I just edited this question as suggested by David Zaslavsky and Qmechanic to remove the topic of information since the consensus was it is better to ask it in a different post. Removing the information stuff would the presently closed question make appropriate for physics SE and it should be reopened after the edit as David Zaslavsky suggested. After the question is reopened, I wanted to put my answering comments into a propper answer and notice mods to remove the no longer needed, at the moment a bit cluttering, comments.

But EnergyNumbers prohibited this procedure on which I agreed with David Zaslavsky, Qmechanic, and the OP himself by wrongly rejecting my edits, probably because he did not read the comments below the question, wherein the OP agrees with the question being edited in this way. Since he was never completely sure about the importance of the term "information" in this context, he even said that he wants it to leave for someone else to make these edits.

So can my edits still be approved by a more reasonable reviewer, will I have to repeat them, or is this case completely lost now because EnergyNumbers has prohibited the agreed on procedure ?

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    $\begingroup$ @EnergyNumbers Could you please carefully read the comments below a question before rejecting a by mods and high rep users suggested edti ?! What you have done is plane wrong! And it is indeed harmful since the question needs this edit to be reopened ... Thanks $\endgroup$ – Dilaton Oct 14 '12 at 12:48
  • $\begingroup$ Do you really have to complain about it here though? EnergyNumbers suggestion to just make a new question seems reasonable to me. $\endgroup$ – user2963 Oct 14 '12 at 18:41
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    $\begingroup$ @zephyr stealing the question and ask it as my own would be really bad I think ... $\endgroup$ – Dilaton Oct 14 '12 at 19:08
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    $\begingroup$ As a recommendation to others, I think it's a good idea to add a "See the comments" to the edit summary, even though it has not worked for me sometimes. $\endgroup$ – Abhimanyu Pallavi Sudhir Sep 25 '13 at 12:36

On its own merits, i.e. without taking into consideration the comments on the question, that would have been an inappropriate edit. So we can't really blame EnergyNumbers for rejecting it - it's certainly not an abuse of the power to review edits.

That being said, it is a good idea to look at the comments on a question before deciding to reject an edit. When one does take the comments into account... in this case it could go either way. One could definitely argue that it should be the OP's prerogative whether to edit the question. But one could also argue that the OP can just revert any edit he/she doesn't like. Personally, in light of the comment discussion, I suppose I would have approved that edit, but it's not like it would be a great question either way so I don't feel we have suffered too much of a loss by not having the question edited and reopened.

Of course the OP can always make that edit and then the question would presumably be reopened.

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  • $\begingroup$ So if I random people are allowed to step in to prohibit what is suggested by high rep users and mods this is too bad. And I somehow disagree that question asking for books about minor subjects can not be useful, I was happy being allowed to ask about an introduction to twistors for example and I got a great answer. I've learned my lesson and I'll certainly never ever again try to edit anything apart from my own stuff and save my time for doing something useful :-(. I feel really pissed off by what happened! But thanks for this answer David $\endgroup$ – Dilaton Oct 14 '12 at 17:29
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    $\begingroup$ Remember that once you get enough reputation, the system does allow you to make edits without requiring approval. The assumption is that with 2000(?) rep you have enough experience with the site to know what makes a good edit and what doesn't. Of course, the distinction isn't that sharp in practice. Just because one has high rep (or is a moderator) doesn't mean one is automatically right in any dispute with a lower-rep user. $\endgroup$ – David Z Oct 14 '12 at 19:43
  • $\begingroup$ By the way, I would really like to see book recommendation information start to go in the tag wikis. $\endgroup$ – David Z Oct 14 '12 at 19:44
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks David for these explanations, so I'll delay further editing stuff that is not my own to the point I'm at 2000. The feature to only suggest edits is pointless as I have learned today :-/... $\endgroup$ – Dilaton Oct 14 '12 at 20:33
  • $\begingroup$ No, it's really not pointless. We get a lot of useful edits from people with less than 2000 rep (or however many it really is, I'm not sure about 2000). Of course if you don't want to edit anything, that's your call. $\endgroup$ – David Z Oct 14 '12 at 20:46
  • $\begingroup$ I'm now too worried about random people not carefully enough reviewing my edits (in the context consisting of existing comments, answers, for example) and therefore rejecting them. Up to now I only tried to do helpful things (about 5 times so far) to help clarify what the OP wants to say, language, stressing the physics context, etc ... I would never have done such a thing that changes the topic of a question as today, if it had not been suggested in the comments by people I trust. $\endgroup$ – Dilaton Oct 14 '12 at 21:34
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    $\begingroup$ Yeah, the fact that the OP suggested that someone else make that in the comments makes this okay. Otherwise it wouldn't be. So when making an edit that ordinarily wouldn't be appropriate, I suppose you're taking a risk that the reviewer won't look at the comments and will reject the edit. That's just kind of the way the system works. I don't think you get penalized for rejected edits, though, so it shouldn't be a big deal. $\endgroup$ – David Z Oct 14 '12 at 21:38
  • $\begingroup$ Yeah just one rejected edit is probably not enough to ban me from doing further ones and it obviously does not take any rep etc, it just makes me feel a bit ... pulled on my leg. Aah, now I see that the question in question is open again :-) $\endgroup$ – Dilaton Oct 14 '12 at 21:46
  • $\begingroup$ @Dilaton I generally try to review and approve edits made by low rep users. That said, I limit my own edits and approvals to things that don't change the core content (formatting, images, equations, ...). Maybe I just never acclimated to the idea of the "commons" on Stack Exchange, but it just seems wrong to change what someone else wrote under their user name, even if it would improve it. $\endgroup$ – Alan Rominger Oct 21 '12 at 3:33
  • $\begingroup$ @AlanSE sounds like you have the right idea about what sorts of edits to make $\endgroup$ – David Z Oct 21 '12 at 4:04
  • $\begingroup$ @AlanSE yeah I see what you mean. I always had the wrong idea that trying to help with language issues, typos, enhance what the OP wants to say by correcting physics terminology, adding physics context to make it on topic, catching gross physics errors such as wrong numbers of dimensions mentioned for example, etc (but not things that change the purpose of the question of course) would be a good thing because it could help in affording the question a better reception on Physics SE. I mean it can spare the OP from seing his question unjustly downvoted, closed, and finally deleted, etc ... $\endgroup$ – Dilaton Oct 21 '12 at 10:03
  • $\begingroup$ I'd rather like it to see my questions edited to make them better and on topic, than having them downvoted, closed, not answered, or even deleted. Personally, I always try to learn from the edits other people have done to improve my questions. But that is just how I feel about it and I'll leave stuff of other people alone, I have not suggested many edits anyway so far ... :-) $\endgroup$ – Dilaton Oct 21 '12 at 10:09
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    $\begingroup$ @Dilaton (2 comments up) helping with language issues and typos is accepted and encouraged. Correcting physics terminology or errors that don't change the purpose of the question, I would handle by leaving a comment but I suppose you could make those edits. Adding physics context to make a question on topic is perhaps not appropriate - or at least not really recommended, without the OP's approval. $\endgroup$ – David Z Oct 21 '12 at 10:25

We don't need to re-open all closed questions. Often, closed questions can just stay closed.

If you want to ask a question just about emergent phenomena, there's absolutely nothing stopping you.

The OP asked about book recommendations for information and emergent phenomena. There is no quota on the number of questions that can be asked, so I rejected your edit, because there was no good reason for you to hijack someone else's question to turn it into a different question, as I explained in the rejection note.

Furthermore, open-ended book questions are a pretty poor fit to a Q&A site that specialises in finding single, objective answers.

Chat could be a good place for these sorts of questions about book recommendations. It's also the right place for the extended discussion that clutters up this question, and others. And it would be the right place if you want to discuss this answer. Or indeed anything else. Q&A is not the place for discussion, chat is. Main Q&A and meta Q&A are for questions and answers. Chat is for chat & discussion.

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    $\begingroup$ You misunderstand the purpose of closing questions, it is to make them better by editing such that they can be reopened if possible. From your answer I see that you have STILL not read what @DavidZ, Qmechanic, and the OP himself said in the comments. I did not at all hijack the question, but I made the by Qmechanic and David Zaslavsky suggested edits. Again, the OP agreed on this and he prefered somebody else to do it. $\endgroup$ – Dilaton Oct 14 '12 at 15:38
  • $\begingroup$ Spot on. People need to be sensitive to the ownership of questions which means correcting basic spelling and grammar is fine. $\endgroup$ – Larry Harson Oct 15 '12 at 22:35

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