22 votes
Accepted

What is the policy for linking? E.g.: Why should we link to abstract pages rather than pdf files? How do we cite arXiv preprints?

There are multiple reasons why it's better to link to abstract pages rather than directly to the PDF versions: Mobile users and users with slow internet connection prefer an abstract page over a PDF ...
21 votes

Should a rude comment be deleted if the addressed user doesn't mind?

Absolutely My take on the Code of Conduct (AKA the Be Nice policy) is that it is not just a matter of what the two people directly involved in the conversation think about the language used. It also ...
JMac's user avatar
  • 15.2k
21 votes
Accepted

Can I correct grammar in questions/answers even if the message is clear?

Even if it is by a small amount, corrections like these still improve the clarity of the post. However, I would encourage you to follow the advice of the help page, and look to see if there are any ...
Chris's user avatar
  • 17.2k
17 votes
Accepted

Should comments trying to answer a question be deleted?

One problem with answer-comments you seem to not have considered is that they can be wrong. Answers can be downvoted, but comments can only be upvoted, so there is no proper mechanism to show that an ...
ACuriousMind's user avatar
  • 124k
16 votes
Accepted

Cases in which self-edits are an unethical mean to generate attention

There is nothing unethical about a minor edit, if it improves the post. The practice of bumping posts by edits is only problematic if the edits don't actually improve the post (e.g. only add ...
ACuriousMind's user avatar
  • 124k
15 votes
Accepted

Is it okay to edit your answer to make it better after seeing some point that is addressed in another answer or is this bad etiquette/stealing?

You can reference material from other answers, even answers on the same page that were submitted after your answer, but you do need to give proper attribution. Eg, As [userX mentions](...
PM 2Ring's user avatar
  • 11.3k
14 votes

Is it okay to edit a question (on the main site) to downvote it after you initially upvoted it?

Please use edits to substantially improve the posts they are attached to. Please do not use trivial edits as backdoors to enable site features that are inaccessible to you for some reason.
rob's user avatar
  • 88.6k
14 votes
Accepted

What to do with a horrible question haunting my question record?

Just continue to participate in the site in a constructive way, and don't worry about one deleted question. If your early participation includes lots of downvoted/closed/deleted questions, you may ...
rob's user avatar
  • 88.6k
13 votes

Can I correct grammar in questions/answers even if the message is clear?

Yes, please do. Such changes make the site easier to use for all readers.
rob's user avatar
  • 88.6k
13 votes
Accepted

Languages of references

Yes, while the language of the main body of a SE post should be in English, non-English references are acceptable for various reasons: A non-English reference is better than no reference. It is ...
Qmechanic's user avatar
  • 200k
11 votes

Why isn't it the norm to put a "TL;DR" one-line answer at the top of an answer?

It's really just personal preference in how one chooses to construct the answer. Sometimes people will put a "TL;DR" at the top, or the bottom, to summarize things which is kind of what you'...
tpg2114's user avatar
  • 16.5k
11 votes

When I post a self-answer, is it expected that in the question I should pretend I don't know the answer?

I was one of the close voters, but I voted to close as engineering not as unclear. If you just read the question then I think it is unclear, so I can see why people have voted that way. When I post a ...
John Rennie's user avatar
10 votes

Should a rude comment be deleted if the addressed user doesn't mind?

I saw that comment. Even if it didn't bother you, we don't want stuff like that hanging around. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broken_windows_theory
PM 2Ring's user avatar
  • 11.3k
10 votes

Language that can be perceived as sexist

Any time one finds language that could be considered unwelcoming, I think the right course of action is to edit the post to change or remove it. The usual editing guidelines still apply, so: Make ...
tpg2114's user avatar
  • 16.5k
9 votes
Accepted

Should I not edit my old questions on a spree?

Yes, you should avoid flooding the front page. I recommend doing them in small batches of say 2 or 3 posts at a time.
PM 2Ring's user avatar
  • 11.3k
9 votes
Accepted

Is mass editing of old posts encouraged?

Is making a large number of edits to old questions in a short time frame encouraged, NO. Editing old questions is indeed encouraged, in the understanding that if the thread was inactive and editing ...
Emilio Pisanty's user avatar
9 votes

Language that can be perceived as sexist

@tpg2114's answer is the right one from a policy standpoint, but it's worth making an extended comment to observe that "guys," specifically, occupies a strange place at the intersection of ...
rob's user avatar
  • 88.6k
9 votes
Accepted

Should I refrain from marking a question as a duplicate of my question or of a question that I answered?

Here's what I do. I try to be "objective" as in – would I vote to close if the answer was by someone else? but a little bit more critical with my own stuff. So, If the new question is very ...
AccidentalFourierTransform's user avatar
9 votes

When I post a self-answer, is it expected that in the question I should pretend I don't know the answer?

Due to the nature of Stack Exchange as a Q&A site, there should at least be an explicit question to be answered. The most common trap of posting a question for self-answering is that the question ...
Andrew T.'s user avatar
  • 123
9 votes

Preventing acts of spam

That's what flags are for! See the help center for more details.
ACuriousMind's user avatar
  • 124k
8 votes
Accepted

Question unilaterally closed by a moderator without any chance of editing

You're asking for a list of theories, which is a question without the potential of having a "correct" answer and is usually seen as too broad around here. See e.g. Good list, bad list and its linked ...
ACuriousMind's user avatar
  • 124k
8 votes

Should we flag all comments that are no longer needed?

Should we flag all comments that are no longer needed? Yes. Comments are intended to ask for clarification and provide feedback to questions and answers; they are not intended to help anyone keep ...
Emilio Pisanty's user avatar
8 votes
Accepted

Acceptability of soliciting comments from participants familiar with a major but untagged theory in PSE

Stack Exchange isn't a social network, and tools to contact specific users have been intentionally left limited. Write interesting questions and answers, and active users who share your interests will ...
rob's user avatar
  • 88.6k
8 votes

Should I refrain from marking a question as a duplicate of my question or of a question that I answered?

I think you're over-stressing about this. Closing a question requires a consensus of five different users (potentially down to three at some point in the future) that the question should be closed. It ...
Emilio Pisanty's user avatar
8 votes

Once a question has retained one net upvote, is it undesirable for each answerer to upvote it?

You should up vote any question you think deserves an up vote. Usually this is for reasons such as it fits well on the site, it is clear, etc. I don't think there needs to be anything beyond this. We ...
BioPhysicist's user avatar
7 votes

Cases in which self-edits are an unethical mean to generate attention

I'm a chronic self-editor. Sometimes I'll make three or four edits to a post in a space of a week or two. The sole reason is to improve the post. I don't always get it as good as it could be first ...
Philip Wood's user avatar
  • 35.3k
7 votes

Can we do better at reducing bike-shedding?

I don't think there is much you can do beyond what you have discussed and what is already in place. You just have to trust the users looking at the question to be responsible to look for duplicates ...
BioPhysicist's user avatar
7 votes
Accepted

Should I prefer the most up-voted answer or the accepted answer?

I would personally suggest using the most upvoted answer, when compared to a negatively scored accepted answer. That is because the "Accepted Answer" only reflects what the person asking the question ...
JMac's user avatar
  • 15.2k
7 votes

Cascade of mostly trivial edits by a user

I also assume that member decided to go on an edit spree of old high scoring posts to earn a few points. When I noticed the front page getting flooded, I sent them this comment, which I also posted in ...
PM 2Ring's user avatar
  • 11.3k
7 votes
Accepted

Straight $\mathrm{d}$ or italic $d$ for differentials?

David's answer is mostly OK, but his proposal includes several parts which are not OK. Specifically: When editing someone else's post: If they use plain ...
Emilio Pisanty's user avatar

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