I'm a bit confused by some moderator action. I posted a question asking for a direct proof of a certain fact. A superb answer was provided by Jochen Glueck. (Thanks again!)

I came across another proof by chance in some lecture notes I was reading. I felt the appropriate thing was to copy (with citation!) that proof into another answer. Sure, it didn't help me, but MO is more than just "user asks question; user gets answer; bye bye". I wanted to share this for the benefit of the community.

I happen to look at the question again today, and I see that a moderator deleted my answer. They didn't comment on it, suggesting improvement. Just a drive-by delete. Putting aside the rudeness/disrespect/whatever-word-you-want*,

What was the reason for this deletion? and, why was there no communication?

Are self-answers no longer encouraged? Certainly I'm not encouraged to support the community given this treatment.

*It's fairly well established that this sort of behaviour is what has driven many people away from the Stack Exchanged sites. I used to be fairly active, with >5k rep gained via answers over a few years, but packed it in, barely posting questions or answers now, largely due to this sort of behaviour

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    $\begingroup$ this was quite possibly a mistaken deletion, I would just flag it to the moderators, and I'm sure it will be resolved; mistakes happen, I would not read too much into this. $\endgroup$ Aug 24 at 11:50
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    $\begingroup$ @CarloBeenakker Thanks, have done. I appreciate that people were working quickly to get through a large backlog, and mistakes do happen $\endgroup$
    – user24601
    Aug 24 at 14:10
  • $\begingroup$ Deletion of answers seems like quite a big deal, though, so perhaps there should be a check in place; eg, maybe an answer is "proposed for deletion", then is only deleted if another mod confirms this. Of course, this adds more work for the (volunteer) mods... $\endgroup$
    – user24601
    Aug 24 at 14:11
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    $\begingroup$ "I see that a moderator deleted my question." I don't see that, at all. I see that a moderator deleted your answer. Maybe because your answer ended with several questions, indicating that it wasn't complete? $\endgroup$ Aug 24 at 22:50
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    $\begingroup$ @GerryMyerson, re, since the rest of the post shows that ‘question’ there was certainly a mis-type for ‘answer’, I have edited accordingly. $\endgroup$
    – LSpice
    Aug 25 at 0:54
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    $\begingroup$ Yes! Thank you, thank you! My apologies. As per the title, and the self-answer reference, it was indeed the answer which was deleted. Writing question in the body was a typo. Thank you, LSpice, for correcting this 😊 $\endgroup$
    – user24601
    Aug 25 at 8:36

1 Answer 1


My apologies for the mistaken deletion of your answer. — What led to this mistake was a combination of several circumstances: it was a self-answer of an anonymous user which got flagged as "not an answer" and which had questions at the end, and it had neither upvotes nor comments. Sorry again.

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    $\begingroup$ All good, mistakes happen. We live and learn! Particularly easy when clearly large backlog—which, incidentally, was done extremely promptly by the mods, in my view. [PS. I thought I had already written this in a comment, but it's not there any more... maybe it was removed or maybe I'm going insane!] $\endgroup$
    – user24601
    Aug 31 at 9:50

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