A specific user (I'll ping him so that he sees this question) is editing a lot of questions, only inserting comment replies (from the OP) into the question. This makes the questions more complete, but some of these questions are really old.

I have approved the edits up until now, but do these edits actually make sense with old questions?
I.e. should I keep approving or reject these edits?

  • Please note: the comments are always "from OPer". I "suggest" (oeps) you also add that to your question ... Maybe you also want to add that "after such suggested edits get approved, I also flag the relevant (integrated) comments as 'obsolete' ..."? Jan 27 '16 at 12:53
  • Done. I had hoped you did that flagging as well, yes ;-) Others would have to flag quickly after that though, otherwise these flags all add up in the mod queue.
    – user416
    Jan 27 '16 at 12:58
  • One thing to point out to any such editor: We're thankful for improvements of course, and "house cleaning" is an important task – but especially with "very old posts" one should not edit too many at once (as they get pushed on the front page as "recent activities").
    – Izzy Mod
    Jan 27 '16 at 13:25
  • About the flagging: I ran into the daily flagging limit (which I didn't know existed): one can only raise 20 flags a day ... did you know? Jan 27 '16 at 13:37

Quote from edit questions and answers:

When should I edit posts?

Any time you feel you can make the post better, and are inclined to do so. Editing is encouraged!

Some common reasons to edit are:

  • ...
  • to clarify the meaning of a post without changing it
  • to add related resources or hyperlinks
  • ...

Therefor I think all such edits are appropriate.

If such edits are not appropriate, then I suggest some kinds of extra rules get implemented that one needs "enough rep" (whatever the amount) before being allowed to suggest edits to posts that are older than X days.

Note that if the OPers would respect the rules that they should amend their own questions to address comments to their questions, then such edits would not be needed ...

PS: Note that I intentionally skip all CLOSED questions (to avoid those would bump up as active again after such edits get approved).

  • 1
    As I've pointed out in my comment on the question above: Good job, and important task! I didn't check how much you did – but just for the records, it should be noted to not edit too many "old posts" within a short time, as they'd unnecessarily flood the "recent activities" on the front page. Thanks a lot!
    – Izzy Mod
    Jan 27 '16 at 13:28
  • OK, thanks for the feedback ... I'll try to remember it and "be more patient" to ever receive the badge at softwarerecs.stackexchange.com/help/badges/74 ... Give it a though though: some of these "badges" just encourage these kinds of edits ... So if editing "old posts is not to be encouraged", then maybe these badges should be removed? Jan 27 '16 at 13:35
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    Having important information in comments makes questions less complete, and the site the useful. I would say that fixing that is more important that "flooding" the recent activities. I for one like to see new things in recent activity rather than coming back to the same questions I have seen a day before. So I would say keep on the great work :-) With 20 flags per day that will mean about 10 questions coming back, nothing to worry about. That's just my opinion.
    – Nicolas Raoul Mod
    Jan 27 '16 at 14:45
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    Well, it is encouraged, in appropriate portions. We don't want "old content" to get useless – but neither do we want our entire front page filled by just that, if you get the idea :)
    – Izzy Mod
    Jan 27 '16 at 14:45
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    @NicolasRaoul I remember getting the same reminder I just gave a few years ago in a similar situation (on a different SE site that is), which is why I've brought it up. IMHO it's OK if the majority of links on the front page are pointing to new stuff. Some users see it the way you do, others go to the other extreme – so we've got to find a good compromise :)
    – Izzy Mod
    Jan 27 '16 at 14:49
  • Merci (oeps: thank you) @NicolasRaoul (seems like we have similar opinions about such comments). Know however that in recent days I have more accepted edit suggestions (questions) then I was allowed to flag (for comment removal) afterwards. So unless the mods themselves have cleaned up the relevant comments now, I still have a "queue" of flags to do in the coming days (at a rate of 20 flags / day ...). Apart from that, refer to my prior comment (= the nr of edits to "old" posts should go down). Jan 27 '16 at 14:53
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    There is almost no flag queue, we process them promptly. I don't think any flag has ever stayed for more 24 hours.
    – Nicolas Raoul Mod
    Jan 27 '16 at 14:56
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    Flags are tasty, and these ones are especially easy to handle. I, personally, kind of like handling them. Don't worry too much about bumping old posts, we get enough organic activity that it won't matter too much. It's probably a good idea to prioritize new posts over old ones, but it's not something to worry about.
    – Undo
    Jan 27 '16 at 14:59
  • Hm, seems like "ALL" mods around here a kind of approve these kinds of recent edit suggestions I did, though at the same time I better try to better reduce the amount of suggestions for "old" questions. If my understanding is correct, then I recommend the mods to some day go check some of the rejected "reviews" I received (exceptionally) about those edits, and find a way to tell such reviewers they should "reconsider-their-reviews" ... Let me know if you want some samples of such rejected reviews (which I think were not correct). Jan 27 '16 at 15:14
  • After a night of sleep, I come to think that the posts that need comments cleaning the most are... old posts. In old posts, comments can be removed with less hesitation because the probability that any of the parties replies to a comment is very low.
    – Nicolas Raoul Mod
    Jan 28 '16 at 2:51
  • @NicolasRaoul : that could probably be another interesting cleanup operation! With probably also a lot of questions closed as "unclear what you are asking"". Jan 28 '16 at 6:06
  • I'm accepting this as the 'correct' answer. I also 'like' cleaning up. Updating the questions as Pierre does has more value here than on other SE sites IMO, because many of these questions can serve as future 'references'. I'll just have to remember to also flag obsolete comments on these edited questions, so that the automatic comment removal (IIRC after 3 obsolete flags) can kick in before these flags land in the mod queue. Although the mods here don't consider that an issue (yet), it seems ;-) On a site like SO there are more mixed feelings about this given the volume over there.
    – user416
    Jan 28 '16 at 10:56
  • "Dank je wel" Jan! Oeps ... Hier mag je geen NL spreken (= here you're not allowed to speak Dutch) ... So for those who didn't learn NL-on-their-mother's-knees: "Merci" Jan! ... Oeps, that's a-kind-of-Flemish (and French), so one more time: "Thank you" Jan! Jan 28 '16 at 11:14

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