Questions tagged [answers]

This tag is for questions about answers: how to answer, whether specific answers are appropriate, and so forth.

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Answering old questions

Is it a good practice to answer old unanswered questions? I've seen some old questions with no answers and am assuming it is fine to answer them. Also, is it bad to do so a lot?
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  • 5,536
2 votes
1 answer
51 views

If a person's score is low for a certain tag but has a high answer count, is their English "bad"?

If someone has a high answer count but low score for a lot of tags, does that necessarily mean they are "slightly worse than others at English"? (Not meant to offend anyone.) Especially for ...
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  • 5,536
2 votes
3 answers
60 views

Is it "rude" to ask a question and answer it instantly?

Another site, Code Golf Stack Exchange, says it's frowned upon to post a question and then your answer, and they said it's best to post it after a few days. Does this site have the same "rule&...
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  • 5,536
1 vote
1 answer
47 views

Should I delete my answers?

Should I delete my answers if they have a score of 0 and are not accepted? As I feel that just clutter the page a little and they aren't helping anyone.
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  • 5,536
3 votes
0 answers
51 views

Edits to my answers sometimes generate multiple answers rather than applying the edits

In this question, I answered it, then edited my answer a few times in rapid succession. Each time I used the "edit" link. Now I notice that there are two separate answers, one being an ...
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  • 13.8k
-1 votes
1 answer
42 views

Why can't we accept our own answers within 2 days?

I self-answered my question How to make this hypothesis in a negative form? Now I want to accept it, but it says that I should wait for 2 more days before I can. Why can't I just accept my answer on ...
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6 votes
1 answer
188 views

Why was my answer on the "caps in soccer context" question removed?

From the comments beneath the answer, there is significant disagreement that it is in fact NAA: The NAA review was completed by a moderator. Another moderator chose to delete. Please explain why it ...
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  • 792
3 votes
4 answers
328 views

Let's use plain language (this time for real)

If you do not wish to read the entire document, please consider reading only the sentences in boldface. Introduction In an earlier post, ELL members discussed the value of writing answers in simpler ...
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  • 1,701
3 votes
0 answers
86 views

How can I improve my downvoted answers?

I asked a question here in Meta. I wanted to know if I could offer a bounty and ask ELL users to help me improve my downvoted answers or understand why they are wrong. That probably wasn't a good idea ...
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  • 9,896
1 vote
1 answer
83 views

Answer deleted?

I posted a short -- but not too short -- answer to Narrow streets behind houses but it almost instantly disappeared. Can you tell me why?
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  • 574
1 vote
1 answer
44 views

Can I post the same answer on a duplicate question?

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 ...
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  • 3,962
0 votes
2 answers
96 views

Cite your sources!

I've noticed something recently on this site. It's a weird thing, but it appears to be becoming common. Answers are seen as only being reliable if they have a source. This isn't the case where ...
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  • 801
3 votes
0 answers
111 views

ELL's Greatest Hits Page

I came across the Stack Exchange's Greatest Hits blog post on EL&U's meta, and found that ELL has a "greatest hits" page. This page lists the questions that have received a lot of ...
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  • 11.6k
1 vote
0 answers
74 views

How to respond to users who answer questions in comments? [duplicate]

RE: Cobwebbed - The fox in the Attic (comment by CowperKettle) and "Get a free notebook WORTH $2." Where is "IS"? (comment by CowperKettle) Note that I have asked this same ...
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  • 3,203
3 votes
2 answers
85 views

How to improve answers which only cover part of a topic

I want to get involved more in closing the unanswered questions. Since I do not have many permissions as a newcomer, I encounter some trouble. If there is an answer which covers only a part of the ...
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  • 8,924
16 votes
2 answers
301 views

So many answers in comments

I can see previous meta discussions on what should be a comment and what should be an answer, but what I'm wondering is, why are so many users posting answers, sometimes quite in-depth (if compact) ...
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  • 22.3k
3 votes
2 answers
97 views

Should a refutation to an answer be added to the question?

Can "strong" be used as a noun? In this question there is a situation that the word "strong" seems to be ungrammatical or even nonsense. But because the source is a clip, not a text, therefore some ...
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  • 2,410
2 votes
1 answer
53 views

How are answers with no votes sorted?

When I was viewing a question: How can I introduce (or name) a person my answer was above the other answer even though they both have 0 votes. I sorted it by votes. My answer is above the other ...
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0 votes
0 answers
107 views

Off topic comments growing on my answer

I've answered a question about plural "staff" which has attracted comments solely about plural "water". None has mentioned "staff" (the topic of the OP's question) or has suggested improvements. I'm ...
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  • 3,962
5 votes
2 answers
125 views

If there is more than one right answer can I summarize the answers?

If there is more than one right answer to a question can I accept one and summarize the answers under the question description with an edit note? For example, a previous question I asked: What is the ...
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17 votes
2 answers
388 views

Lesser of evils on ELL: comment vs. LQ answer

There is endless Q&A here and on SE Meta on comments vs. answers. Some things are clearly comments (e.g., requests for clarification, critique of a post). We have guidance on what constitutes a ...
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  • 5,451
3 votes
1 answer
66 views

Are there penalties at Stack Exchange for copying answers?

Before Stack Exchange, I participated in a similar site. That site had a requirement: all answers must be different from each other, and users cannot copy content from anywhere including Internet. I ...
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  • 1,722
0 votes
1 answer
45 views

Is it possible to edit questions that have answers?

I am new to this site. Is it possible here to edit questions which already have answers?
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  • 1,722
12 votes
1 answer
134 views

Guide to formatting ELL answers -- best practices?

Is there a place on ELL or ELL-Meta that conveys best practices on formatting answers, specifically in the context of conveying English language information? For example: presenting language examples ...
0 votes
1 answer
110 views

Is wiktionary a reasonable source to back up answers?

Just stumbled upon a question that was looking for a specific word. The one I had in mind was not there, so I thought I add it as an answer. As all other answers were backed up by links to ...
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9 votes
1 answer
204 views

What is the recommended action when the top-voted answer is incorrect significantly?

In this question (Is this rule "If" specific?), the top-voted answer has several up-votes and only a few down votes, but the entire second half is incorrect (plus one or two other more minor ...
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  • 4,425
-1 votes
1 answer
142 views

Proposal: Encourage new users to accept the correct answer

Scrolling down the ell feed, one can see that the majority of questions do not have accepted answers. StackExchange as a website has a strong emphasis on accepting a useful and/or correct answer and I ...
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1 vote
0 answers
90 views

I am a native speaker but have not learned grammar well, can I answer questions without grammar specifecs? [duplicate]

I am a native English native, but I don't know technical grammar answers. and I often answer questions knowing they are correct because I've listened to very good English all my life, but not-Knowing ...
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13 votes
3 answers
420 views

Stop answering close-worthy questions!

Call to stop answering off-topic questions seems not to have reached the goals it aimed to achieve. Out of the most recent 100 questions that were closed for any other reason than "duplicate", 76 ...
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  • 7,357
16 votes
2 answers
308 views

How useful are "Here, say this instead" answers, when the OP isn't asking for them?

Imagine three scenarios in Q/A: Q1: How can I say that "foo bars the baz"? A1: Just say "the foo bars" instead. Q2: Is "foo bars the baz" grammatically correct? A2: Just say "the foo bars" ...
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  • 7,357
23 votes
6 answers
351 views

How can a native English speaker with no experience teaching or learning English help, if at all?

I want to answer questions and I know English pretty well. However I don't have experience learning, or teaching, English. Most of my thought process is "that sounds wrong". People say words like ...
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9 votes
3 answers
226 views

Am I right? No, you're wrong!

The problem: I've recently seen questions in this form: Some title that might need polishing < a lot of background that usually doesn't add to the question >< a question that the OP ...
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  • 7,357
5 votes
4 answers
162 views

Answering: correctness vs. practicality

I am a native AmE speaker, and have been wondering if my answers are on-topic here. This thread brought up a good point, but didn't quite address my question. I am wondering if it is appropriate to ...
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  • 713
6 votes
4 answers
230 views

Do answers need to be in English?

I'm pretty sure answers need to be in English, and I was going to recommend an answer for deletion that is mixed English and something else, but I can't actually find a meta question or help center ...
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  • 3,256
7 votes
3 answers
280 views

Are answers which consist only of block quotes acceptable

This is related to this question on ELL meta about EL&U quoting. This ELL question has an answer consisting only of a quote from quora. Is this appropriate? I edited it to make it clear that it ...
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  • 8,124
66 votes
1 answer
1k views

DO NOT FEED THE BEARS

A question was just asked on ELL, and it needs a lot of work. Here's a screen shot. There are two problems with this question: first, the way the initial question was asked; second, the way a follow-...
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  • 108k
33 votes
6 answers
1k views

Submitting Answers that merely answer the question

Lately I've noticed quite a few answers that provide an answer to the O.P.'s question, but provide no supporting information. Sometimes, comments are left, asking for more information; other times, ...
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  • 108k
5 votes
2 answers
95 views

Do we entertain partial answers?

I am new in ELL, i have read various question where user ask meaning of more than one word or phrase. Sometimes one part of the question is easy to answer, but the second is not. So do we accept ...
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6 votes
1 answer
152 views

What should we do when a user asks about nonsensical English?

Today, someone asked what this sentence means: This first choice of yours is no second best of all. Without additional context, I think the answer is "nothing". And we were informed that there ...
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16 votes
4 answers
461 views

Commenting vs. Answering

I'm new to StackExchange, and trying to get a good feel for the difference between commenting and answering, but there are a few points still confusing me and I'd appreciate feedback from the ...
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  • 1,153
3 votes
1 answer
295 views

How should I write a placeholder in a phrase I show?

Suppose I want to show how the verb learn is used, and I want to show that it is used as: Learn [something] Learn from [something/somebody] Learning [something] from doing [something] What I wrote ...
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  • 20.3k
6 votes
1 answer
62 views

Deleted comment

I normally wouldn't worry about a deleted comment, but I got a reply to my comment on this question that seems to suggest I should post it as an answer instead (the only reason I didn't in the first ...
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  • 1,668
13 votes
5 answers
320 views

Lack of Accepted Answers

This is my first time participating in a public beta, so I apologize if this question has an obvious answer or if the behavior I mention is the norm. What I seem to be noticing, as I page through our ...
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  • 14.4k
-10 votes
4 answers
248 views

Should we use only the best ten hundred words in our answers?

For the best learning of our friends in this place, should we attempt to write all or our answers in up goer five words? This would help people who do not have a lot of words that they know ...
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10 votes
2 answers
235 views

Are answers that merely quote an existing answer on EL&U acceptable?

If somebody asks a question that is similar to a question asked on EL&U, for which the same answer applies to both the questions, is it acceptable to quote the EL&U answer, and use only that ...
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  • 20.3k
13 votes
1 answer
127 views

What is the preferred way to answer a question about the pronunciation of a word?

Suppose that somebody who is a native speaker of a language where the h is always silent asks a question about the pronunciation of house, explaining that her/his problem is the pronunciation of ho. ...
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  • 20.3k