Full disclosure: I have the currently top-ranked (4 UV) answer.

The OP asked for a single-word meaning "not up for discussion". I posted the first answer, and four others (2 nearly identical to each other) were posted after. All the answers are fairly synonymous.

What would be the proper protocol here? I could improve my answer to include the other words, but that feels petty. Should I do it anyway? And of course the OP could pick their preferred word, but since all the answers are valid, that seems both misleading accuracy-wise and unfair reputation-wise.

This linked question didn't show up in my initial research, I'm guessing due to my use of different phrasing. Should we encourage posting distinct answers separately? (Particularly for [single-word-requests]) As the top answer suggests, a collective answer with very little distinction between them, such as this answer, is acceptable but a single post with highly varied answers is not. However, I think my question here is distinct enough to not be a duplicate since we individually added to the laundry list of valid answers (barring an improved question).

  • Related, but opposite: english.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/5126/… .
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Nov 17, 2018 at 16:40
  • One of the reasons many answers popped up right away on the original question, which led to the reason for your meta question, is that the original question still needs some work. See my comment on the original question.
    – MetaEd
    Commented Nov 17, 2018 at 16:48
  • 3
    I don't get it. Why would you want to collect all the other (distinct) answers into a single answer? That goes against having votes say what people think is the best of them.
    – Mitch
    Commented Nov 17, 2018 at 17:49

2 Answers 2


Taking an idea from another answer to make a better answer would be good as Meta-Ed mentioned, but it should also be noted that we disallow exact duplicate answers. While an answer that compiles other answers would not be an exact duplicate, it would be very similar in principle if you have nothing to additional to contribute of your own beyond what was already written.

I also fail to see any good reason for just compiling the other answers. They are already compiled on the same webpage under the question, so it would not really serve any unique beneficial purpose. If somebody wants to see all of the suggestions, then they can just scroll further down the page in most cases. It takes up extra space for no extra benefit insofar as I can imagine.

Also, answers which suggest multiple unrelated suggestions kind of defeat the point of our democratic system of peer review. If you read the tour, you will note that it states.

up vote

Good answers are voted up and rise to the top.
The best answers show up first so that they are always easy to find.

Similarly, if there are any bad answers, then we are supposed to vote against them in part to achieve the opposite effect, and in part to serve as a warning that negatively rated answers are problematic.

These sorts of answers may be voted down the list despite having good information because it is lumped in with bad information, or bad information could be voted up it because it was lumped in with good information, and, unless our readership is telepathic, with the extra special ability to read the minds of people who may be thousands of miles away, sight unseen, we are left with no certain recourse to determine for what people voted.

Compiling the suggestions should probably only be done if you want to do it in a manner that helps to prove why your answer is right. Maybe one suggestion can serve to prove a point about your own, or maybe you want to disprove that the other suggestions are as applicable as your own to make your answer more definitive.

However, I would advise against compiling just for compilation's sake. As a matter of fact, even if you have multiple suggestions of your own, then it is probably just better to write multiple answers for sorting purposes. (Yes, I realize I have answers that have multiple suggestions: I was copying other people until I saw another meta question which raised that particular issue and really thought about it.)

  • 2
    +1. tl;dr - Each answer is supposed to be a single answer. Vote the other answers up/down to show agreement/disapproval instead of compiling them into a single answer.
    – Lawrence
    Commented Nov 18, 2018 at 10:44

If you decide to take an idea from another answer, that’s acceptable as long as you properly credit all work by others that you include in your post. There’s detailed information in the site help about how to give credit.

During the period of time when a question is actively being worked on, write the best answer you can and leave others to do the same.

Later on, at least on high value questions, the community will sometimes act as curators, editing and improving the question and answers. At the same time, we might delete answers which clearly add no value.

Here’s a great Q&A that gives several different points of view on curation of high-value questions:

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