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Considering the somewhat-still-new guidelines we have for editing own question to include revised code, how should we handle old questions which violates this guideline and are, more or less, a mess?

Should we flag for moderator attention? (Not sure what would a moderator could do that others can't though, putting a historical lock on it perhaps but that would prevent further votes)

Should we rollback the question and post a comment to the new guidelines? (even though the question might be more than a year old)

Should we just leave it alone?

A little investigation has revealed that there are quite a bunch of these old questions out there, so guidelines for how to handle them would be good.

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We should just leave them alone


There is no good solution to these mixed-bag questions with code in varying states. If there was an easy solution, we would have done it already.

As it stands, my recommendation is that we just leave these things alone, and 'grandfather' the mess. New questions are held to the exacting requirements of 'no code changes after answers'. Old questions are dealt with on an as-needed basis.

They will continue to be a pain, but there are no better alternatives.

Editing them will invalidate subsequent answers, and the time required to identify and 'surgically correct' those questions that can be corrected, will be too much. As you said, locking them is a problem too, etc.

Further, fixing them also makes them 'active' again, and bumps them.

Bottom line, we just live with it.

There is a good option of declaring a 'grandfather date' though, questions 'after' that date are expected to be 'clean', questions from before, are potentially messy, and won't be fixed.

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    \$\begingroup\$ What about old messy questions that don't have an answer, yet? Could you address that? \$\endgroup\$ – Phrancis Dec 16 '14 at 20:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Phrancis - if there's no answer, then what's invalidated? Do you have a specific example? May help the discussion \$\endgroup\$ – rolfl Dec 16 '14 at 20:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ True. So no answer, handle as the usual zombie then. \$\endgroup\$ – Phrancis Dec 16 '14 at 20:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ What do we do with new questions that also end up as a mess? \$\endgroup\$ – Simon Forsberg Mar 23 '16 at 16:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SimonForsberg I think that situation (migrated-in messy questions) is probably best handled in its own Meta. \$\endgroup\$ – Kaz Mar 23 '16 at 17:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SimonForsberg They're new. Prevent the mess as much as possible. \$\endgroup\$ – Mast Aug 23 '16 at 16:30

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