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51

I know the stated goal of the site is to provide a knowledge base, and I know that every time I rant on about the importance of teaching I get told that isn't the main purpose of the site. Nevertheless I think teaching is important, and doing worked examples is an important part of teaching. I'm not saying I want the site to fill up with posts asking how to ...


24

See my answer here for the rationale behind this policy Note that this will require some community members to commit to curating the resource recommendations by flagging for post notice addition, flagging+commenting on bad answers, etc. This can't go through unless we get enough people who are willing to patrol for resource recommendation questions and ...


20

Check my work question should always be off-topic. Those that can be rephrased should be rephrased. "Am I right?", "Is this correct?" or something else is always only of use to people who did the exact same derivation, and this is definitely too localized. To answer the bullet points in order: The level of the question should be utterly irrelevant. I have ...


20

Recently I've noticed a few people posting questions in rapid succession, each with a screenshot of a problem. If you look at the questions as a whole, it's obvious they've split their entire problem set or take-home exam into tiny pieces and asked us how to do the whole thing. This sort of behavior, which is undesirable but not necessarily obvious to ...


19

To discourage rapid postings of the type alluded to in the question, methinks screenshots of text should be outright banned. I can understand a screenshot of a figure, but if it can be easily done with LaTeX/MathJax, there’s no place for a screenshot. If anything, the time and effort going to typesetting makes it easier to justify that the OP has done some ...


14

Unacknowledged or unmarked quotes are plagiarism, plain and simple, and they deserve the full weight of community displeasure to be heaved on them: comments, downvotes, and eventual deletion. On the other hand, if an answer consists completely of well-acknowledged quotations then it deserves to stay on the site - it's not doing anything against the rules, ...


13

Wrong answers and bad questions are supposed to be dealt with using downvotes. Antisocial behavior is AFAIK supposed to be dealt with by moderators using measures like warnings and suspensions. These measures aren't always effective, but from what I've seen, the cases where they don't work commonly seem to involve people who are persistent posters but don't ...


13

I can understand why you want this: without it there is a lack of transparency and you have to take the good intentions and allegedly judicious meditations of the moderators on trust. And while I could simply refer you to the team as our oversight that only pushes the problem back a level, which is exactly the whole "Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?" dilemma. ...


13

Questions about perpetual-motion machines should meet a stricter-than-usual bar in terms of clarity and prior research to get on HNQ. Questions about perpetual-motion seem to have a particularly easy time hitching a ride on the HNQ list (this is one recent example), and it's easy to see why: they are instantly appealing to a lot of people, they are ...


13

I don't think we need any additional policies about referring to or questioning about papers published through predatory journals. Assuming the paper is mainstream... Well, we don't really need to do anything. Maybe, in the case that the post is written by the author of the paper, we could provide a link indicating that journal is predatory, but nothing ...


12

So basically, you want everyone who makes a mistake and has to have their access blocked for a while to be publicly pilloried for the amusement of passers-by? That sounds like fun. But for folks you'd actually like to see return to the site in good standing, it's probably a bad idea.


12

What can we do about this? How can we prevent the physics community ressponse to certain questions being screwed up like this? How can we avoid that powerful people at superior positions in the overall SE network get a wrong picture about the needs of OUR community and in the worst case take wrong actions against users who do great contributions to physics ...


12

There's a subtlety to the guidelines for editing here that many people (even some aged, veteran users) don't quite pick up on... So I'll try a different approach here There's a famous interview with Richard Feynman, where he was asked the question, "how do two magnets attract or repel each other?" To which he responded, I can't explain that attraction in ...


12

Good idea to make this a question so I can post my comment there as an answer: yes, this is fine. Actually, in order to avoid arguments over whether it does constitute an answer or not, I'll say this: The fact that the content of an answer is taken from someone else's comment is not, itself, a problem. This means that you can post the content of someone ...


12

Thus, my question: do we, as a community, want to discourage gendered language? Or should we just leave it to the discretion of users what kind of language to use? As I understand it, this proposal is not suggesting using moderator action to enforce the use of ungendered language. Nevertheless I would like to clarify that we won't do that, not unless people ...


11

My take on this is two-fold: First, don't start edit wars. If you put something on a question, and somebody later removes it, don't just go back in and put it back again and leave comments about it. Take it to meta, take it to chat, and actually discuss it rather than take it out to 7 revisions. When people disagree, use the channels we have to resolve it ...


10

I won't address the legal issues (because I'm not qualified), but in general, it's not a violation of any SE policy to link to anything. However, in the interest of maintaining professionalism, I would suggest that if you want to identify a specific book, you should link to the Amazon product page or some similar canonical identifier, not to a site that ...


10

The main mechanism for the reversal of serial voting is automated, because the moderators have access only to summaries of inter-user voting, (not to detailed records) even when our tools alert us to the existence of unusual patterns in voting. Alleging that the moderators aren't doing their job on this is simply silly: it's mostly not our job because the ...


9

There are several misunderstandings in your question, I'd like to answer (without sarcasm) to it. Abuse of our Meta by people from other SE sites Abuse? The system explicitly gives me the right to respond there, so where is the abuse? I gained the reputation to have the 101 rep on other sites, I deserve the right to have and use it. Again, I see no abuse,...


9

The content of all Stack Exchange sites is licensed Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike. If the terms are met, then they are allowed to do this. If the terms are not met, the centralized place for reporting violations of the license is on the mother meta thread for such things. And I see that the first answer there is this very site.


9

Yeah, this looks terrible. Not only does it waste the preview, it gets in the way of the question, and can easily end up being longer than the question itself. Fortunately, we have a system for attaching permanent banners to posts that doesn't get in the way of viewing the question. I've added one for book recommendations based on your template; if you see ...


9

I'll offer up my other view on this since I am undecided in some respects. Checking of mathematical derivations only should always be off topic. We're not TA's here, we shouldn't need to hold office hours for people. Having said that, when people ask a question that really can be rephrased as "Did I include all of the relevant physics?" then I think it's ...


9

Resource recommendation questions should be on-topic, but community wiki (and with the same expectation for the content of the answers as currently set in the faq post). The faq post should be altered to reflect that both old and new resource-recommendation questions should be turned into community wiki posts, as indicated in the top-voted answer of "Good ...


9

I would say that moderators get it right most of the times. But sometimes they err, in which case I can think of four routes you can take: Vote to reopen. If the question is very clearly on-topic, it should get reopened rather fast. I agree with your point that it is much less likely to happen than it being closed by Reviewers, because there is an ...


9

Discussions on meta Stack Exchange sites are discussions, but they are still expected to have some structure. If you post an answer, then just as on the main site, it is expected to address the question itself, not another post. If your answer is not an answer, it may be deleted, as per site policy. It is also possible that a moderator with convert the ...


8

All of his posts are "jokes" aimed at intentionally misleading, asking nonsensical questions, or generally mocking physics in some way. [...] The important thing is that upon closer inspection, many of them say nothing or say the wrong thing seemingly intentionally. This is precisely what downvotes are to be used for. Note that the criterion for downvoting ...


8

See also: Why are "shopping list" questions bad?, http://blog.stackoverflow.com/2011/08/the-future-of-community-wiki/ TL;DR I do feel that our book/list policy can be revised. Not removed, but loosened up considerably. For book questions, this can be done by making sure that answers include a sketch of the book -- what prerequisites are assumed, ...


8

There are several competing desires for how to close (and possibly merge) duplicates (listed in my preferred order, but that shouldn't be taken to represent official policy): Priority to the best question. Priority to the oldest question. Priority to the most popular question (As indicated by views or by votes or by number of non-trivial answers.) Actual ...


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