2

votes

{meta] why do exact duplicates of questions get closed?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created January 31, 2012 at 8:06 PM

The thing I don't quite get about PH is we are discouraged from responding to old questions. And yet we can't ask the question a second time. So what if the old question yielded sucky answers, or maybe there is simply more to say about a specific question. What recourse does a person have? We can't revive the old question, but we can't ask it again, either.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11478)

on February 01, 2012
at 02:38 AM

Try a keyword search instead of a tag search. See my previous comment on it on this thread.

Bdf98e5a57befa6f0877f978ba09871c

on February 01, 2012
at 01:32 AM

me too. I'm tempted to contribute to tagging posts, as it seems search looks only in tags. Not sure.

Ab19df3ededa28f7bf7daeba8435b205

(1471)

on February 01, 2012
at 01:23 AM

i do wish the search feature was better.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on February 01, 2012
at 12:10 AM

@Ed, yes. I'm reluctant to edit questions, but I don't hesitate to add or edit tags (or question marks to titles.) We should all make sure that questions with closely related topics share tags as they surface in the active list. Just my opinion.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11478)

on January 31, 2012
at 11:47 PM

@Christopher, you can more readily see the newest answers if you sort the thread using the "newest" tab instead of the default "votes" tab.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11478)

on January 31, 2012
at 11:14 PM

Tags are sometimes idiosyncratic, because they are originally written by the questioner. You can get around this by doing a keyword search, which is in the upper right hand corner of every page. Also, if you see unhelpful tagging, please edit the tags (if you have 500 reputation points, you have re-tagging privileges).

F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e

(3850)

on January 31, 2012
at 10:13 PM

Fair enough. I have to admit I can't get why people respond to "Anyone want to meet up this weekend?" threads 8 months later.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on January 31, 2012
at 10:02 PM

@Renee, LOL! I finally lost enough weight that I can bear to put a mug shot out there. Ah, vanity!

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on January 31, 2012
at 10:00 PM

Kelly, I picked a bad example, really, since there is an "evergreen" element to a restaurant recommendation--at least within a certain window.

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on January 31, 2012
at 09:46 PM

Nance, so nice to put a face to a name!

F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e

(3850)

on January 31, 2012
at 09:37 PM

I respectfully disagree Christopher, only because if you look at it from the future reader's perspective, it makes sense. If I were going to Albequerque (for example), that post would be the first place I'd look, rather than ask the question again, expecting people to repeat themselves and leaving two disjointed questions for the next person who goes to Albequerque.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on January 31, 2012
at 09:03 PM

Well, also because of the voting thing, a new answer to an old question, no matter how useful, might not be seen by most people. When I see an interesting question at the top of the homepage, I first scan the date of the question, then then top-voted answers, and typically quit before getting anywhere near the bottom of the zero-vote answers. And I doubt I'm alone in that behavior. So in this way, I'd kind of like to see questions re-asked if sufficient time has passed to make it likely that new or better information could be provided. I also like when someone posts links to previously asked.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on January 31, 2012
at 08:59 PM

just ignore them, or flag their comments so I can punish them

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on January 31, 2012
at 08:59 PM

I do find it irritating when someone answers an old question that was time-sensitive and specific, like "Paleo restaurants in ___," for a trip that took place six months ago. But not so irritating that I would ever waste a post chastising someone for it! I just move on.

F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e

(3850)

on January 31, 2012
at 08:46 PM

There's one in every crowd. I tend to add to old threads, unless the answers are hopelessly out of date, or like Eric said, you may need to reword/clarify the original question to get better answers.

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on January 31, 2012
at 08:27 PM

When I first started on here I answered some old posts and people gave me flack for it. Sounds like maybe I should just ignore said people.

  • F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

    asked by

    (11698)
  • Views
    949
  • Last Activity
    1433D AGO
Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

6 Answers

9
Af1d286f0fd5c3949f59b4edf4d892f5

(18472)

on January 31, 2012
at 08:52 PM

this exact question has been asked before. bwahahahahaha just kidding ;)

9
F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e

(3850)

on January 31, 2012
at 08:14 PM

Where does it say that we are discouraged from reviving old threads? It happens all the time. There's even a badge for it.

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on January 31, 2012
at 08:27 PM

When I first started on here I answered some old posts and people gave me flack for it. Sounds like maybe I should just ignore said people.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on January 31, 2012
at 08:59 PM

I do find it irritating when someone answers an old question that was time-sensitive and specific, like "Paleo restaurants in ___," for a trip that took place six months ago. But not so irritating that I would ever waste a post chastising someone for it! I just move on.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on January 31, 2012
at 08:59 PM

just ignore them, or flag their comments so I can punish them

F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e

(3850)

on January 31, 2012
at 10:13 PM

Fair enough. I have to admit I can't get why people respond to "Anyone want to meet up this weekend?" threads 8 months later.

F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e

(3850)

on January 31, 2012
at 09:37 PM

I respectfully disagree Christopher, only because if you look at it from the future reader's perspective, it makes sense. If I were going to Albequerque (for example), that post would be the first place I'd look, rather than ask the question again, expecting people to repeat themselves and leaving two disjointed questions for the next person who goes to Albequerque.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on January 31, 2012
at 10:00 PM

Kelly, I picked a bad example, really, since there is an "evergreen" element to a restaurant recommendation--at least within a certain window.

F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e

(3850)

on January 31, 2012
at 08:46 PM

There's one in every crowd. I tend to add to old threads, unless the answers are hopelessly out of date, or like Eric said, you may need to reword/clarify the original question to get better answers.

4
96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on January 31, 2012
at 09:13 PM

As Eric said, " Duplicate questions dilute the resource." I'd add they can fracture the resource if several conversations on the same topic are discussed separately.

The ideal process is to search using a few possible tags and find any existing questions that are very close or on exactly the same topic. If you decide to start another question, you can include a link to one or more existing ones and explain why you've chosen to branch off from them.

In my mind, this site is full of thoughtful, articulate conversations that deserve to be included in relevant questions.

It's easy enough to miss older questions if they happen to have different tags than you thought of, and if others bring them up in their responses that's a good thing as your thread is thereby enriched and the tags on all questions can be reviewed to make sure they share tags that are the same so they all come up in future searches.

I was surprised by your statement about discouraging older questions because many of the active questions on a typical day date back weeks or months.

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on January 31, 2012
at 09:46 PM

Nance, so nice to put a face to a name!

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on February 01, 2012
at 12:10 AM

@Ed, yes. I'm reluctant to edit questions, but I don't hesitate to add or edit tags (or question marks to titles.) We should all make sure that questions with closely related topics share tags as they surface in the active list. Just my opinion.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11478)

on January 31, 2012
at 11:14 PM

Tags are sometimes idiosyncratic, because they are originally written by the questioner. You can get around this by doing a keyword search, which is in the upper right hand corner of every page. Also, if you see unhelpful tagging, please edit the tags (if you have 500 reputation points, you have re-tagging privileges).

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on January 31, 2012
at 10:02 PM

@Renee, LOL! I finally lost enough weight that I can bear to put a mug shot out there. Ah, vanity!

3
9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on January 31, 2012
at 09:03 PM

I think there were two questions that got closed recently that are a perfect illustration of why I close. Both were from ex-veg*ns new to paleo. Question 1 was full of multiple loaded questions (implying the meat caused bowel cancer, questioning that paleolithic people actually ate very much meat, etc.) that had been answered before. It was like a ticking moderation timebomb. So I closed it. I closed it because it was loaded with multiple ideological questions that have already been discussed here. Question 2, was one woman's very specific question about trying to hack her transition to paleo. I left that open, despite the fact we've had similar, but less specific questions in the past.

3
Bdf98e5a57befa6f0877f978ba09871c

on January 31, 2012
at 08:59 PM

I think this is also why people are allowed to retag questions. I had searched for an answer on something, found nothing. Then I asked my question, and it was promptly closed. Had the original question shown up in my search, there would have been no duplicate.

That said, i think it is good to go back and look at old threads. People forget about things not on the first page of questions, but we sometimes need to revive a conversation because of inadequate answers, or in the best case, better information.

Ab19df3ededa28f7bf7daeba8435b205

(1471)

on February 01, 2012
at 01:23 AM

i do wish the search feature was better.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11478)

on February 01, 2012
at 02:38 AM

Try a keyword search instead of a tag search. See my previous comment on it on this thread.

Bdf98e5a57befa6f0877f978ba09871c

on February 01, 2012
at 01:32 AM

me too. I'm tempted to contribute to tagging posts, as it seems search looks only in tags. Not sure.

2
1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 31, 2012
at 08:19 PM

Replying to an old question brings it back onto the active question list and often results in some conversation. I know that is not exactly what you are looking for. Duplicate questions dilute the resource. However if you have a question you may need to rephrase it to get answers closer to what you are looking for.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11478)

on January 31, 2012
at 11:47 PM

@Christopher, you can more readily see the newest answers if you sort the thread using the "newest" tab instead of the default "votes" tab.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on January 31, 2012
at 09:03 PM

Well, also because of the voting thing, a new answer to an old question, no matter how useful, might not be seen by most people. When I see an interesting question at the top of the homepage, I first scan the date of the question, then then top-voted answers, and typically quit before getting anywhere near the bottom of the zero-vote answers. And I doubt I'm alone in that behavior. So in this way, I'd kind of like to see questions re-asked if sufficient time has passed to make it likely that new or better information could be provided. I also like when someone posts links to previously asked.

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!