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Clarify the CW behavior of answers to CW questions
Shog9
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##Why have Community Wiki posts?

One of the goals of Stack Overflow is to be a continually evolving source of good information. Community Wiki posts help enhance the wiki aspect of the site.

##How do Community Wiki posts work?

Community Wiki posts work by transferring ownership of the post from the original author to the community. They make the post easier to edit and maintain by a wider group of users, but they do not contribute to any user's reputation. Community Wiki posts are marked as community wiki.

Some of the key features are:

  • Community Wiki posts are owned by the Community User, not by any individual user.
  • A much lower reputation (100) is needed to edit a community wiki post.
  • Voting on a community wiki post (up or down) does not affect any user's reputation.
  • The original author still gets badges based on community posts.
  • The original author keeps the reputation gained (or lost) before their post entered community mode.

##How does a post become a Community Wiki post?

There are several ways a question or answer can enter community wiki mode, and most of these ways will occur automatically based on the rules of the system.

Posts enter community wiki mode when:

  • The body of the post has been edited six (6) times by at least four (4) different people.
  • The post has been edited eight (8) times by the original owner.
  • The post's author checks the community wiki checkbox when composing the question or answer.
  • The post is edited by its original author, who when doing so opts to check the community wiki.
  • An answer posted to a Community Wiki question will also be Community Wiki. Note that when a question is made CW after answers have already been posted, the existing answers are not normally converted to CW automatically.
  • The question generates more than 30 answers (15 on Super User). In this case, the question and all answers will enter community mode, as will any future answers.
  • A moderator has reason to believe that the question serves better in community wiki mode.

* note that the rules outlined above are based on observations; the actual behavior of SO is subject to change without notice, and may well have done so since this was last updated...

##Miscellaneous

  • There is no way to reclaim your post back from community wiki mode. This is to prevent exploits and gaming of the system.
  • Rollbacks do not reverse any of the community wiki mode calculations.
Justin Standard
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