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6
votes

The comments column at the bottom of each post should be used as a quick remark facility and not used to provide answers to a thread. If you have something significant to say, please do so as an "Answer this Question".

2927 views
updated AGO 11, 2009
edited by Eddy
posted by Eddy
Also, the "answer this question" function should not be used to add comments. The point is to *answer* the question, not have a conversation. That´s what our chat is for! - Paralee, AGO 11, 2009

5 Answers

3
votes

Comments are not currently searchable. So what you folks have been saying here is correct: all the meaty stuff should be posted as answers.

...

What if I want to update or clarify my earlier post? I would recommend actually editing your earlier post. There are downsides: it's harder to see how a conversation progressed. But the upside is that when people come across your thread later on, the first answer they see is the best answer. I think that's pretty huge.

If you really need to see what a post used to be like: between "link" and "flag," under any post that's been edited, we have a History link. Try it out on, say, Eddy's question here.

Comments can also be used to clarify your own post, but you can't post very long comments, and again, they're not searchable.

What if I want to clarify, respond to, or comment on someone else's post? If it's a relatively short, minor point -- correcting typos, little factual errors, etc. -- go ahead and comment (or even just edit the original post, if your rep is high enough). That way, even when we're sorting by votes, your response will be associated with the answer you're replying to.

But:

  1. if your response is big, in-depth, and full of original content;
  2. if it would be valuable to have it show up in search results; and/or
  3. if it's something that would be useful to be able to vote for (e.g. if it's possible that it's the single best self-contained answer and deserves to show at the top);

then post it as an answer of its own.

Frequently, it'll be useful for a single user to just have a single answer to any single question. That 1:1:1 correspondence makes things very neat, tidy, and easy to sort through. Of course, there will still be plenty of times when it makes sense to post two distinct answers.

Why don't you just make comments searchable? It's certainly something we're aware of and are considering. But we want the best content to be in answers, not comments, so people can vote on it and find it easily. Most comments will probably be fairly minor, and would add more noise than signal to search results.

Still, again, it's worth considering. Your thoughts on the matter are, of course, most welcome.

updated AGO 11, 2009
edited by Toph
posted by Toph
0
votes

Do we know yet if the Comments are searchable? Will they come up in keyword searches?

I don't really know yet, but that is another good point against answering in comments.

updated AGO 7, 2009
posted by 00494d19
0
votes

Hi hhm I don't think they are which is why I have posted this thread. I will enquire just to make sure.

updated AGO 7, 2009
posted by Eddy
0
votes

Two good points. We don't want good answers getting lost or going unnoticed. Also, people can't vote for your superb answer if it is just contained in a comment.

Do we know yet if the Comments are searchable? Will they come up in keyword searches?

updated AGO 7, 2009
posted by hhmdirocco
0
votes

This is an important issue. I have seen some questions answered like this and the answer might get lost .

Please refrain from using it like this. It is also not a chat facility, If you wish to chat, please visit our new voice or text chat. Thanks.

Answer the questions , or ask a question in relation to this question in a new post. grin

updated AGO 7, 2009
posted by 00494d19
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