you have composed a straightforward answer but you also happen to raise some points addressed in other answers of yours then by all means link to them. Feel free to point out that you cover aspect A here, or that you answered a question on fooing the bar there - but try to do this in addition to an already reasoned out answer. Doing this is not promotion in a negative aspect, it is just offering some further reading in addition to an already posted answer.

tldr; Close duplicates first. If it is just a supplement to your answer, then by all means link to it.

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