This is related to many questions:

It is known that most editing activities (typo correction, retagging, constructive revision due to feedback in comments, etc) happen in the early life of a question/answer. Sometimes editing may happen concurrently and/or without the knowledge of the original author and/or other editors, and this can cause a question/answer to quickly become a CW when this was never the intent.

The proposal is simple: keep track of all revisions as before, but revisions within the first 15 mins should not count towards CW-trigger.

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    I would love to see this implemented. – squillman Jul 9 '10 at 0:43
  • @squillman: Yes. I think unlike the other proposals, this one is simplest to implement. There's no need to add blocking feature or concurrent editing warning signs etc, just ignore all revisions within the first 15 mins in the CW-triggering logic and that's it. – polygenelubricants Jul 9 '10 at 0:48

This was a pretty large issue with the original conversion requirements. The dogpile of multiple folks who all not only think to edit the same post, but also edit all differently too. Sometimes they just saw different things to fix, other times they fixed the same thing just with different words. No matter how it was spun, of all the triggers this had the highest amount of false positives. This was an issue not just within the first few minutes of a post's life, but really in general. Sometimes it takes people some time, as you just have a bunch of people who see a post and notice someone missed something. And people notice that person missed something.

I digress. This is no longer an issue because we have removed all of the automatic triggers that convert a post to community wiki. Instead, flags will be raised for moderator attention to note that something has happened that may be of concern.

In the case spoken of in this post, the velocity of editing is actually more reason that a moderator should pay attention to a post. If a huge bunch of people pile on a post, it may be an edit war or it could be something else that may require a more definitive edit path, if not outright temporary locking.


This answer is based on my answer here.

I support this for questions, but not for answers.

Almost all of the content that needs a lot of editing is in questions. While we should encourage users to ask questions well, the fact remains that some users don't know how to post code, English isn't their first language, etc. It's not very fair to those users who really try but aren't able to communicate their ideas in the best way that others can understand. And it isn't fair to the answerers either since they won't be able to gain rep on the question after it's gone into CW mode.

The reason why I don't support this for answers is that it would further exacerbate the Fastest Gun In The West problem; there is already a 5-minute free edit grace period for the answerer anyway.

The core idea of a wiki is for it to be community-generated and updated content, where many people edit the post to contribute over a long period of time. In this way all the triggers to make a post CW make sense, except there is no bounding on the time density of the edits.

Improving a question (without the actual content changing) isn't really in the spirit of what a wiki should be, and as I mentioned, going into wiki mode through tons of people being generous enough to help format a post really isn't fair to the asker or potential answerers. The wiki-ness of a post should be evaluated after the content is up to community standards, which happens pretty quickly in the case of a new question.

  • I agree with most of your rationale, but wouldn't a better solution be to just raise the threshold (number of edits) for CW mode on questions? That ought to be comparatively easy to implement. – Aarobot Jul 9 '10 at 1:43
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    @Aarobot: Good point, I think that's one solution, but I also think that only partially accomplishes the goal of a CW post being "content that's updated over long periods of time." If the number of edits is increased, then it would simply take longer for a post to go CW, which isn't necessarily desirable. Under this proposal, the length of time would stay the same, but allow for the initial content to be brought up to community standards before the clock starts ticking, so to speak. – Jon Seigel Jul 9 '10 at 1:59
  • @Jon: Good suggestion about this being for questions only; I'm fine with that. If implemented, it would be a vast improvement over current situation. Sometimes I see a new question that needs formatting fix, and I don't do it myself because I fear that others may already be doing the same thing, and I don't want to contribute to the gang-editing that triggers CW unfairly. – polygenelubricants Jul 9 '10 at 10:54
  • @poly: Once again, you get a big honking warning if you're about to trample on somebody else's edits. You seem to be greatly overstating the problem; can you point to a recent instance (i.e. not from nearly a year ago) where this has actually happened, supposedly by accident? – Aarobot Jul 9 '10 at 13:08
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    @Aarobot: I've trampled someones edits a couple of times and never got a warning, although I have seen the warning before. I'm not sure it works very reliably. (Which is a separate issue.) – Jon Seigel Jul 9 '10 at 14:39
  • @Jon: Indeed, I can understand that the Ajax warning might be flakey since it's on a timer, but good design demands that would-be editors be bounced back to a confirmation page upon submission if they're about to mangle somebody else's edit. I would so much rather see the team work out the kinks in the existing system than rely on clumsy hacks and workarounds that merely give the outward appearance of working correctly. The latter strategy leads to mysterious "bugs" and confused, superstitious users. – Aarobot Jul 9 '10 at 16:07
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    @Aarobot: Agreed, but again, that's a separate issue (which I would like to see resolved!). There have been instances where posts have gone CW due to many distinct edits all happening within a short period of time. – Jon Seigel Jul 9 '10 at 16:50

Edits within the first 5 minutes don't register at all. That, plus the preview, should be more than enough to take care of typos and minor edits.

Extending the limit to 15 minutes would, IMO, only encourage people to post garbage quickly to get their foot in the door and then edit it into something meaningful at their leisure. I've got nothing against quick-and-dirty answers, but there's a limit to how quick and how dirty an answer can be before it's just noise.

Most of the activity that happens on a new question/answer (except the wildly popular ones) happens within the first 10 minutes anyway, so even though that's when most people edit, that's also the time when it's most detrimental, since the votes may no longer make sense after all the editing.

Bottom line, I don't want to see this implemented. The 5-minute non-logged editing window is more than enough.

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    Edits within the first 5 minutes from multiple editors DO register. If 10 different editors gang up on a question within the first 30 seconds, making exactly the same edit, that's 10 revisions. – polygenelubricants Jul 9 '10 at 1:10
  • @poly: Then a better solution would be to change that behaviour. I don't see how a 15-minute grace period would prevent multiple editors from clobbering a post into CW status - it can happen any time a question is bumped. We also already have a very annoying warning that keeps popping up if you continue editing a question that somebody else already made changes to; if people override the edits knowingly then they're probably being jerks. – Aarobot Jul 9 '10 at 1:14
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    The grace period being requested isn't for "not recording the edit". It's for "not counting towards the CW edit limit". It's not an extension of the current limit, but adding a separate window for a different system. – Grace Note Jul 9 '10 at 14:16
  • @Grace: What made you think that I didn't understand the distinction? Recorded or not, I don't want to see a feature that encourages rapid-fire edits as a rep-gaming strategy. The reason I pointed out the grace period is because edits that aren't recorded at all are, by definition, not counted toward wikification. – Aarobot Jul 9 '10 at 16:00
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    I understand now that you understand the distinction, but your statement "I don't see how a 15-minute grace period would prevent multiple editors from clobbering a post into CW status", combined with the general diction like "extended", led me to believe you were focused on a "15 minute non-logged editing window" rather than a "15 minute non-CW editing window". Because technically, the latter would prevent multiple editors from clobbering the post into CW in said 15 minutes (which is what the OP was going for). That said, I'm not exactly for this feature either. – Grace Note Jul 9 '10 at 16:06

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