Taking a look at the revision history of the question, "Can an Arcane Trickster or Eldritch Knight with the Magic Initiate feat (picking the wizard list) use spell slots to cast the chosen 1st-level spell?, you will notice six gold-badge open/close actions. You might be tempted to say "looks kind of like an edit war, we have a meta for that already", but there is a lot going on there, and I think it beneficial for the community to reflect on the situation and have a discussion about how this situation should be handled.
I will attempt to faithfully reproduce a complete timeline of all the relevant goings-on here. There are three questions involved, they will be labelled so:
I have used the names of everyone who was involved in the community moderation of this situation, all of whom are over 20k rep. Nothing said here should be construed as anyone having done something with ill intent - I believe everyone named acted in good faith with the best intentions to push everything toward a desirable resolution. If those users named wish their names to be redacted they may do so or leave a comment and I will do so.
B1 is asked. (10/21 3:54)
B1 is dupe hammered by Purple Monkey as a dupe of A. (3:55)
The asker of B1 responds in an answer to A asking about the particular case of AT and EK. (4:23)
User's answer was deleted. (5:13)
V2Blast starts a bounty for updated answers to A. (5:23)
V2Blast edits B1 explaining that the question is specifically concerned with AT and EK, which is something not addressed in any of the answers to A. (5:29)
B2 is asked. (11:32)
Thomas Markov dupe hammers B2 as a duplicate of A. (11:35)
Thomas Markov reopen hammers B1. (11:55)
Thomas Markov answers B1. (11:55)
Thomas Markov answers A. (12:13)
NautArch and Thomas Markov edit A to be asking specifically about the example given in the question. The motivation here was to more clearly differentiate A from B1. (12:44)
V2Blast rolls back Naut's and Thomas' edits to A. (18:41)
NautArch dupe hammers B1 as a dupe of A. (19:11)
Thomas Markov copies his answer to B1 into his answer to A. (19:14)
GcL reopen hammers B1. (19:22)
Naut, Thomas, and GcL discuss the question briefly in chat and come to a concensus that it should be closed. (19:25)
GcL dupe hammers B1. (19:32)
Thomas rolls a natural 20 to leave the question closed. (19:35)
Doppelgreener votes to reopen B1 and Darth Pseudonym sends it home with a reopen hammer. (21:15)
Thomas Markov opens a meta discussion over whether or not B1 should be closed as a dupe of A and answers in favor of closure. (10/22 16:17)
Where did we go wrong?
There is a lot going on here. Too much. The trouble is that B1 seems to be well within the scope of A, but none of the answers to A shed clarity on the particulars of B1 (at the time B1 was asked).
GcL expressed their concerns rather poignantly in chat:
I would assume they find it frustrating to have questions closed as duplicates of something that doesn't answer their question, because I have found that frustrating. But they might not.
It does seem like it's a non-obvious and circuitous path to get to the resolution.
- Ask question that isn't currently answered.
- Get closed as "answer already exists"
- Go back and forth in edits.
- Get question opened, answered, and closed again.
- A bounty, for which they didn't have the points themselves, added to other question.
- The answer to their question gets added to the other question.
I don't think there's a way OP could have gotten to the end state directly. The path seems like, "please cause error to get swat on the nose and service."
What do we do when a question is asked that is obviously covered as a subset of an existing question, but the answers are insufficient for answering the special case?
We should also consider here: what do we expect a new user to do? How can we improve the new user experience here?