or
samcarter
faq
How will duplicate questions be treated?

Personally I liked the approach from SO to link to the existing post to avoid spreading out possible answers over multiple places, but leave the duplicate around to act as a signpost for future users with the same problem.
Top Answer
Paul White
I'm a fan of **linking** to "duplicate" Q & A but not so much of **closing** (= preventing answers) at the same time. This is something I think the SE model *almost* got right, but not quite. In most cases I have encountered, a question is rarely an **exact** duplicate (such that no useful answer to the specific question is possible).

Where the suggested "duplicate" answers the question, the querent may still need **specific guidance** on how to adapt the **general solution** to their particular circumstance. If nothing else, this provides an extra example for future readers.

If something new and interesting arises from the more specific question, the conscientious answer-writer would also update the more general linked Q & A as appropriate.

I would favour a list of "related" Q & A **immediately below the question**, with a short header text to describe its purpose, and to guide people on when local answers should be added (and not).

If something is truly an *exact* duplicate, the link would suffice and no more specific answer need be added. We just shouldn't enforce that with some closure-like restriction.
Answer #2
Jack Douglas
You can now post an answer which simply links to another answer within the same community:

For example:

```
@@@ answer 620
```

produces:

@@@ answer 620

In some cases an answer linking to another answer and with no other text would be perfectly appropriate. In other cases you can add your own comments as well. In either case, you deserve the credit for discovering the other answer and linking it for the OP's benefit here.

We are hoping this will eventually result in a natural ranking of 'canonical' answers — rather than subjectively tagging them, canonical answers will just be those linked most often.
Duplicate questions
Paul White
It might not be needed if the related/dupe answer rises to the top of the answers list, but it's something I'm bearing in mind
Paul White replying to Jack Douglas
There may still be scope to improve the Q & A page view e.g. https://topanswers.xyz/databases?q=815 so it shows related Q & A more prominently
Paul White replying to Jack Douglas
That is a great improvement.
Jack Douglas replying to Paul White
Fixed by putting a link in there — I can't think of anything better than that, can you? 
Paul White
Something friendlier than the `@@@ answer nnn` text
Paul White replying to Jack Douglas
Could we make linked dupes look a bit better on the home page?  
![meta.png](/image?hash=234f46e44c851d5b297e15c73ff31be00f0319f7676ef46419578b5fe43a94e3)
Jack Douglas replying to David
I'd probably have linked to the question on [this answer](https://topanswers.xyz/meta?q=697#a801) if I'd had the option, and I'm sure there will be even more clear-cut cases in the future, even for answered questions.
David replying to Jack Douglas
Ah, gotcha — so yes, I had missed something (again!). :) But that does make sense, and I can't think of another possibility for linking *unanswered* "duplicates". (And linking *answers* where possible, is a super way to do it "normally", the default mode as it were.)
Jack Douglas replying to David
I hesitated to do this before because some questions might have many (even hundreds) of answers — but now we have the 'show n more' idiom, that could be used for `@@@ question 538` in the same way, does that sound sensible to you?
David replying to Jack Douglas
Btw, integrating it into the answer mechanism is a neat idea, imo.
David
@Jack That's quite cool, Jack (and I've already tried it "for real"!). But how can you link "dupes" with no answers? Any chance of a `@@@ question 538` type syntax, so at least future answers go to one place? (Not necessarily the oldest Q, but likely that unless newer is also better posed...) Or am I missing something (again!)? (P.s. you've been extra busy today!)
Paul White replying to Jack Douglas
Looks nice
Jack Douglas
still to come are (1) a button that provides a shortcut to creating this type of 'linked' answer — probably just a popup that accepts an answer id or url and posts it un-annotated in an answer. and (2) proper style support in the editor preview pane.
Jack Douglas replying to Paul White
can you let us know what you think of [this example](/meta?q=515#a637) of the mechanism we have partly implemented? We want to give people an early look because it isn't quite like the way you suggested (it's integrated with the existing answer mechanism), and because we want feedback on the way the linked 'dupes' look.
Paul White replying to Jack Douglas
Maybe yes. I hadn't fully thought it through but I imagined just a listed of question titles. Having the first line of the answer is worth trying.
Paul White replying to Jack Douglas
I was thinking anyone could propose a linked Q & A and people could award stars to determine display order (ones without stars could age away). Awarding stars for finding useful linked Q & A is a reward missing from the SE system.
Jack Douglas
As for display, would something like the way questions appear in the main community home page list (with answer(s) attached but only the first line initially visible), be suitable for the display here too?
Jack Douglas
also, do you have any thoughts on an actual mechanism for related Q & A to be proposed / selected / overruled?
Jack Douglas
@Paul I like your answer here a lot. Do you envision any method of 'voting' to determine which Q & A are related, and in which order to show them? I guess there would quite often only be one, so I'm really asking about the case where there is more than one related Q & A
PeterVandivier
IMO one of the big value-adds of duplicate questions on SE is SEO / google indexing / discoverability. if the mandate of TA is a higher signal-to-noise ratio, then i think it's potentially a better policy to be diligent about merging duplicates. surely there can be a way to preserve the discoverability of information without fragmenting the results