I sometimes edit questions of Stack Overflow posters to improve them. Adding some tags or reformatting messages.

It happens that my edits are rejected with the message:

"Your message is mostly code, please add more details."

And this, even if I only added a tag.

  1. How was the poster able to post his question, then, if its message was troublesome relative to Stack Overflow / Stack Exchange checkings?

He should not have been able to post his original message, if it's was a wrong one.

  1. The one who edits the post to help for a problem of reformatting the content, for example, isn't the one able to enter more explanation about its goal inside.

To the ones who added the first comments and downvoted too fast:

Take the time to read the question, you don't understand the problem.

A posted a wrong message, and I'm B editing his message, for civic duty, but I'm only to add a tag on it.

How can I be rejected while adding a tag on his message, if he, A, was able to post it?

Here is a sample of the trouble :

Failed to obtain JDBC Connection; nested exception is java.sql.SQLException: interrupt, asked today.

I attempted to add jdbc, mybatis and mysql tags to it and received the message "It looks like your post is mostly code; please add some more details."

Second example : adding an if-statement tag, on :
I am trying To write an else if statement but the program ends on the statement. This is my code

Reject message appearing

  • The poster can do what they want (mostly) with their posts. – Ollie Oct 10 '20 at 19:01
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    Does this answer your question? Error Message: It looks like your post is mostly code; please add some more details – Ollie Oct 10 '20 at 19:02
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    @Ollie This is not the question (you're reading my post too fast). The problem is : how the poster A can be able to post his question, and me B editing it (to add a tag on it), am I rejected by a message A didn't received ? Else he would have not been able to post his original message. – Marc Oct 10 '20 at 19:26
  • @Ollie Not a duplicate. This is asking about the case where the user is editing a post that consists mostly of code, that was posted before the system checked for that, and getting an error message to prompt them of that fact even though they're only making a tag edit or other minor edit. – Sonic the Curiouser Hedgehog Oct 10 '20 at 19:29
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    Involved posts are not old posts : some have been created the week we are. – Marc Oct 10 '20 at 19:38
  • Then we need examples otherwise we'll give you the most likely answer and you'll just say no not that case. Let's not make this a guessing game. – Robert Longson Oct 10 '20 at 19:39
  • That said, I'm not sure if this affects more than one site, or if that filter only applies on Stack Overflow. If it does only apply to SO, then we have to close this here as site-specific, and it should be filed over on Meta Stack Overflow instead. – Sonic the Curiouser Hedgehog Oct 10 '20 at 19:39
  • @Ollie: No, they can't vandalise their own posts (e.g. blanking them out). – P.Mort. - forgot Clay Shirky_q Oct 10 '20 at 19:44
  • Why isn't this posted on Meta Stack Overflow? – P.Mort. - forgot Clay Shirky_q Oct 10 '20 at 19:49
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    @P.Mort.-forgotClayShirky_q various other sites such as Code Review, Game Development and the various Stack Overflow in <language> may well have the same check. Are you sure none of them do? – Robert Longson Oct 10 '20 at 19:51
  • I just managed to make an edit, seeing the OP of the example has a higher rep then I do on SO, they might have not seen the message at all. – Luuklag Oct 10 '20 at 22:20
  • Humm, I did... Next occurrence, I'll take a screenshot that I'll add to the link. – Marc Oct 11 '20 at 5:29
  • Added a new example of the trouble with a screenshot. – Marc Oct 11 '20 at 10:25

The rules have changed over time. In fact in the distant past this rule did not exist at all. So the poster posted the question, then the system gained a new rule (or the rule was made stricter) but it didn't automatically delete all the posts that couldn't have been posted because they'd fail that new rule.

It's also possible they posted their code via one of the mobile apps. These are discontinued although a number of old timers still have them installed on their phones. The posting rules from those mobile apps may well be different to the website as the apps haven't been maintained in some years now.

If you want to edit the post you'll need to fix everything that's wrong with it. If you can't and the question really is mostly code with no explanation then perhaps it's better to vote or flag to close it as unclear, or alternatively just move on and spend your time editing something that is fixable rather than something that isn't because the information to fix it does not exist.

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    Involved posts are not old posts : some have been created the week we are. If it happens through mobile apps that the problem happens, it's still a bug. – Marc Oct 10 '20 at 20:01
  • I will, as soon I find a next sample. I encounter this problem one time per ten edit done. – Marc Oct 10 '20 at 20:04
  • Question edited with a sample. – Marc Oct 10 '20 at 20:32
  • That user has been around for 7 years, perhaps they are using the mobile app. – Robert Longson Oct 10 '20 at 20:49
  • Then it's the mobile app who has the bug. But it's an hypothesis. Can someone who have it check if it is the case ? – Marc Oct 10 '20 at 20:56
  • Note that a) I'm not sure you can install the mobile apps any more b) they don't fix bugs in the mobile apps. – Robert Longson Oct 10 '20 at 21:29
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    I'm usually editing newcomer's posts to help them. How members since today can download a mobile application that doesn't exist anymore ? And if this mobile app is still downloadable and that "they" don't fix bugs on it, it explain why there is a bug and it still doesn't make that bug acceptable for instance. – Marc Oct 11 '20 at 10:26

I haven't been able to reproduce this bug, even when using a sock puppet to test on production. It doesn't seem like there are discrepancies between the "mostly code" check on editing and authoring. Without seeing more examples, it's possible that there are other ways a post may be changed that do not have the same check in place, but unless I can get reproducible steps, I'm marking this as for now.

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