In What is the meaning of <==> in Ruby, someone asked the sixth Spaceship operator question in Ruby, which is an exact duplicate of What is the Ruby <=> (spaceship) operator?. It's so blatantly a duplicate, that there's four questions in "Related" that have <=> in them.

Yet a 10K user answered the question without voting to close it, or even noting it's a duplicate. And got 11 upvotes for his troubles.

Is this appropriate behaviour?

  1. The answerer has 10K, so he must know about the rules on exact duplicates by now.
  2. The related questions listed <=> three times, so you could see it's an exact duplicate without doing a single click.
  • How are you certain that the one who provided the answer knew it was a duplicate? The answer was posted before the comment indicating a duplicate. I also remember merging the 'answer' the OP made with the question, I don't recall seeing any close votes (which would have prompted me to consider closing or merging the whole question once done)
    – Tim Post
    Apr 6 '11 at 22:58
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    I am entirely confident that this is a duplicate question, but I am unable to find the duplicate because there are so many questions about duplicate questions. I am upset about this, I was looking forward to noting the duplicate state as an answer and seeing what happened.
    – Charles
    Apr 6 '11 at 22:59
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    @Tim: Having four questions with <=> in "Related" is a useful hint. And the lack of close votes is part of what I'm complaining about! Apr 6 '11 at 23:02
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    I asked Jon Skeet about this once (or twice) and he said that each question is slightly different so he gives a slightly different answer.
    – Gabe
    Apr 6 '11 at 23:03
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    Where do you think they got their 10k from?
    – random
    Apr 6 '11 at 23:30
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    @random: From gaming the system? (Sorry if that was meant to be a rhetorical question) Apr 6 '11 at 23:34
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    Take it however you want. But a lot of users just don't care about duplicates and will post answers anyway because it's quicker for them than to stop polluting.
    – random
    Apr 6 '11 at 23:38

No, they should notice it's a duplicate, but they don't always.

I can't say too much because this happens to me on Meta all the time. I rely on the Related Questions that come up when you tab out of the Title box, and never look at the Related links to the side. I will search also, but SO search sucks.

  • I also don't scan the 'related' list to the right unless I've found a question through searching that doesn't have answers that help me, or if I'm looking to see if something might have been asked before. Almost never prior to answering questions, but I do tend to spend a little time looking for duplicates of very basic ones prior to answering (if only to avoid wasting time on a question that will soon be closed)
    – Tim Post
    Apr 6 '11 at 23:22

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