AskLO: guidelines for high-karma users

Many newbies seem to stutter when they first ask a question here: their question is duplicated.

High-karma contributors have enough privileges to close or delete the question. But every “warden” has his own preference about which question to keep.

My personal habit is to consider the latest one may have been edited and the oldest one is therefore to be put aside.

Unfortunately, we may be two high-karma contributors detecting simultaneously the duplication. When this happens with opposite habits, the net result may simply be deletion of both instances. This is what happened a few minutes ago.

My recommendation is then:

  • comment both instances with a cross-link making clear which are the duplicates

  • when this is done and not before, close the oldest question with Duplicate question reason

    This is the only way to handle a contradictory personal procedure. Don’t use delete before you know for sure somebody else did not choose to discard the occurrence you thought was left.

  • check your “left-alive” question has not been closed/deleted by someone else

  • wait for OP feedback before deleting the extraneous occurrence

    Consider a no-response delay of at least 48 hours is safe before taking drastic measures like deletion.

The case is represented by questions 256719 and 256720 of user @jdgppa

The StackExchange site has safeguards to help prevent these problems, as explained at How should duplicate questions be handled? - Meta Stack Exchange. But for AskLO, it sounds like your recommendation is all that can be done.

In most cases, I would close the newer question as duplicate, because the older question wasn’t duplicate when it was asked. However, in cases you described where the question is repeated by the same user shortly after, perhaps closing the older one is better.

And worse! Someone deleted the occurrence I had reopened despite the fact that OP provided additional information in comments to help and resolve his/her question. This is reported by my notification log but I can’t access the now-deleted question.

Newcomers often complain about site ergonomy and contributors contempt. Such a wild deletion will not cure the site reputation.

@jdgppa: are you the one who deleted the last occurrence of your question?

This messes up my notification indicator and prevents me from cleaning my log. If you gave up any hope of getting an answer, please tell me so with a comment below so that I can clean my account.