21

Writing a novel when a sentence will do is a bad answer.


19

There is no clear-cut "do this or that" anwer to your question. It depends on the specific question, your idea to answer it, your degree of uncertainty about the idea, if the idea can be scetched in two sentences in a comment (or not), and how much you care for your score. Some general recommendations: if you are unsure about the correctness of something ...


15

Most of the "hot" questions with a large number of views have been advertised on social sites outside of SE (reddit, hackernews, etc), so the majority of the views come from Non-Programmers.SE or Non-StackExchange users. Often these users don't know about SE rules or guidelines for answers, and think they can add something to the "discussion" by posting ...


12

I've noticed the same thing. Part of me wonders if it's a problem with the tool. The way I see it, if a question is closed, then its answers are equally suspect. I don't think the review tool should display answers to closed questions for review. If a question is edited sufficiently to warrant reopening and I was going to mod-reopen it in response to a flag,...


11

I think that you are partially correct. A one line answer without any demonstration of experiences or citations of references isn't an example of a great answer. I wouldn't go so far as to say it doesn't fit the site, but it would be something to look at. A short answer that doesn't share experiences or references could be a bad answer, or it could be ...


10

This MSO discussion sums it up well: Of course, obviously the better answers will generally be longer than one line. To bulk up the content, you might consider doing things like: linking to the appropriate documentation including a code sample suggesting a superior alternative approach cautioning against some things that people in the same ...


9

The goal of closing a question is to suspend answer activity until such point that the question can either be improved through an edit or eventually deleted. Even if the question were to be closed, then it is still appropriate in my opinion for others to flag answers that require moderator attention. If it becomes reopened then those bad answers will still ...


8

When we (users with enough reputation) protect questions, the standard text talks about "low quality answers", and it's a frequent thing that is done with very old questions which are resurrected to the front page either due to a new answer (like yours in this case) or because the question was linked offsite. These scenarios tend to lead to many low-rep ...


6

Downvote the ones you don't like. You can't flag them as "Not an Answer" because they really are answers, just not very good ones. They're not spam and they're not offensive, so you can't flag them as that. To flag them with a custom explanation, you'd have to be compelling enough to convince a mod that the answers are actively harming the site, and I don'...


6

I wish the low quality post review tool offered that ability to have close/delete question options for low quality answers, because many times I find the question is useless garbage and removing the whole thing will kill two birds with one stone.


6

Judge an answer by it's quality and correctness, not it's length. Downvote it if the quality is below an acceptable standard, or the answer is incorrect, but don't discriminate against answers just because of their length. Also don't forget, you can always leave a comment requesting the user expand their one-line answer into a more detailed response that ...


4

After analyzing the data, I'm not convinced raising the sensitivity of the current filters will do much good on Programmers: The "quality" checks were designed for sites like Stack Overflow which attract a lot of short, very poorly written questions. Of the examples you gave, only 1 would currently be blocked on Stack Overflow - and that's with the recently-...


3

I don't think that pure citational answers are a good idea, because of legal reasons (but IANAL): All user contributions on Stack Exchange sites are licensed under CC-BY-SA (see the footer of this page). An user can only grant a license to content he created himself. I don't think that simply copying and pasting a few paragraphs of text and applying some ...


3

Most likely reason for the issues with answers quality is a particular bug in a hotness formula ("fake popularity"). This bug causes some of the questions with many answers to be placed unreasonably close to the top of the collider. Issues caused by this are explained in details in a post about particularly troublesome ("sticky") kind of questions affected ...


3

Your example looks like an awesome answer to me. - How would you know if you've written readable and easily maintainable code? - Your peer tells you after reviewing the code. Not only does it answer the question, it also introduces important notions of peers, code review and feedback, ties them together and presents in a way that is easy to understand ...


3

I believe that the poster of the answer might be suggesting using the OpenOffice.org (or LibreOffice) APIs to open the spreadsheet files, access the data, perform the transformations, and then write the proper data into the new database. Although it's not a very good explanation, I don't see how it's not an answer.


2

I'd argue that an one-line-answer with many upvotes is an indication of a bad question. An answer that doesn't need citations, explanations or references to be deemed correct is most likely either an obvious answer ("yes, a compiler compiles") or a highly subjective/religious answer ("Linux is better"). Good questions do not provoke such answers, at least ...


2

The code doesn't really answer the asker's question or add value, IMO. A similar question has been asked on MSO here. Generally on SO I see a lot of "code only" answers get down-voted and/or deleted. The original question is more about "why" and "is this correct" rather than a "I need the code to do this".


2

If you can't find any evidence that the poster is still active on the site (recent posts/votes etc.) then there would seem to be little point in commenting as they are unlikely to see the comment and act on it. Similarly with down-votes. However, in both cases you aren't just telling the poster that this is bad answer but future visitors as well, so a ...


2

Per my reading of this answer written by SE developer, downvotes increase chances of the post getting into Low Quality queue: approach to low-quality auto-flagging, by looking for similarities in posts downvoted or flagged as low quality... It is worth noting that per mentioned answer, upvotes tend to have an opposite effect: referenced post got 2 ...


2

Since all three questions you cited as examples were posted by the same person, and were all heavily downvoted and deleted, it's likely that this user is question-banned, and the problem has already solved itself. The quality filters are not a panacea. All they do is look for textual patterns that are highly predictive of question failure. In that sense, ...


2

Statements like the one you highlighted are like adding "as a programmer" to a question. Its a weasel way to make a bad question attempt to be a borderline or good question. Everyone is going to pretend that part isn't there in most every case just like what happened. This question isn't a good question here, its a do research for me question which is a ...


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