I have a question on Stack Overflow which some one has taken the liberty of editing massively. I reverted the question, and in my re-revision stated, among other things, that I felt the edits missed the point of the original question.

A little while later I received a personal email from the user in question, trying to apply emotional pressure, which I chose to ignore.

A few days ago, I find that the question was massively edited again by the same user, which, again I rolled back. I have no idea why this user feels the need to hack my question, but I do feel that it's inappropriate.

Just a few minutes ago, the user again edited my question, but this time the changes are trivial enough to overlook.

How can I stop someone from making massive changes to a question which I feel are at odds with the original?

  • I think you answered your own question here, you can rollback the changes, perhaps leave a comment (you can ping editors with @) asking them to stop. – Mark Kirby Mar 6 at 10:26
  • @MarkKirby The point is, that doesn’t stop them from trying again. I’m trying to avoid bloodshed here. – Manngo Mar 6 at 10:27
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    If the user has over 2k rep then you can't stop them. If they keep doing it, you can raise a flag for mod attention and they may be able to make the user stop. – Mark Kirby Mar 6 at 10:30
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    Does this answer your question? Mechanism to prevent edits without approval? – Mark Kirby Mar 6 at 10:31
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    There is an option in need of moderator intervention. Isn't flag is enough with brief descriptions in this situation. – Shree Mar 6 at 10:31
  • @Shree Where do I find that option? I might try flagging it first as you suggest. – Manngo Mar 6 at 10:32
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    You can't prevent edits. You can rollback edits. Moderator can prevent edits by locking a post, but that also prevents votes and/or comments. – yivi Mar 6 at 10:33
  • "Where do I find that option? " Click flag below your question and choose "in need of moderator intervention", this option will let you write a custom reason for the flag. – Mark Kirby Mar 6 at 10:36
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    The question mentioned – CaldeiraG Mar 6 at 11:04
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    Probably the best option is just to accept that moderators will edit your questions and move on with your life. – Geoff Griswald Mar 6 at 14:28
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    That was a pretty heroic and very much laudable edit that that user applied to your post. It made it clearer and brought forth your point, better. We are building a repository of questions and answers collectively, and those edits made your contribution to that repository a little bit easier to parse. Sorry you feel that those edits were not welcome. – Martijn Pieters Mar 6 at 15:18
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    @MartijnPieters Indeed the edits look useful. It's an edit war then. – Trilarion Mar 6 at 16:21

The question is how can I stop someone from making massive changes to a question which I feel are at odds with the original?

Basically you can't prevent the changes to happen.

Well, there is the concept of locking. And right there, it talks about "edit wars" (what is basically what you experience on small scale). But you as "ordinary" user can not lock your content against changes in advance.

So what is left: paying attention. And in your case: to flag the question for moderator attention and to describe your issues with that other user.

It is darn simple: any time you run into another user here ... and that user isn't open for reasonable exchange ... and you feel intimidated by that user: turn to moderation.

When "common sense" interactions aren't possible, disengage. And yes, sometimes that is really annoying.

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    In this specific case, I'm actually tempted to roll back to the edit this specific editor made. The edits were correct, helpful and made the post easier to read. The only reason I'm not is because the state of the question without the edits is not so terrible that an override is necessary. – Martijn Pieters Mar 6 at 15:23

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