Take for example this question. It was closed as a duplicate of two other questions. However, the close message says:

Or, in words:

This question was marked as an exact duplicate of an existing question.

(emphasis mine)

In case of more than one duplicate target, think the message better say:

This question was marked as an exact duplicate of existing questions.

  • It doesn't imply that it has just one target question, but say that it has one target in particular ;)
    – nicael
    Jul 9, 2016 at 20:40
  • 2
    Wait, but itsa pluralization bugs!
    – nicael
    Jul 9, 2016 at 20:42
  • @nicael not sure about that, as it's different from the common "1 answers" bugs. Jul 9, 2016 at 20:43
  • @Adam isn't status-declined more fitting? I was aware this might be by design, that's why I also included feature-request. Jul 10, 2016 at 7:53

2 Answers 2


A few word changes should be implied for the close reason to end this confusion and the need for different close reasons. Maybe the close reason should include the fact questions can be marked duplicate of one or more questions:

This question has been marked as an exact duplicate of one or more questions

To match this with the "The question already has an answer here" header, we can change the wording slightly to:

This question already has an answer within the following questions:


This question already has one or more answers here:


Well, you could argue about the This question already has an answer here since it can and most likely will have multiple answers.

But I don't think that is the point. I think the point is: this question has already been asked and it already has an answer. Either of these questions is an exact match.

So there are not many matching questions, no just one. The same is true for the answer: there can be multiple answers but it is only one answer that provides the most useful answer.

  • Still, this is wrong wording. "already has an answer" does not imply action, just that there is one answer, among the answers, answering the question. Plus, number of answers is dynamic and can change at any time. However, "marked as an exact duplicate" is an explicit action where users choose the target, or targets, and this one is static and never change. Not sure I explained it well, sorry if not. (And while I somewhat disagree with your answer, not enough to downvote. :)) Jul 9, 2016 at 20:59
  • It seems not all agree with me and not all agree with you. Our posts give mixed feelings until now... Jul 9, 2016 at 21:36
  • Yup, which is not rare here. Jul 9, 2016 at 21:54

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