Questions tagged [answer-quality]

Metric used to work out if an answer is sub-par and needs "attention". Not publicly detailed or gutted.

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623
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8answers
347k views

Are answers that just contain links elsewhere really “good answers”?

I have often wondered at the practice on Stack Overflow, Server Fault, and the other sites where someone will ask a question and an answer will come in that says Look here: http://link ...
41
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6answers
3k views

How does Stack Exchange attempt to prevent low-quality questions and answers?

Due to its massive (and growing) size, there are a lot of low-quality questions and answers appearing on Stack Overflow. I'm concerned that an influx of low-quality questions and answers create a lot ...
91
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22answers
4k views

Heuristics for detecting a bad answer?

A lot of bad answers are slipping through the cracks on Stack Overflow. You can see some examples at Thanks a lot for this post ... and other first time user curiosities I've been paging through ...
361
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19answers
11k views

Stack Overflow technology makes me write bad answers

Today I had some time and felt like writing a relatively good answer on Stack Overflow; explaining both the underlying mechanisms and good practices, unlike usual declarative answers in a "do that" ...
15
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8answers
2k views

How should helpful answers that are just links be handled? [duplicate]

There has been a "movement" of sorts on Stack Overflow. Users are flagging questions that are just a link or little more than a link, like: https://stackoverflow.com/a/4737028/396458 https://...
22
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1answer
649 views

Make hot questions with multiple answers age away faster on smaller / subjective-ish sites [duplicate]

Due to extended exposure to wide SE network, hot questions tend to attract certain amount of low quality answers 1 2 3. These answers would better be (and eventually are) removed, but on smaller / ...
80
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4answers
710 views

Vote to delete answers as duplicates of earlier answers

Scenario: An answer is posted that is substantially the same as an earlier posted one, and its existence adds no (more) value. Suggestion A specific new "duplicate" action, not a flag, like ...
13
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12answers
317 views

What answer to accept?

There are so many good answers to my questions that it's sometimes hard to decide what answer to designate as accepted. I really feel that more than one is "accepted." What should one do in this ...
30
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11answers
1k views

Down Vote “code only” answers?

I have read this: Why do you cast downvotes on answers? and tried searching for a specific view on this scenario but cannot find. If there is a question covering this already I apologize. Q: Would ...
39
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5answers
853 views

Why are accepted answers immune from Flagging link-only answers as Not an Answer?

Let's assume you agree with the yoda's corrective action to a link-only-answer (#12) of the Faq Post What is an acceptable answer? [A link only] answer must be improved as described above, else it ...
29
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2answers
594 views

Should trending questions be auto-protected? [duplicate]

I noticed today that a request for protection came up due to the the large number of me-too answers on a trending question I answered recently. This got me thinking, since trending questions get far ...
26
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3answers
656 views

Reorder questions picked for hot list based on adjusted hotness score (discard some answers by voting evidence)

Executive Summary The 100 questions are selected for the "Hot Network Questions" list displayed in the sidebar of each site. These questions are designed to showcase other sites in the Stack ...
25
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2answers
553 views

Does an (old) answer that contains only a dead link deserve a downvote?

The other day I came across this answer. The accepted answer only provided a link, but the link was not working anymore. So for me, the answer was not helpful at all. This was even the accepted ...
52
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4answers
2k views

Lots of not-always-useful but well-intentioned answers

In episode 42 of the Stack Exchange podcast Joel Spolsky mentioned something along the lines that some sites (for example, Travel Answers) suffer a little from questions that don't always get useful ...
36
votes
5answers
864 views

How widespread is the “back it up” principle?

Good Subjective, Bad Subjective refers to the Back It Up principle that was developed on an early SE site. I've seen this principle in use on UX (though I can't find an example right now), and citing ...
32
votes
1answer
450 views

Let's clean up the “this is a duplicate” answers

I recently discovered that there are a lot of answers out there that just contain a link and some variation of the text "this is a duplicate". A lot can be found with the query is:answer body:"...
30
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5answers
359 views

Outdated Answers project kicking off on Stack Overflow

As we announced on Meta Stack Overflow, we are kicking off a project to begin tackling the issue of outdated answers. That post goes into detail on the initiative and our approach. We are focusing our ...
16
votes
1answer
315 views

Should we flag answers that only contain a link to another Stack Overflow answer? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What do we do with answers that are just links to other Stack Overflow answers? There are many, many answers that simply contain a link to another Stack Overflow answer, ...
54
votes
2answers
476 views

Increase minimum word count with links

Links alone do not provide a good answer to a question. At the very least, the author should answer the question with a summary of what is behind that link and how it pertains to the question. Are ...
15
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8answers
824 views

Is it harder to write a good question or a good answer?

I was wondering whether there's any evidence to be had as to whether it's harder to write good questions or good answers. For example, from the data available in SEDE or previous surveys. I suppose "...
4
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2answers
158 views

What is the best practice 'etiquette' to tell an answer is outdated and should be updated?

Due to changes in technologies, many answers were outdated. However, these answers were very good for the past, and they might also be useful for the same cases, but not for most. An example is a ...
22
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8answers
1k views

What should I do if I am afraid to post for fear of downvote hell?

--- The General Question --- Should I avoid posting (writing questions or answers) unless I am willing (and able) to put forth the exorbitant effort required to produce "exceptional content". **Will ...
18
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4answers
3k views

One-line answers

I often encounter answers on SO are only one line, and later they are not improved. One of the rules suggests that a user should comment on the question instead of providing a one-line answer (...
14
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2answers
352 views

Quality problems in regex answers [closed]

I've been hanging out in the regex tag a lot lately, and I've noticed something I don't see as much in my other favorites (C#, LINQ, and a couple others): A disturbing number of regex answers are ...
4
votes
1answer
106 views

Do bounties improve overall quality of the posts?

In this post: Do offered bounties affect the reputation gain needed for the Yearling badge? one of the comments said: Bounties don't help improve the overall quality; they help getting an answer ...
10
votes
1answer
246 views

What to do with all 9 answers pretty much the same

I'm taking a look at a question with 9 answers (now removed), which all seem to be pretty much the same. Should any be downvoted/flagged, and if so, which ones?
10
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0answers
115 views

New tab for the /review : Self-Answer

From what I have seen so far self-answer are often thank you message or question asked toward an answer (should be a comment). I think it would be nice to have an other tab in the /review section to ...
4
votes
1answer
149 views

How to deal with questions with a highly voted answer (outdated) and a lowly voted answer that will only become increasingly relevant

Like this one: How do I get Haml to work with Rails? This is actually pretty common to rapidly-evolving stacks like Rails (for that question, haml-rails is considered as the current standard) I ...
15
votes
4answers
329 views

Web apps to make your answers awesomer! [closed]

What kind of web apps can you use to make your answers awesomer? This includes things like: Interactive regex tester Pastebin, online REPL/IDE, image hosting Visual aids to generate charts, trees, ...
10
votes
2answers
235 views

Improvements to handling questions with too many answers

I noticed something today on Software Engineering when dealing with an autogenerated moderator flag regarding "More than 10 answers posted to this question in the past 7 days". Mainly - this flag isn'...
9
votes
3answers
221 views

If more than N answers are submitted within T seconds, how can we promote obscured good answers?

A good indicator of a trivial question is that many answers are submitted in a short space of time. I suggest that we consider both the quality of the question, and the quality of answers that result....
-23
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3answers
1k views

Struggling to understand Stack Overflow's philosophy [closed]

I'm new here and find the prevailing attitude and tone of the site extremely authoritarian and offensive. It is certainly not encouraging one to participate and share opinions etc. I have just been ...
6
votes
2answers
160 views

More SO users are not reading the post before replying or voting

This is definitely a tenuous question without any hard data, but I want an answer: Is the quality of the average SO user going down? A few years ago SO seemed to be both a source of good answers ...
2
votes
3answers
168 views

Can we limit answers from users with a history of bad answers?

It's great that we now have measures that will limit questions from users with a history of bad questions. Can we do the same sort of thing for users with a history of bad answers? I.e., if a user has ...
17
votes
3answers
528 views

Am I supposed to be an expert? [duplicate]

On Stack Overflow, as well as other Stack Exchange sites, I wonder what is the level of expertise required to participate? Does the Stack Exchange community prefer more questions with average quality, ...
14
votes
1answer
173 views

Is “Use A Framework” a valid answer?

In the same vein of https://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/45176/when-is-use-jquery-not-a-valid-answer-to-a-javascript-question I'm starting to see answers (won't name names) for very simple or ...
4
votes
1answer
156 views

How to measure the quality of a user's answers?

I'd like to generate a Data Explorer query which makes a reasonable ranking of users by the average quality of their answers. Reputation is heavily influenced by quantity. As Jeff points out, ...
2
votes
2answers
255 views

What is the purpose of leaving this -2 answer as is?

https://stackoverflow.com/a/5302162/127880 I flagged to have this removed, as it is completely worthless in just about every conceivable way. Moderator disagreed. Do crap answers like this make SO ...
2
votes
0answers
63 views

Answering with just code [duplicate]

Is it bad practice to answer with just code and no explanation? I had someone complain about this once but everyone seems to do it.
-4
votes
1answer
135 views

Poor answers shouldn't count towards the accept rate [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Count only questions with upvoted answers towards the accept rate percentage Possible Duplicate: Count only questions with upvoted answers towards the accept rate percentage ...
-7
votes
1answer
93 views

Complete versus complex answers [closed]

In this question, the OP asks "How could I create a randomly-variable-length list of instances (objects) of this class Teacher without using any list comprehension (maybe from vectorization or ...