I answered this question a couple weeks ago. Today the publishers put out an update to the system that changed the answer to the question, and I edited my answer to account for that.

Should I have just edited my previous answer (which the asker might not look at and see) or should I have created a new answer to alert the asker?

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Just FYI, I did get a notification for your edit, too. Though only as a push notification through the app :D (To prevent further comments: I know that the app is no longer supporterd - I simply never got around to deleting it) \$\endgroup\$
    – Patta
    Commented Aug 28, 2018 at 9:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Patta good to know, thanks \$\endgroup\$
    – willuwontu
    Commented Aug 28, 2018 at 12:23
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    \$\begingroup\$ "which the asker might not look at and see" while it might feel strange, the goal of SE is to help more than the asker (and sometimes the asker has abandoned the site/lost their account, so it doesn't matter)... though there's nothing wrong to notify the asker manually by comment if you update the answer. \$\endgroup\$
    – Andrew T.
    Commented Aug 29, 2018 at 7:25

1 Answer 1


I don't think there's a hard and fast policy either way.

Personally, I think that if you're going to totally (or almost entirely) overwrite your previous answer because it's invalidated by a change, you should simply write a new answer (and maybe delete the old one). The votes on the answer were on an answer that is totally different from its current form, for instance.

Alternately, if your old answer is invalidated by the change but you still want to acknowledge that there was a change in the rules, you could edit your original answer to state the new/current answer front and center, and then briefly summarize what changed/what the old answer was before that change.

Either way, whether you edit the original answer or simply post a new one, the question will be pushed back to the top of the front page when there's answer activity (whether it's a new answer or an edit to an old one).


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