What's everyone's opinion on closing an older question as a duplicate of a newer one, if the newer one is clearly the better resource? I'm looking at a special case right now, where the two were posted by the same person; the newer was migrated to SU before a commenter pointed out it was a repost. Is it considered good practice to close the older as a duplicate of the newer?

More generally, is it ok to do that for separate questions posted by different people, if the older question went unanswered but the newer has a good answer?

(I should probably mention I saw this question, but I think this is separate)

  • 1
    Try meta.stackexchange.com/questions/1375/… instead. That question seems to focus a lot on the moderator abilities, but I think the general conclusion that can be drawn from it is that these should be handled in a case-by-case basis as appropriate. Which is about as non-answer as I can get, hence why this is a comment.
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    Jun 28, 2010 at 18:48
  • @Grace Ah, that was much more helpful. So for us non-moderators, should we just flag posts rather than voting to close? Jun 28, 2010 at 18:51
  • Isn't it ironic to see this question being marked as duplicate o.O
    – ABcDexter
    Aug 19, 2016 at 12:08

3 Answers 3


Most of the time double posts by the same user are caused by back-button edits, so the newer question is the one the OP really wants to stay. Even if the questions come hours or days apart, I'll usually elect to keep the newer one, since it will typically have more/better content.

In the case of duplicates by different users, I do take the dates into account. The older question usually takes precedence, if all other things are equal. The quality of the newer question can definitely sway my decision though.

  • What if the newer is exactly same as the older one. (3+ years apart), but the newer one is answered before the older one. So in that case which question is supposed to close and why? Feb 27, 2017 at 14:10

No matter which one came first, the most relevant one should be left open, and the other one closed as duplicate.

  • 7
    and/or merged ? Jul 14, 2010 at 20:06

I don't think date asked should matter.

Whichever question has less/worse content should be closed.

  • Just don't call it a 'duplicate' if it came first. Say, it was "made redundant" or some other stupid phrase instead.
    – user291305
    Apr 4, 2017 at 16:20

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .