I was shown the below answer as part of "First Post" reviews.


The name was shown as a different user, with a recent timestamp, and with 0 upvotes. Though, the answer made sense. I opened the question to get some context. I saw an answer with the same content, with someone else's name, with 53 upvotes, and as the accepted answer. I came back, and checked the answer shown again. Both matched word-by-word.

It looked like a new user posting the most popular answer once again, to get some easy upvotes.

I looked up how to respond to that and found this answer:

What to do when plagiarism is discovered

It seemed to make sense, so I left a comment, saying that it seems to be a copied answer, without giving credit, which isn't good. And I was planning to flag the answer.

Then, I got this message:

STOP! Look and Listen. This was an audit, designed to see if you were paying attention. You didn't pass. Your review was inappropriate. This was a high quality post and you should have considered leaving it as-is or even upvoting.

So basically, I ended up asking the same person not to plagiarize his own work. It looked like legitimate plagiarism.

Wouldn't it be good to show the actual name, or if that may bias the reviewer's reaction, at least hide that answer when he/she opens the question page?

To understand better, I even clicked on the user's profile and was surprised to see he was the same person as the one who had posted the answer.

  • Also: one of the golden rules of Stack Exchange is "Vote for the content, not for the user." – Glorfindel Sep 28 '18 at 20:15
  • @BradLarson I understand that changing the answerer may be necessary, as seeing some popular SO user's name might bias people. But it would be useful to just remove that answer from the answers for the reviewer. But looking at the questions you mentioned, it seems to be more embarrassing, if my comment would have been posted. But it seems that it wasn't posted in my case(thankfully). – Tushar Sep 28 '18 at 20:16
  • @Glorfindel : I agree to that. But plagrised content would be an exception. Right? This scenario raises a false alarm of a literal copy-pasting. Specially, for new reviewers like me. If I see this again, I will first click on user's profile, smile and move ahead. – Tushar Sep 28 '18 at 20:19
  • 1
    Well ... if it's plagiarized, it doesn't matter who posted it. Technically, it would be possible to have a 100% copied answer (which was previously downvoted and deleted) as a 'negative' audit, and you'd be right to flag it. But I have yet to see that happen in practice. Most of the times, the plagiarists add a spam link in the answer. – Glorfindel Sep 28 '18 at 20:22
  • A valid scenario of an exact copy paste(without spam), can be It's a good answer, let me just copy it, and get a few upvotes. Just something that came to my mind when I saw that. – Tushar Sep 28 '18 at 20:27

You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .