Warning! Blatant self-promotion ahead!

I posted this answer: https://ell.stackexchange.com/a/225606/9936, and the question was since marked as a duplicate. My answer has been well received and I feel that it's better than the other answers on both questions because it explains how the grammar works instead of just saying what's right and what's wrong. Yes, I'm biased, I know!

Can I post the same answer on the original question, or is it better to leave it on just the duplicate, even though the "duplicate question" marker only goes from the second question to the first? Fewer people will see my answer because they'd have to notice the duplicate question in "Linked" at the side where it's not as obvious as "This question already has an answer here:" at the top of the question.

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As you can see in the screenshots, on my very big full size screen, no linked questions are visible until the user scrolls down.

  • You should not duplicate content. Duplicates are linked so that people who find the answers on one will be able to also find the answers on the other. Look at the “Linked” questions above the “related questions” in either the sidebar or near the bottom of the page and you should see the link appears for both questions.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Sep 25, 2019 at 18:35
  • @ColleenV I've seen the Linked questions. My concern is that the question marked as a duplicate very visibly tells users straight away that there is another question, but the only hint on the duplicate target is the much less visible Linked questions. It's not impossible to find, it's just much easier to go in one direction than the other, and there's no guarantee of higher quality answers on the original question. How can we get the highest quality answers in front of the most users?
    – CJ Dennis
    Commented Sep 26, 2019 at 0:28
  • How do you think users found your answer before the question was linked as a duplicate? The link only improves the chances that someone will find it.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Sep 26, 2019 at 1:30
  • @ColleenV I found it because it was a hot network question. It won't be forever.
    – CJ Dennis
    Commented Sep 26, 2019 at 7:10
  • The question you’re proposing to duplicate content on isn’t on the HNQ, so I’m not understanding your point.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Sep 26, 2019 at 14:32
  • @ColleenV Ah! Now I see your confusion! Traffic was directed to the duplicate because it was a HNQ. It was not yet marked as a duplicate. Now that it is marked as a duplicate it encourages users to go to the original question before the duplicate question starts. Linked questions are easily ignored.
    – CJ Dennis
    Commented Sep 26, 2019 at 15:35
  • I don’t see the problem. Depending on search terms people will find either one or the other of those questions and if the answers on one are insufficient, there’s a link to the other.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Sep 27, 2019 at 17:47

1 Answer 1


No, you may not post duplicate answers according to the FAQ Is it acceptable to add a duplicate answer to several questions?, regardless of your motivation for doing so.

The acceptableness of this behavior ranges from "highly frowned upon" to "completely unacceptable". (Note that it never reaches the "acceptable" end of that spectrum.)

The FAQ goes on to list more appropriate actions for different situations where you may have wanted to post a duplicate. This part seems sort of relevant:

Duplicate answers most often indicate that the questions are asking the same thing. If the questions could be considered duplicates of each other, only post the answer to the best one, which you think would make the better candidate for the other one to point to. Flag or vote to close the other one so that it can be directed to the better question which has your answer.

  • 1
    Which is good advice if you knew there was at duplicate at the time of answering.
    – CJ Dennis
    Commented Sep 28, 2019 at 14:16
  • And what if you didn’t ever know that other question existed? Linking duplicates only helps people find your answer.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Sep 29, 2019 at 11:51

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