Before deleting my entire SE account, I just wanted to give you feedback in this specific case, even though you probably don't care for a non-power users opinion: https://stackoverflow.com/a/58374211/4521733

I was in a hurry, found the solution and quickly posted a link only answer to my own question, since there was no other answer yet.

I knew it's not a good answer, but better than nothing. At least I thought so.

Also, I haven't accepted the answer, making the question still unanswered.

  • I might have came back after testing it, and update my answer.
  • Or another person could have found my question and write their own answer based on my posted link.
  • Or in the worst case, the link could expire in a few decades, making the answer invalid and deletion-worthy.

But no, your moderators decided to delete it entirely instead of just commenting, editing or downvoting.

Now, since my question doesn't even have a single answer anymore, I decided to delete it entirely, even though it was considered useful by two people.

Effectively, your moderators made a not so well-written information completely worthless just for the sake of moderating something or gaining some internet points.

However, actions like this, as well as your ongoing war on irrelevant stuff like pronouns, have made me questioning the network as a whole.

I finally decided to never ever contribute or ask here again and therefore delete all accounts across all sites, as soon as I understood your dark pattern deletion process.

Thanks to all people here contributing in good faith!


closed as off-topic by gnat, Zoe, Robert Longson, TylerH, Machavity Oct 14 at 15:26

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "This question's topic is only applicable to one specific site in the Stack Exchange Network. Questions on Meta Stack Exchange should relate to features or policies that commonly apply to the network or the software that drives it, within the guidelines defined in the help center. You should ask this question on the meta site where your concern originated." – gnat, Zoe, Robert Longson, Machavity
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    You say you haven't tried the answer yet, and the answer is a link. I certainly appreciate the information you're trying to share, but we're not in a hurry. Just take your time. Come back when you have 10 minutes or so, and write up a proper answer. Nobody will blame you for doing a week later, a month later, we will still appreciate full answer. – Bart Oct 14 at 13:56
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    I don't see why you would delete the question if, as you say, it's useful. After you've tested the answer, if you find it actually helps, then post it again with both the same link as before along with additional information that gives the essential details and how it worked for you. By deleting a, in your words, beneficial question, how are you not hurting the community? – Jason Bassford Supports Monica Oct 14 at 14:03
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    @Bart I know you can wait for an answer, since you don't look for it. But from my end-user experience, I appreciate it way more to find a question with bad/broken answers, than a question without a single answer. However, this was just my personal opinion I wanted to share with you before leaving, because I feel these "over-regulations" are the main issue why this community feels so unwelcoming. – user406980 Oct 14 at 14:13
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    I'm sorry you feel that it's unwelcoming @sbo. Unfortunately we have long ago determined that link-only answers are a real and frustrating problem, causing more harm than good. And even if you would say "but I would have come back to update it", that's unfortunately not something we can distinguish from the "answer" left by those going "look over there, I'm out". We have to look at the long term and definitely mean no harm. – Bart Oct 14 at 14:33
  • @Bart no worries. I don't take it personally, it's just an overall observation I've made and wanted to share with you since I know most contributors are here in good faith and your strict guidelines draw a wrong picture. Same with flagging this feedback as a duplicate of an entirely different question... As written before, I know the answer in question is bad. I haven't asked if it is good. And I know there are reasons for your guidelines. But just because you've made some rules a decade ago, doesn't mean they are good under every circumstance. But no need to continue discussion, thank you! – user406980 Oct 14 at 15:05
  • Curators have only a limited allowance of close/delete votes. A,bad answer uses one up, no answer does not. – Martin James Oct 14 at 15:55
  • BTW, I find it ironic that you think power users' opinion matter in the middle of a storm caused precisely because power users' opinion doesn't matter. – M.A.R. Oct 14 at 16:04
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    @Jason Bassford I deleted it out of anger. I undeleted it now and added my answer as a comment. – user406980 Oct 14 at 16:47
  • @M.A.R. not sure if my english is that bad, but there's so much misunderstanding going on here. I critizised general SE guidelines under certain circumstances, and somehow it's flagged off-topic, despite my question title being pretty straight-forward. IMHO the answer in question should have been converted, downvoted or commented. But not deleted. That's the whole point of this post. Also I talked about my opinion as a non-power user in your views, not your opinions in SO Inc's view. And yes, that also sucks and plays a part in why I finally decided to leave the entire network. – user406980 Oct 14 at 17:21

This is the answer in question:

enter image description here

You should've added that as a comment to the question, since it's not a complete answer.

Answers should still work if the sites they link to go offline. Links are icing on the cake, but an answer should work without them.

Furthermore, no moderators were involved in that case. The answer was deleted by multiple ordinary users. They didn't gain "internet points" from this. In fact, there's no personal gain involved in the deletion of an answer, whatsoever.

That all said, if you really want to delete your account, you're going to have to go through the process described in the help center:

  • Thank you for your answer. A bit OT, but do I have to go through every site and delete my profile and as soon as all profiles are deleted, my StackExchange main account will automatically be deleted? Do I understand this correctly? – user406980 Oct 14 at 15:18
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    I don’t know, @sbo. I never looked into it too much... – Cerbrus Oct 14 at 15:19
  • Okay, thank you anyway – user406980 Oct 14 at 15:21

Once a question has a an answer, some people won't add another one. They look at the summary on the main page that says how many answers there are, they see 1 and they don't click the link and don't even look at the question. This is one reason not to "waste" an answer slot on something that is not an answer.

More fundamentally, the "answer" area is reserved entirely for answers. Not comments, not jokes, not "I have this problem too", not "hey did you ever figure that out" not "ok well those are all great answers but now I need to center it any suggestions" -- and we have a number of mechanisms to enforce that. It has been decided that "link-only answers" are not answers. So they get deleted.

If you were just holding a place until you could flesh out the answer, well you can undelete it and edit it. But if you were just trying to help with a link, that should have been a comment. Mods sometimes convert link-only answers to comments, but that's not something to count on. What you can count on is learning how these sites work (and asking your question here is a great way to do that) and then working with those mechanisms.

Your fundamental disconnect is believing "this might be useful: [link]" is an answer. On these sites, it is not.

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    "if you were just trying to help with a link, that should have been a comment": If you vote-to-close a question as a duplicate, the system automatically adds a comment with a link to the other question. A comment, not an answer. So the designers of the system think only comments are a suitable type of post for a simple link-only response. – Raedwald Oct 17 at 12:27

This is a so-called "link-only answer" and the site Stack Overlow has a policy against posting them for good reasons. Namely that lot of sites in the history of the Internet have died out or lost credibility because over time, they ended up as nothing but a collection of dead links. And an answer which is nothing but a link to an external site adds no value to this site.

So no, a low quality answer isn't better than nothing. If it is wrong, misleading or contains a broken link, the site loses credibility. A site with low credibility lose reputation and money both, and it will rank lower in search engines.

See Why and how are some answers deleted?

If you wish to share relevant info through links, you can do so by posting a comment instead of an answer.