Sometimes I find a question which is very similar to one I want to ask on a Stack Exchange sub-site. The background and situation are the same. However, there are still some points I need to ask about, which are not present in the original question. How can I expand the original question to include these points? If I ask about these points in an answer, I will be punished.

What should I do to add my problems to other's questions?

1 Answer 1


If I understand correctly, you're describing a situation where you want to ask a question, there's already a question that's very similar, and yours differs on some key point not addressed in the other question. You want to avoid having yours closed as a duplicate so you can get an answer that takes your specific situation into account.

The best way to do that is to, in your question, link to the other question and explain the difference:

I found this other question (link) that is similar to mine, but that question asks about (whatever) in general, while my question is specifically about (special case).

On The Workplace we sometimes see this pattern where what is different is that the other question is about peers while yours is about your manager, or the other question is about some career element in general while yours is about your first job, or the other question is general and yours is specifically about working in Italy.

I've found that questions that take this approach fare better than ones that are asked without any evidence of searching for similar questions first. Once somebody casts a "close as duplicate" vote, it's easy for others to miss what makes yours different and instead add their votes. Of course, if your question does get put on hold you can still edit to make the difference clearer and then ask for reopening. But prevention is better than cleanup.


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