20

SE has a mechanism in place to ensure it meets its legal obligations with respect to copyright. Users† aren't expected or required to determine whether other users are infringing someone else's copyright, & in general we'll have neither the facts nor the legal knowledge to enable us to. Now, I'm all right with us dealing with flagrant cases in ...


20

Some code formatting changes can appear to be purely stylistic in nature, and reviewers may well reject them for this. Sometimes the improvement is obvious (for example if code hadn't been correctly put into a code block) and the edit is likely to go through, but changes in indentation generally look stylistic and we tend to leave purely stylistic decisions ...


20

This is a series of side-notes to @Glen_b's excellent answer. Editing is a public service. Even some small edits can just clean up a post and make it easier for everyone to read, which is a positive contribution. Often an edit can change a question that looks too messy to wade through to one that looks readable. Editing can and should help the OP, who should ...


14

[Just to make clear, though my answers should always be read this way: this is personal opinion] You don't need to have any intention of answering a question to edit it. the difficulties facing the initial user may not be as conspicuous because the editor may have inadvertently filled in some critical conceptual gaps in the OP. Where feasible, it's ...


13

I'd say No in broad terms, but as usual much depends on the details. Positively, substantial new information could help a thread considerably, but that should typically be added through comments or very possibly as part of an answer. But what's substantial? For example, if someone edited a literature reference to add detail or to add a URL, that's an ...


10

Based on the discussion in chat and here my understanding is: Pleas for help should be removed as part of a larger edit, just like "Thanks", and <poster's name/signature>. Smaller edits produce benefits (they make threads more readable for future readers, and set a better example of the site's standards and expectations for future posters) and costs (...


10

In general you should not fix a single letter typo; one exception would be if it's an important word in the title (since people search for those!). The fact that the system tries to prevent you from making very small edits is deliberate -- it tries to stop you because you probably shouldn't. The editing-privilege page says "Tiny, trivial edits are ...


9

Anyone can review, and approve or deny, edits to their own posts. That is the case whether the post at issue is a question or an answer. Moreover, their review is final: That is, if they are the first reviewer, there is no need for a second, and if they are the second reviewer, but their review disagrees with the first, their choice is used. When your ...


9

I agree with @NickCox that as a general policy answer edits should only be "minor" (copy editing), i.e. improve grammar, fix spelling and LaTeX mistakes, format the quotes and code blocks, insert full references and hyperlinks to papers, etc. Substantial (major) changes should not be made via edits; if you think that an answer is incorrect or not entirely ...


8

I agree with @amoeba: it's important that authors have the ability to update or improve their question as quickly as possible. Otherwise it may be closed as unclear, or answers that do get posted will fail to address the author's main concern. We have many ugly, hard-to-follow threads that are a nightmare for future readers, resulting from substantial ...


8

The help on editing lists some circumstances in which it's okay to edit posts (i.e. questions and answers). These include: To fix grammar and spelling mistakes To clarify the meaning of the post (without changing that meaning) The first suggests that typos should probably be fixed, and the second clarifies that we must be careful to preserve the intent. ...


7

In your user profile choose All actions, then choose Suggestions.


7

If you really can't see anything else that needs fixing, perhaps best to wait until you get 2000 reputation points & the privilege of making edits which don't need review, & can be of any length, rather than mess up the edit history with work-arounds. But if you look carefully, there's often something else. The idea behind the rule is to avoid the ...


6

I reject such edits. As @Scortchi notes, an initial edit of a closed question bumps it into the reopen queue. However, if the edit does not address the reason for closure, that thread should be rejected for reopening. At that point, the OP has lost their first, easiest opportunity for having their question reopened. (It is still possible for the thread ...


6

Darn copyright on research and educational publications! Darn it to heck! To the extent that we are not threatened by legal sanctions by specific links, CV's policy should prefer links that undermine copyright on scientific publications where possible: Copyright generally does not belong to the authors of peer-reviewed literature, but to rent-seeking ...


6

Universities spend billions each year to pay to access research papers (and that's mostly taxpayers' money). Paywalls slow down research. US Federal student loan debt is $1.5 trillion, and textbooks that cost over 100 USD don't help. I don't think we should be so proactive to defend the academic publishing industry by trying to guess if a PDF cannot be ...


5

Edits which change the technical content of someone else's question should be avoided, even if a part of the subject is not correct. This is because the edit could be the question's answer (or part of it). One thing to do in this situation is to leave a comment to the OP pointing out what should be edited/clarified. See the following Meta Stack Exchange ...


5

I usually type a custom message for the editor telling them to leave a comment for the OP. Here is some example text: It is best not to add the tag, but to ask the OP to do it so that they will be familiar w/ our policies.


4

(Take this as personal opinion speaking as an ordinary user) If it's an edit you'd accept if it was from a different user - an improvement without changing the intent too much - you could accept it whether or not you were sure it was the original poster. However, if it actually is the original poster suggesting an edit from a second account, I regard the ...


4

Please don't do minor changes, unless you can combine them with larger changes in the same post. Remember that editing a question bumps it to the top of the "active questions" list. Add this to people having to sign off on your edits until you reach the 2k rep threshold, and at some point changing "their" to "there" actually turns from signal into noise.


1

The site should not be a party to illegally hosting copyrighted content. You should not allow such an edit. When you see a post that does contain pirated content, you should edit it out (or flag it if it is in a comment or otherwise uneditable for you).


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