Hot answers tagged

12

IsaacMoses wrote an answer to a question about non-orthodox positions which has more-or-less become Mi Yodeya canon. I would like to extrapolate his answer to what I believe to be its correct application to this question. The reason we generally limit questions and (in particular) answers of halakha to an Orthodox point of view is not because we consider ...


11

Elsewhere I wrote: If an answer does not bring a source but relies on logic or assumptions, then anyone can and should downvote if they, through their own logic or assumptions, think the answer is inaccurate, not useful etc. It is one anonymous internet user versus another, and at least one of them may be a dog. If the answer does bring a valid source, then ...


10

I leave comments that are undeveloped answers so others can build on them to make an answer if they want.


9

This answer post is here solely so people can up- or downvote the statement below. It's not clear to me that that statement is already site policy (though it may be); if not, votes on it may cause it to become site policy. If a question is about Judaism in general and does not mention or imply any interest specifically in non-Rabbinic Judaism, then it shall ...


9

Yes. This is a great thing to do. Please do this whenever you see a chance to do so. If you see a comment that's pointing towards​ an answer, and you are able to flesh it out into a helpful answer post, please do so. Providing inspiration and assistance to you writing such an answer is why such comments exist. If you've used all of the relevant information ...


9

Thank you for bringing this important concern to meta. I agree with this answer and want to add: I have seen dogma-driven, as opposed to quality-driven, voting severely damage another site. There are actually two ways this problem manifests; you've identified one of them: Downvoting a valid answer (sourced, sound argument, etc but just reaches a different ...


9

I don't think anyone would say that it's mandatory to include links (it can't be because providing sources in the first place is never mandatory – see here with comments). But I think that everyone would also agree that links improve the answer (and certainly don't detract). I think the primary value of links is that readers can see the original source ...


9

Regarding comments that point to a source that could provide an answer, the optimal outcome is that someone uses that source to write up a proper answer. One example of a community initiative that can result in many such upgrades is an Answerathon, as such comments often provide good opportunities to contestants to generate answers to unanswered questions by ...


8

See What is the official etiquette on answering a question twice? on MSE. The top answer there states: When you have two distinct answers. It's better to post two different answers than to put them both into one answer. [snip] If you put two very different answers in one, then one could be a great answer, and one could be a terrible way to do things, but ...


8

Thank you for asking this important question. There are several reasons we frown on link-only answers: Web pages change all the time. Today that link directly answers the question. Will it in six months? Sometimes links break, which is at least obvious, but sometimes content changes, and those changes may affect accuracy and/or applicability to the ...


8

I try to evaluate an answer against the question, not against other answers. If this were the only answer would I vote on it? If so, I should vote -- why is it the author's fault that, between his posting and my seeing it, someone else added another good answer?1 However, I don't ignore other answers entirely -- if a new answer covers the same ground as ...


8

Unless the question specifies a particular type of source that it's looking for, even answers that do no cite any source at all are "valid", information that comes from informal or mimetic sources is better than information with no cited source. Regardless of the type of source, the more information that the answerer can include about the source, to help ...


8

Yes, they're effectively the same. As I understand it, from experience and from reading some of the canonical Meta.SE posts, problems with link-only answers include: Instead of providing an answer, a link provides directions to a resource that could provide an answer, which is qualitatively less helpful to a person seeking an answer. No context is provided ...


8

Edits that go against the author's intent are bad whether the post is an hour old or a year old, so please don't do that. Here are some things you can do instead: Provide a better answer (if you can). This also bumps the question. Bring it up in chat. While most people don't use chat, many active users do and they might have ideas about how to address ...


8

A link is never required and always better. The harder a particular source would be to find without a link, the more value a link adds. See our FAQ post about citing external material: At a minimum, always provide a reference to the external material. If it's on a website, your reference will be much more helpful if it includes a link.


8

We definitely should not delete answers for being incorrect. One of the main advantages of Stack Exchange over other parts of the internet is that we don't censor. Anyone can advocate whatever view they want as long as they do so respectfully. If we delete answers for being incorrect it can very easily lead to the censorship of certain viewpoints. While it ...


7

I've just reviewed the two questions you link. Both of your answers say that "the" source is Christianity, yet four answers on the first question offer Jewish sources. It's not surprising to me that people would downvote an answer that says that you have to go to Christianity for a source; that appears to be incorrect. A suggestion that the rabbis who ...


7

In my opinion, whether the asker delineated parts to his question (1. Why is this done? 2. How long has it been done? ― Answer: So-and-so says it's done because of such-and-such.) or not (What's the custom? ― Answer: The Ashkenazic custom is such-and-such.) it's fine as an answer and needn't be a comment. And it should be worded so ...


7

There is a grace period after a question is put on hold during which an answer that was started before the question was put on hold can still be submitted. The rather-old MSE post I linked to says this grace period is around 4 hours, but my own observation has been that it's somewhere around 30-60 minutes nowadays. Also, apparently the mobile client (I don'...


7

The primary benefit of combining is readability. All of the extra borders, voting buttons, links, etc. adds a lot of bulk to the page, and in many cases (especially Parshanut questions) there can be a large number of possible answers. (Also you don't want to look like you're fishing for reputation points.) The primary benefit of splitting the answers is ...


7

It depends on the subject and relevant body of source material, but generally, something like "I've studied this subject extensively, including all of the relevant sections in the Talmud, etc., and have never come across such a thing." can be a valid answer. The more basis you include to back up your assertion, the stronger your answer is. For some examples ...


7

Questions must be judged for fitness to Mi Yodeya on their own merits, not on those of answers that have been posted to them. My standing proposal for how to evaluate the topicality of questions of this nature is given in my answer to The Parameters of "Jewish Life" Scope, which you linked here: I believe that the guiding principles (though not a ...


6

It doesn't seem quite right to me. If they vote to close, it's either because they consider it off topic, or unclear. If it's unclear, they shouldn't answer (or vice versa - if it's answerable, it's not unclear). If it's off topic, it doesn't seem right to answer. If someone wants to help despite being off topic, some at SE (specifically SO) would ...


6

No The standard link-only comment text states While this link may answer the question, it is better to include the essential parts of the answer here and provide the link for reference. Link-only answers can become invalid if the linked page changes. This applies just as much to MY questions/answers as external sites. Answers can get deleted and/or ...


6

Not only is it ok to answer your own question, but there's no need to wait at all. In fact, the interface even suggests answering immediately: If you have an answer, please share it. If you would like additional answers, feel free to say (in a comment or in your answer) that you're looking for improvements. Even if you don't say something like that, it's ...


6

I'd like to quote a general principle offered by a wise respondent to a previous Meta question: I think that by definition answering a question is supposed to be an investment of time/effort and one should always want their answers to be as valuable as can be. And my own Chat-commentary on that point: We're not here to try to win a game by following ...


6

In general, a good way to notify the mods that a mod-only action is needed is to raise a flag.


5

Answers that contain no information other than a reference and information that is not intelligible to people who can only read English is, as you suggest, effectively a link-only answer. It is therefore not an acceptable answer and should have one of the following things done to them: Fix, by adding a translation and/or summary of what the reference and ...


5

There are a few things we can do if we see these answers. Provide a translation. This is optimal, though as you say, often doesn't happen, because it's a lot of work. Provide a summary of the Hebrew. Also very good. And, if someone actually takes the time to read the whole thing before upvoting, they should have a good understanding and be able to do that. ...


5

From our Help Center's page on "How do I write a good answer?": Answer the question Read the question carefully. What, specifically, is the question asking for? Make sure your answer provides that – or a viable alternative. The answer can be “don’t do that”, but it should also include “try this instead”. Any answer that gets the asker going in the ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible