Yesterday another user asked if it's appropriate to put a comma before an ampersand in a list, and the question was marked as a duplicate of comma-before-and questions.

I don't agree that this is a duplicate question. An ampersand is a typographic or display element and not a word, so it's normally handled differently in print--specifically, without a comma preceding it even if the style elsewhere is to use a serial comma. AP style mentions this, and I think other reputable guides do, too.

Is there a way to appeal the decision to mark the question as a duplicate?

  • 1
    Duplicate in this context means less 'This is the same as another question' than 'The answers to another question cover this; it is better to have all enquirers directed to one place'; see meta.english.stackexchange.com/q/381/8019. Dec 10, 2013 at 19:00
  • So the closed question is a borderline duplicate, which is better addressed with similar questions. That makes sense, but wouldn't the tag ensure that the question is grouped with similar ones? I guess what confuses me is that I don't understand where or how the person who asked the question should have asked it.
    – user53907
    Dec 10, 2013 at 21:00

1 Answer 1


Your question here is a good way to appeal.

As similar as the questions are, I think the best solution is to add an answer (or improve an existing answer) on the earlier question explaining the exception when "and" is spelled "&".

  • I think the option to answer was removed when the question was closed as a duplicate, and no answers were before that that I could edit. I did leave a comment questioning the closure yesterday, but it didn't get an answer, so I deleted the comment and asked here. I'm not sure what the next best step would be.
    – user53907
    Dec 10, 2013 at 16:15
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    When I say the earlier question, I don't mean the one that was closed as a duplicate. I mean the older one, that the duplicate question now points to.
    – MetaEd
    Dec 10, 2013 at 16:16
  • That makes sense, thanks.
    – user53907
    Dec 10, 2013 at 16:17

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