I've been doing a decent amount of editing over on SO for the last few days. I rather enjoy it (which seems odd for being an engineer). But I was just wondering... are my edits more of a burden because someone needs to come along and approve them?

I guess I'm just wondering if I should hold off on all the editing until I get to the 2k posts required to edit on my own.

I suppose the answer is probably going to be "if it is a helpful and substantive edit, go ahead" but I just wanted to make sure. Thought maybe some of the real editors who have to approve my edits could chime in.

4 Answers 4


Well, if it were seriously a problem the feature wouldn't exist at all. You've had 9 edits approved over the last two days; I can't easily see your rejected suggestions, but it seems like you're doing alright unless you've had a lot more and the rest were rejected. Also, SO gets a lot of suggestions (21 in the last hour), so 9 in two days isn't a huge impact on the queue

  • Good point about the feature not existing if it wasn't useful. And no, I haven't had that many rejected. Maybe just one I think. Thanks for the response.
    – Tim
    May 18, 2011 at 20:35
  • 2
    @Tim "Tim had 10 edit suggestions approved, and 2 edit suggestions rejected."
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    May 19, 2011 at 14:13
  • @Grace Can we see our own list of suggestions approved / rejected? (sorry if this is a stupid question, I can't find it)
    – Rup
    May 19, 2011 at 16:31
  • 1
    @Rup No, but at the bottom of each suggestion it has stats about the reviewers and the person who submitted the suggestion, so you can check one of those (e.g. here's one of Tim's) May 19, 2011 at 16:42
  • 1
    @Rup On top of Mrozek's note, the "list" of suggestions on each page is something of a scrolling list, so you can keep clicking through to eventually cycle through your full list.
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    May 19, 2011 at 16:54

I think you absolutely should do a proportion of edits before you reach the thresholds for being able to make changes without peer review. You get a much earlier and obvious indication if the edits you're making are perceived as being worthwhile, if you're still within the peer review level. That way when you pass the limit you can go crazy and edit with confidence :)

It's always seems a bit strange to me that you can get to 2K, with really bad grammar, without having made a single edit that's been reviewed and suddenly you're free to go 'fix' other peoples mistakes...

I'm not saying this happens a lot, but I am in favour of practicing in the car with somebody else there, before you take it out alone on the freeway... :)

  • 2
    "It's always seems a bit strange to me..." Amen to that sentence! I've seen at least three posts today that were edited by a 10k who changed one tag or one misspelling and left the entire rest of the post alone! Most recent example: stackoverflow.com/questions/6051175/…
    – jscs
    May 18, 2011 at 22:31
  • @Josh Caswell: People can find a niche. I got edited two days in a row on some of my early answers because it's != its. I don't always succeed, but I do at least think about it now so even small edits can make a difference. I think part of the small edit problem stems from the number of edits that get made as questions are hot off the press. People want to make the change they've immediately noticed and don't want to get their edit bumped because somebody else has done one, so don't read the post as carefully as they could. I'm as guitly as the next for that and it can be hard to break.
    – forsvarir
    May 18, 2011 at 22:49

if it is a helpful and substantive edit, go ahead

Pretty much. The pending edits queue empties pretty quickly, and most things don't sit in there very long. Tag wiki and tag wiki summary edits seem to be the ones that stick around the longest but mostly because those are the ones that folks familiar with that tag need to be able to review.


It's worth doing as long as:

  • you've improved the question
  • the time it takes to read and approve your edit is less than it would take to redo the edit.

As long as that's the case, you've saved the community more time/effort than you've cost it.

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