14

Here's the situation:

  • User provides a lengthy answer which is moderately down-voted by the community
  • Hoping to get rid of the doom of down-votes, user deletes the answer and introduces a new one, which is actually a slightly edited version of the deleted one.

I know perfectly well that users are allowed to post multiple answers, though it's pretty rare. But is it allowed to re-introduce a slightly different answer twice - just to get rid of down-votes?

  • 3
    I agree it is maximizing the abilities the system allows you but if in the end we have an visible answer that is better accepted by the community then the other one I see not much of an issue. If this pattern keep repeating though I would call it abuse. Does it happen regularly by the same or some users or are it incidents? – rene Jun 19 '17 at 18:42
15

Well, it depends.

If the user has a heavily down-voted post and decides to delete it and post a heavily improved version (because the old one was unsalvageable), that fixes the issues with the previous one, it is completely fine. If the new post qualifies as a solid answer to the question, do not let the fact that it was reposted influence your opinion about the new post.

However, if the new post brings no improvements to the old one, it is an issue, especially if a user does that on a regular basis. In such a case, I strongly recommend you to flag the post(s) with "in need of moderator intervention" and describe the issue in detail. The moderators can later decide what happens to the post(s) / user.

  • Why wouldn't the user just not improve the answer that was downvoted. If its an "improved" revision of the downvoted answer, then the downvoted answer, could have been salvaged. This just screams of, "well it has downvotes so I will improve the answer, by submitting a new answer" – Ramhound Jun 24 '17 at 20:01
  • @Ramhound It is not fair for that user to receive bad feedback for another approach, a new one discarding the downvotes is fine if the answer is improved such that it fits the rules. – Mr. Xcoder Jun 24 '17 at 20:03
  • I am saying judge the answer based on the quality of the deleted answer saying the deleted answer should have been improved – Ramhound Jun 24 '17 at 20:17
  • @Ramhound That should not be taken into account, especially if it was a simple silly mistake that the answerer did not consider, and fixed right away. Keeping the downvotes isn't really fair if you decide to improve your approach, as a result of a simple error – Mr. Xcoder Jun 24 '17 at 20:19
  • @Ramhound : “Why wouldn’t the user just not [sic] improve the answer that was downvoted.”  You know the answer — as discussed here, when people downvote something, they generally do not routinely revisit the post to see whether it has been improved, and they are not notified when the post is edited, so downvotes are hardly ever withdrawn, even if they are no longer appropriate.  (I know you’ve seen that discussion; you commented on it.) – Scott Jun 24 '17 at 23:29
8

It can often be the case that an initially incorrect answer can't recover from early downvotes, so it can be that deletion and reposting a corrected version is the only thing to do.

However, if this becomes a pattern, or is done without significant improvements to the answer then it is more of a problem and potential abuse of the system.

So, for a once in a while thing I'd just let it go. Vote on the new answer as you see fit - though vote on it in isolation, don't let the fact that there was a previous incorrect version influence your vote. If you notice a pattern then raise a custom flag for the moderators. We'll take a look and decide if the user needs some guidance.

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