I feel users that can edit posts should refrain from editing other users' posts when they are only making minor grammar and capital case edits.

I don't think their edits add enough value to warrant editing the posts, and the original posters may find it irritating.

I have nothing against edits that add significant value (such as changing an external site link to a screenshot).

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    Welcome to Meta, mataal. Since this question has a downvote, you might want to see "How does Meta work?" – Pops Jun 12 '10 at 20:47
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    I just looked at your questions on Stack Overflow, and none of them have been edited. I found only one question on Super User that has ever been edited. So what do you mean by 'users' and 'questions'? – George Stocker Jun 12 '10 at 21:05
  • @george- yes never had that problem on stackoverflow. 'questions' was the generalization. fixing. – user147890 Jun 12 '10 at 21:12
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    I'm not talking about just questions, I've looked at all your posts, and only one has been edited. Besides this one. Which is a little ironic. – George Stocker Jun 12 '10 at 21:14
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    @George - Priceless :) – Nick Craver Jun 12 '10 at 21:33

I, as a non-native English speaker, prefer it the other way: please edit user's posts, including mine, especially for grammar errors!

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Not adding significant value is one thing... but unless it actually reduces the value, why would you care? For example, if I were to go through this question and introduce appropriate capitalisation to make it easier for others to read, why should you object to that?

You may not care about capitalisation and grammar, but others do. The easier your text is to read, the more effective it will be. Why do you think it's worse for your post to be correctly capitalised than not? If an editor is making your post even slightly better, what's the problem?

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    I'm tempted to replace the 's' with 'z' in capitalisation. – George Stocker Jun 12 '10 at 21:01
  • #1 it's not that i care about capitalization, just that i like writing with none #2 the edits that i am referring make grammar edits that are so minor that it's questionable- like i already said "how do i" was changed to "how can i "? #3 these minor edits take away my attention form the action question content to wasting time with such a thread on meta. :) – user147890 Jun 12 '10 at 21:04
  • Because sometimes those are, true, minor edits. Sometimes, on the other hand, somebody takes and rephrases the whole question in a way that I would never had asked it myself. The question still stays the same but I appreciated the old way/style it was put as well. Not everyone speaks the same (form of) english. – Rook Jun 12 '10 at 21:04
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    @mataal: The point of text on a site like this is to communicate. Why do you want to make it harder to communicate than it has to be? You may like writing with no capitalisation, but I think it's pretty clear that people prefer reading with capitalisation. If you don't care about making life easier for those trying to help you, why do you think anyone will bother helping you in the first place? – Jon Skeet Jun 12 '10 at 21:08
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    @mataal While e.e.cummings could get away with lowercase, he knew what he was doing and why. You are not e.e.cummings. To quote from a great article, "There's a world of difference between great poetry and lazy typing." (see everything2.com/title/Capitalize%252C+please for the whole writeup) – Piskvor left the building Jun 14 '10 at 18:07

Your posts aren't necessarily being edited by moderators. Anyone with at least 2000 reputation can edit posts (EDIT : this has been relaxed; now anyone can submit suggested edits for review by 2000-rep users); it's in the FAQ.

Also in the FAQ:

Other people can edit my stuff?!

Like Wikipedia, this site is collaboratively edited, and all edits are tracked. If you are not comfortable with the idea of your posts being edited by other trusted users, this may not be the site for you.

As for my personal opinion — at least until you link to some example questions — I support the editors. What seems like a minor edit to you may be a very helpful clarification to someone else. It also makes the site more professional, which is important for the site goals. All of this goes double if the edits do not change your meaning or detract from your post in any way.

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  • @popular demand- example would be someone editing this question to correct the sentence casing and change something like "how do i..." to "how can i..." – user147890 Jun 12 '10 at 20:54
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    @mataai Perhaps if you learned the simple art of the shift key, people would not edit your posts. People who post all in lowercase are frequently seen as either stupid, lazy or both - those doing the edits are probably doing you a big favour in terms of how your question/answer will be perceived by the SO community as a whole. – nb69307 Jun 12 '10 at 21:01
  • @neil hmmm, i hadn't thought of it that way. i prefer typing in lowercase in most of my internet posts since i saw that was jerry yang's style and adopted it. :) – user147890 Jun 12 '10 at 21:06
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    @Neil - Although I agree on the matter of proper capitalization, that first notion notion is, I must say, one of the most stupid ones I've heard today. Does that mean that people who write in all caps are considered smart, eager or both ? – Rook Jun 12 '10 at 21:09
  • @mataal: i often use an all-lower-case typing style for informal situations. on these sites, that means comments. for answers and questions, i use a more formal capitalization style and grammar -- as Popular Demand says, again, it makes a more professional post. – quack quixote Jun 12 '10 at 21:11
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    @LDIGAS: YES!!!! er, no. wait, what? – quack quixote Jun 12 '10 at 21:12
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    @ldigas Have you heard of this thing called "logic"? If so, please consider applying it to your comments here. How does me suggesting that all lowercase is perceived as bad imply that all uppercase is good? – nb69307 Jun 12 '10 at 21:17
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    @Neil - logic ? Why, yes, I've heard of it. I also found it rather sparse if not entirely absent in your first comment. How else was I supposed to understand it ? – Rook Jun 12 '10 at 21:26
  • @quack quixote - (but also to all others to whom it may apply) - my name begins with an L (@Neil - you somehow got it right. Thank you for that!). – Rook Jun 12 '10 at 21:29
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    @ldigas I really don't think the comment needed explaining, but since you asked: English has a defined correct capitalization. this is wrong. SO IS THIS. This is correct. Just as people correct spelling and grammatical mistakes, they're free (and in my opinion, welcome) to correct capitalization – Michael Mrozek Jun 12 '10 at 21:52
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    @ldigas "Why is it that of all the people in the world, users on computer forums (of all kinds), are so sensitive to language rigidness (almost obsessive compulsive like)?" If this isn't blindingly obvious to you, I doubt you are actually a computer programmer. – nb69307 Jun 12 '10 at 22:30
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    @ldigas: Regarding "The fact that Neil (or anyone else, for that matter) understood the meaning, is obvious. So the poster's task was successful." Understanding isn't a black or white matter. There's ease of understanding. I could have made a spelling mistake in every word in this comment, and you could probably still have understood it... but it would have been more effort. As a matter of courtesy to readers, I view it as a writer's duty to make text as easy to understand as possible. – Jon Skeet Jun 13 '10 at 7:47
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    @mataal Snice the hmanun biran can inrpetret wrods wtih ltetrs in wrong order, you even might call the correct letter-order obsolete. But it's obviously nasty to read, so usually one does write correctly. But hey,if you really want to miss out great answers on your questions just because someone as smart as Jon Skeet doesn't want to waste time on reading lowercase only, that's up to you – Tobias Kienzler Jun 13 '10 at 9:45
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    @ldigas: I would hope that a poster would have investigated the problem before asking a question. You're right that no-one is forcing anyone to answer questions - but surely it's in a questioner's best interests to make their question as easy to understand as possible... which is also courteous. I really just don't see the problem with someone helping to make a question more readable. SO isn't meant to be about expressing a writing preference - it's about communicating information about programming. That is best done by observing normal writing conventions, in my view. – Jon Skeet Jun 13 '10 at 12:33
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    "The fact that Neil (or anyone else, for that matter) understood the meaning, is obvious." If I understand that correctly, it doesn't matter how much you intentionally mangle the message and how much extra processing it will require on the other end, as long as it saves you an entire extra keystroke? Or, to put it your way, "i wnat ur asnwerz,,buttimtoolazy && kewl 2 rite clarly n avryone undrstends my anywai lol"? That, to me, sounds suspiciously close to the infamous "SEND ME TEH CODEZ". – Piskvor left the building Jun 14 '10 at 18:01

If you don't want your questions/answers to be edited/sanitized, then just ensure that you ask the question or post the answer on a professional and smart way so that there's no need to edit it.

Those edits are mandatory to keep the overall quality of the site high. As the FAQ states, if you don't appreciate it, go look for another site, but you'll then live with the fact that you will get more risk to be flamed and/or receive unprofessional and/or low-quality answers.

Little effort, major benefit.

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As cited from the FAQ:

Other people can edit my stuff?!

Like Wikipedia, this site is collaboratively edited, and all edits are tracked. If you are not comfortable with the idea of your posts being edited by other trusted users, this may not be the site for you.

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  • thanks, i hadn't know that it could be edited if i had not selected 'community wiki'. i guess i really "may not be the site for me" if this is the case. – user147890 Jun 12 '10 at 20:50

I've seen people get upset over removing "Hello" and "Thanks!" from posts, but I think this is the first case of someone objecting to fixing legitimate errors. Most of my edits on SO are either formatting code correctly or fixing spelling/grammar/capitalization problems. I guess if you included "by the way, please don't fix the errors in this question" I might leave it alone, but I would be slightly annoyed that you're willingly posting a lower-quality question and actively asking people not to improve it when it does no harm to you

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