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Closing questions that are basically duplicates is obviously good. But, though the questions and their content are linked in perpetuity, there is no process for merging the best parts of each. This can leave the best content stranded in the closed questions instead of being transferred to the open question.

An example that is recent can be seen in these questions:

This was asked recently https://skeptics.stackexchange.com/questions/13870/normal-coke-vs-diet-coke-health

This is still open as well Are diet sodas healthier than normal sodas?

But this is closed despite being highly up-voted and containing the best content of all of the questions: Is diet soda less healthy than regular soda?

So, do we need to create a formal mechanism to allow answer mergers to preserve the best content in the open answers? Or do we just need a better way to select the question version that remains open?

  • Moderators can merge questions if they are identical, that would be the best way to move all answers to one copy of the question. – Mad Scientist Nov 30 '12 at 13:05
  • moderators could also close the questions as dupes of the good one and reopen the good one – Ryathal Nov 30 '12 at 13:46
  • @Fabian the linked questions are a model example of where these actions should be taken but have not yet been taken. Can we see what can be done? – matt_black Nov 30 '12 at 14:17
  • Good is subjective, mods are not going to act based on that... – Sklivvz Nov 30 '12 at 18:11
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I've reversed the duplicates, as the closed question was older, had more votes and had an answer while the open one didn't have one.

Moderators can merge questions, though that only makes sense if there are good answers on both duplicates.

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