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This answer to this question seems really correct: Song name where a (probably) computer generated voice states random facts.

It even has received two upvotes. Is there a reason for deleting it?

I checked the link and the song answers all OP's requests.

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  • Funny to notice that even if this discussion seems important to have with you guys, someone still felt the urge the downvote my question... that's very encouraging. – Bebs Jul 28 '17 at 20:51
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    Keep in mind that even though the 3 answers came from Mods, the vote may have come from anyone who felt this wasn't a good question. I can't tell you who downvoted, because I don't know, but I can tell you it wasn't me. I think it's a fair, legit question, personally. – Johnny Bones Aug 7 '17 at 13:33
  • Related: musicfans.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/378/… – Bebs Jan 28 '19 at 14:58
  • It was a link-only answer. Those are not "answers". No matter of its score OR accuracy; they should be immediately removed. – user7708 Jan 24 at 11:13
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I'm just going to copy and paste the relevant FAQ section:

Answers that do not fundamentally answer the question may be removed. This includes answers that are:

  • commentary on the question or other answers

  • asking another, different question

  • “thanks!” or “me too!”

  • responses exact duplicates of other answers

  • barely more than a link to an external site

  • not even a partial answer to the actual question

If you wish to improve an existing answer, click the edit link beneath it.

This was the bolded case. It does not matter if it answered the question or not it's just a link and a few words. This is not acceptable period and it sat flagged for an entire month before it was deleted which should have been more than enough time to fix it.

Correct or Incorrect this is not a valid answer and the community needs to work on this. If we accept garbage we will get more garbage and with our community moderation in general being so low this is a serious issue especially if we can't even decided what answers should look like on questions like this.

Just highlighting the matching similarities will avoid this issue as thought is put into the answer rather than just "here it is" which for questions of this caliber is always a guess.

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    The bolded part is included in Answers that do not fundamentally answer the question. In the discussed case, the answer answers the question. – Bebs May 7 '19 at 11:31
  • @Bebs link only answers never answer the question on their own. They need the person to follow the link for it to make sense. As we've seen, links rot away so what used to be an answer today can easily not be an answer tomorrow hence why they are extremely discouraged. – Dom May 7 '19 at 11:40
  • In the discussed case, it was not a link only answer and it highlights a matching similarity. – Bebs May 7 '19 at 11:43
  • @Bebs we've talked about this a lot. As a site, we need a community standard for these types of answers or else our quality will continue to slip. Here is the entire text without the link "facts of life by lazyboy. amusing song, like you said.". Is that an acceptable, high quality answer regardless of if it correct or not? In my opinion, it should not be. There's no reason to think it is this answer and people need to go and listen to the song and see if it matches. There's no effort put forward to say why it is the answer. – Dom May 7 '19 at 16:17
  • I didn't say it was a high quality answer. To me it's a low quality that should be downvoted but not deleted because it is still an attempt to answer. – Bebs May 7 '19 at 16:21
  • @Bebs Low quality answers should be deleted. Bad/wrong answers should be down voted. It's why the Low quality queue has the delete option. I'm fine with changing my views on low quality to mach the site's but I don't think there is a clear consensus. And debates like this spark other issues. For example, we are spending a lot of time moderating content that was not in scope due to reasons like this in the first place and any attempts to moderate it have come up with resistance, but we have no solutions on how to handle the content . – Dom May 7 '19 at 17:56
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Low quality answers have become a significant problem on this site. This is a problem that needs to be addressed, but the moderators are getting very little in the way of policy feedback from the user community. In the absence of community based policy, the moderators are falling back on standard SE policies as the default, and standard SE policies are to delete low quality answers.

Let me clarify something. "Low quality answers" has a fairly specific meaning in SE and is not to be confused with "answers that aren't as useful to me" or even "answers that I think are wrong". A quality answer is clear, specific, and detailed. A one sentence answer may be clear and specific, but is not detailed, and that makes it low quality.

Why this matters: Quality answers are resources for future visitors, they provide helpful information that a searcher may not even have realized they were looking for. Usefulness to future visitors is one of the reasons why SE works. One sentence answers help only the original poster.

So, if this community wants to be a serious SE site, we need to improve the quality of the answers that we are getting. To do that, we have to enforce quality standards - and one sentence answers just won't cut it.

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  • Hi Don, I don't see that SE standards are to delete low quality answers, but to downvote (if the reader thinks it is low quality) answers. If the reader is a mod, he can also convert it to a comment. When an answer is auto flagged as LQA, it doesn't mean that it is LQA, but that a mod has to check it. – Bebs Jul 28 '17 at 15:07
  • Questions that generate that kind of answer are not very important to me so I don't want to see them popping once in a while by Community, especially when (thanks to my rep points) I can see that a correct answer has be given but deleted. By letting the answer be, the question will not be popped and we can forget it. – Bebs Jul 28 '17 at 19:55
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    @Bebs that's not how the site should work. the question still exists either way and as we're seeing is filling up the site regardless. If we don't like the questions it's not the answers fault nor does it justify allowing wrong or low quality answer being upvoted in place of real ones. I see wrong answers to those questions where the OP themselves say "this is not right" upvoted which mark the question as "answered" even though it is not. I downvote every instance of this as it's not healthy for this site. I'm sorry if I seem aggressive on this, but I do want to fix this for the site – Dom Jul 29 '17 at 0:44
  • @Dom I wasn't talking about wrong answers upvoted of course, but deleted correct answers. – Bebs Jul 29 '17 at 5:35
  • @Bebs all we know is the answer was a link and 5 words which is by all definitions a low quality answer. correct or incorrect had nothing to do with this deletion not should it ever have anything to do with deletion. – Dom Jul 29 '17 at 5:44
  • @Dom son what is the proper behaviour? Repost as wiki like I did? I think I should include more détail maybe... – Bebs Jul 29 '17 at 5:47
  • @Bebs wikis are not for things like this. in fact they are for the opposite. it's the broken window philosophy. low quality posts spawn other low quality posts. so either they need to be fixed or removed. I've fixed some and deleted some. when a user puts 0 effort into an answer it's hard not to delete over editing. – Dom Jul 29 '17 at 5:51
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Yeah, I was just looking at that. Gotta get Dom's perspective, maybe he felt more info could have been added to make it a more complete, thorough answer? Either way, the proper course of action is probably to wait for an answer to this question first before copy/pasting a deleted answer.

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  • But the deleted answer is correct (99% sure)... In the list of reason to delete an answer I don't see a reason to delete (offensive? No ; not an answer ? No ; spam ? No ...). – Bebs Jul 27 '17 at 20:05
  • what do you mean by "The proper course of action is probably to wait for an answer to this question first before copy/pasting a deleted answer"? Is that when a correct answer has been deleted by a moderator, only wrong answers are allowed? – Bebs Jul 28 '17 at 6:40
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    there is a thing called low quality answers that get auto flagged. because we as a community won't decide one way or another the mods have to make this decision. I've been trying to hold back on judgments, but it's hard especially when on any other site an answer like that would be immideatly deleted. Remember the original community decision was to not allow questions of this nature for many reasons and personally I think that was the right choice as answered or not, these questions don't bring much to the table but noise in both questions and answers. – Dom Jul 28 '17 at 12:19
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    just checking the history, it sat in the low quality queue for a month before I finally decided that the answer was indeed a low quality answer because it was just a link and a sentence. We have a real problem on this SE with deciding policy and if we don't do it issues like this will keep coming up. – Dom Jul 28 '17 at 12:24
  • @Dom, Johnny, I know I have no chance against two mods, but I've seen this discussion on other SE and the common decision is not to delete, but to downvote or to convert it as a comment. To me, deletion is an extreme decision especially when the answer is correct. – Bebs Jul 28 '17 at 15:14
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    @Bebs low quality answers are not acceptable on any SE. You can't "no" as an answer on any site there needs to be justification just like a link alone is not an answer and is deleted on any other site. We also balked on allowing these questions and they have become a problem. They were never fully allowed it was just a trial. The community needs to step up here and either take care of them or get rid of them. – Dom Jul 28 '17 at 15:30
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    @Bebs That's the problem. It's not the mods decision. We are enforcers of the community. The problem is the community has not reached a consensus so the mods are trying to do what we can with no feedback from the community. The community originally decided to ban these questions, then the community wanted to allow them to expand the community which has not happened, but we're left with a mess of flags and abandon questions which the community as a whole needs to take care of. – Dom Jul 28 '17 at 15:53
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    @Bebs - I'd lean towards converting them to comments. That's not a bad idea, as the "answer" is preserved, but still allowing someone to come in and really flesh it out properly. – Johnny Bones Jul 28 '17 at 16:18
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    Comments are not for partial or low quality answers. They are also subject to deletion for many different reasons including just being noise. Converting to a comment should only be for when it make sense to keep the post, but not as an answer. See this – Dom Jul 28 '17 at 17:06
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    @Dom - Many times (on SO, particularly in Access) I see comments left that are partial answers. Not enough to leave as an answer, but enough to give a little push in the right direction. I think it's widely acceptable, even though the SE network doesn't necessarily "by the book" approve. On a Q&A site, I don't think the best idea is to delete a technically correct answer simply because it doesn't look like an answer should. Leaving it as a comment at least allows the answer to exist, albeit not as a complete answer. – Johnny Bones Jul 28 '17 at 17:18
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    SO is a monster. Getting through the closed vote queue is a challenge let alone moderating comments. Just because it's not cleaned up as much on SO as it can be does not mean that we should do it to fix answer we can't be sure of one way or another is correct and is essentially just a link. Remember only the OP can say for sure if the answer is correct in questions like this (we can't read minds) which also hurts in in a Q&A capacity as we don't get any questions that are useful long term especially in cases like this when the OP is never heard from again. – Dom Jul 28 '17 at 17:27
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    Either way if we convert them to comments the low quality issue still remains without a real solution. – Dom Jul 28 '17 at 17:30
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    "Remember only the OP can say for sure if the answer is correct in questions like this". Incorrect answers get downvoted, not deleted. But if we delete an answer that might be correct, it's much worse. Leaving it as a comment at least gives the OP a chance to say whether or not it's valid or helpful. I think we need a separate thread for this. – Johnny Bones Jul 28 '17 at 17:40
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    We can't judge these answers accuracy though which is the entire point. These question don't fit into the SE model at all and are burdening us. Low quality answer need to get fixed or deleted. We're a site collecting questions and answers that are only useful to one person. – Dom Jul 28 '17 at 17:42
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    @Bebs for your first comment see this. This falls under the bullet point "barely more than a link to an external site". – Dom Jul 28 '17 at 17:59
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All three of the moderators here had responded to you quite well. I am going to add to what they had said:

The "correct answer" was a not-an-answer, specifically, a link-only answer.

Link-only answers are only "links"; there is no answer in the text of the post, but only a link to an external site. If the OP only reads the text of the post, he/she will not receive an answer.

Think about apples: (Image by Shog9)

enter image description here

The goal is an apple. We see:

  1. A full, fresh, red apple, labeled answer.

  2. An orange, which is not an apple. It is labeled not an answer.

  3. A "partial" apple, labeled partial answer.

  4. A sign that contains an apple drawing and an arrow, representing link-only answers. This is not an apple. It is labeled not an answer.

  5. A rotten apple with worms, labeled low-quality answer.

Thus, they will always fall into the following status:

A | NAA | A | NAA | VLQ


So, next time, don't treat any link-only answers as actual "answers".

Let's say, you ask your waifu for an apple. If she comes with:

  • A whole apple: You would be happy, as she gave you exactly what you wanted.

  • An orange: You would be like, "What...? I asked for an apple, not an orange. You need to give me an apple."

  • A "partial" apple: You wouldn't be fully satisfied, but it does benefit you in some way.

  • A sign containing an apple drawing and an arrow: You would be like, "Is this some kind of a joke? First, a sign that contains an apple drawing is a sign, not an apple. Second, you can't have me take extra footsteps to try to get me an apple by myself. You were supposed to give me a real apple in the first place."

  • A rotten apple with worms: You would be like, "BAAAAAAAAAAARF!!! 🤮 That's just gross, give me a different apple."


Here is an example question:

Can you list how a PAC + root position/inverted IACs, leading-tone IAC, and a PC is written in natural minor?

  • Answer: The cadences are v(7)-i for PAC + root position/inverted IACs, VII-i for leading-tone IAC, and iv-i for PC.

  • Not an answer: What is a PC?

  • Partial answer: The cadences are v(7)-i for PAC + root position/inverted IACs, and VII-i for leading-tone IAC.

  • Not an answer (link only): See here.

  • Low-quality answer: dnjeji4ii4i3jejw8t7itj5jej&~.~.'#@&@&~~&&×%☆○>}[{※★!


Now here is how we should treat answers' status with flags:

  • Answer - A (ex. full answer) - No flag

  • Not an answer - NAA (ex. posted as an answer but does not answer the question; should be a comment/another question/deleted altogether) - not an answer

  • Partial answer - A (ex. answers that partially answer the question) - No flag

  • Not an answer (link only) - NAA (ex. posted as an answer but only contains an external link to a separate "answer" site; does not answer the question on its own) - not an answer

  • Low-quality answer - VLQ (ex. complete gibberish) - very low quality


So, the "answer" under examination here was a link-only answer. It only contained an external link to a different site and made no attempt to answer the question on it's own. Therefore, link-only answers are not "answers"; they should not be treated as real answers and must be immediately deleted.

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