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The Bitcoin Stackechange is not intended to be a place for discussions, but a place for answers.

These rencent posts 1 (with self answer), 2 (with self answer), 3 (with self answer) are just trying to move discussions from Bitcoin Talk to here. Sometimes without even a summary of the problems discussed or the arguments to solve them.

I haven't tried to find more of those "threads", but I guess it would be easy find more…

What do you think? Should we allow such posts? I guess the answer is no; how to explicitly state they are not welcome, and discourage them?

  • I closed the worst of the three. – David Schwartz Mar 11 '12 at 13:19
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    Actually it's a pity because the question was good (provided some explanation is added about of what is proof-of-stake), only the answer was terrible. But maybe closing is the only solution? – Stéphane Gimenez Mar 11 '12 at 13:54
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    The question was a link, the answer was a link. The questioner knew the answer already. It doesn't get much worse than that. ;) – David Schwartz Mar 11 '12 at 14:01
  • @DavidSchwartz - when I posted the question, I didn't know the answer. After learning a bit more, I posted an answer. It wasn't the perfect answer, but I felt that it was better than no answer. – ripper234 Mar 11 '12 at 16:03
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Regarding questions. If the question invites to a lot of discussion then it's not a good question. I think that the decision by D. Schwartz to close the last one was a good one.

Regarding answers. Answers that just contain a link are never good answers. I had already made a comment to one of ripper's answers and he improved it.

how to explicitly state they are not welcome, and discourage them?

I think that things work pretty well as they are. Make sure to use the "close" link if you don't think that the question is appropriate (or write a comment / notify the mods if you don't have permission to vote-to-close). Also, write a comment to explain why you don't think it's good.

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    In my book, an answer that contains just a link is better (even if only marginally) than no answer, and of course an answer with more info is better than just a link. A link answer is certainly not worse than no answer. – ripper234 Mar 11 '12 at 16:04
  • @ripper234 the problem with link-only answers is that they aren't future-safe. SE can't guarantee that any other site on the internet will be up in the future, no matter how big or permanent they look right now. If the site you link to goes down, that answer is now entirely worthless to any future users. To this end, please refrain from posting link-only answers. – David Perry Mar 11 '12 at 19:17
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By some coincidence (or not), I am the author of all three posts, so I'll try to explain.

In my honest opinion, all three posts represent true questions. The fact that the questions behind them came from a forum thread is irrelevant. The fact that I posted my own answer to them is also irrelevant (self answers are not discouraged on Stack Exchange).

One legitimate critisisim is perhaps the lacks of enough details in the posts. The questions you linked to all have a positive total vote score, so I guess other site users didn't feel these details are missing. In any case, closing such questions is not the right response, but rather we should ask for the missing details (I'll be happy to fill in whatever details you think are missing).

Another possible critisim is that you think these questions are not real questions. We have the close vote process for that, you're free to vote to close any of them, and discuss individually why you believe they are not questions, or just not a good fit for this format.

I think that just because a question is hard, it doesn't mean it's not useful. For example this question has no simple answer at this point, but an answer can be derived at using game theoretical and economic principles. It is not, in my book, a speculative question (perhaps some rephrasing can improve it, but look at the core, not the specific wording, and edit if you can improve it).

  • Sure, I voted up one question, but then I was disappointed when I understood what was the motivation: just a link to another thread… I also already voted to close "this" question you talk about (which is technically a duplicate of a previous one) because it turn out it is non-constructive. The only answer I would like to see on this Q/A site is the game theory formalization of the problem, and the answer which results for it, not just “it can be done”, or random discussions starting with "I really think that". – Stéphane Gimenez Mar 11 '12 at 13:37
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    At a minimum, the question should explain the issue that is being asked about and should invite real answers, not discussion or comments. The answers should actually try to answer the question, not debate it. – David Schwartz Mar 11 '12 at 14:02
  • @David - All this can be addressed with specific comments and/or voting on the questions & answers. And once a once-bad post is edited, such voting should be updated to reflect the latest form of the question. – ripper234 Mar 12 '12 at 16:10

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