# How do we deal with octuplicate questions?

Now, the answer seems to be Balsamiq, Axure, Pencil, Pen and Paper and Protoshare. But that is not the point.

None of these questions have any close votes, non of them have any ref to others that exist.

Is there a better way of organizing this information so it's not so splintered?

• Sam: Nontuplets. – TheTXI Jul 24 '09 at 14:19

If they are suitable close they can be merged; flag them for moderator attention. For example, those that are web can probably be looked at to see if a merge is appropriate; but some others might not be; "User Interface Design Tool" isn't as web-specific, for example.

• Wow? Of all the places I would expect a downvote, this wasn't it... – Marc Gravell Jul 27 '09 at 19:18
• not me, in fact, I just upvoted you and jeff, someone seems to be on a rampage ... – waffles Jul 27 '09 at 22:20
• I have a pretty good guess who and why... – Marc Gravell Jul 27 '09 at 22:21

These questions should all be tagged appropriately so they come up together in the related questions sidebar.

As I've said before, people will ask the same questions using zero words in common. We need duplicates -- linked through topic specific tags -- so they're findable depending on which of the 5 different ways of asking is the way you will happen to ask.

I thought Jeff had said something in a podcast that he didn't mind the plethora of questions like this since there was a thousand ways to ask the same question, or something to that.

I do like the idea of either editing the question or adding comments to say something like You might also check these questions for additional insights

Then again it is a proactive type step too. If I see a question I'm pretty sure I've seen asked before, I try and steer the user that way before the answers pile up too much.

Close as duplicate (maybe even have the mods merge the topics) so that they all point back either to the oldest or the most well-written one.

I didn't check all of them, but I'll take your word for it. It's very surprising that none of those got marked as a dupe. I'd suspect this sort of thing is the exception, not the rule; usually somebody catches it. I guess there aren't a lot of people marking gui as a favorite tag.

All you can do is vote to close and add dupe links to them. It's going to be difficult for anyone but the moderators merge the answers, which is what ought to be done.

Maybe make finding the really common duplicates a game of sorts, like this question is trying. Then people can gain rep by finding duplicates and admins can have clear, less ambiguous lists to merge.

I say don't go cowboy with closing/merging duplicates - make sure you know what you're doing as otherwise you can mix-up benefits such as favourites etc. EG: If you have 3 questions, each heavily favourited, be very very careful before merging/deleting as you would be destroying some intrincic value that SO delivers by answering subtle aspects.

Licensing is just such a subject and two questions may look the same, and could in fact be the opposite. GPL and LGPL are opposites in terms of use in commercial software but both are called free.