1. Asker asks a question
  2. Answerer writes a long and detailed answer
  3. Answerer realizes that their answer is not correct (for instance they misread a requirement, or the asker added a new requirement)

In that situation, what should the answerer do?


At https://softwarerecs.stackexchange.com/a/34767/140 the answerer chose to just add this header at the top of their answer:

Edit: After the edit of OP asking for (new requirement), this answer is no longer valid. But I'm leaving the answer here in case it's useful to other visitors.

Is it a good idea?

  • Thanks for bringing this up. I eventually wanted to ask the same. Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 17:13
  • 1
    Thanks for bringing this up. I was the answerer in the example used in OP. Now that I think about it, I agree with the points made. I've deleted my answer.
    – Fiksdal
    Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 17:35

1 Answer 1


Please delete the answer.

It is sad that the effort spent into writing this answer is wasted, but it would be even more sad to let this answer hide more on-topic answers.

If losing this answer would be too big a loss for mankind, write down the original question (or the question you thought it was) and look at it: If that makes a good SR question, post it as a new question and add your answer to it. If that does not make a good SR question (ex: too broad, or does not really fit in SR's peculiar format), then create a blog and post your content as an article on that blog.

Note: If a question is a week old and has an answer with 2 or more votes, the question should not be modified too much, if new requirements invalidate any quality answer then a new separate question should be created.

  • 2
    Good question, do you think we should account the time frame, like let's say there is a question that is 2 months old that has 4 high-quality answers, and then the OP adds one new requirement that invalidates all the high-quality answers, should all those be then deleted using this rule? Or should we have like a time frame setup where if a question is X days old, instead of rewriting the question, create a new one that still leaves the other answers valid?
    – Tom
    Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 1:55
  • 2
    @Tom: Good point, thanks! I added a note about that, how does it sound?
    – Nicolas Raoul Mod
    Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 2:53
  • Great point as the voting should matter too, I agree.
    – Tom
    Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 3:01
  • 1
    I'd disagree with your criteria - only 2608 / 9685 (~27%) of answers all-time have a score > 3. The criteria should be the quality of the answer, but if we must have a number it should be much more reserved; think any positive score and only a few days, max.
    – user46
    Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 4:12
  • @Undo: I reduced to 2 but I still thing that a tangible criteria is needed to prevent answerers from rage-quitting after having one of their answers removed. Feel free to propose a different answer, cheers :-)
    – Nicolas Raoul Mod
    Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 5:12

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