As an example, below the answers to this

How does Hitler's interpretation of "Nationalist Socialism" relate to the modern interpretation of "Socialism" and "Nationalism"?

we witness some comments that are really in a very strange relationship to the post they are attached to.

For example:
There are two comments, one highly upvoted, that link to the Wikipedia page about the NSDAP party programme. Both comments and comment-voters seem to think that the page would prove anything, in favour of their world view.

So I edit my answer, making it even longer, to prove that this programme is not corroborating, with multiple example, quoted, cited, sourced and linked. Yet, these comments still get a lot of upvotes, despite the link itself, in that comment that forms the basis of their 'proof' clearly saying that most points of the programme were irrelevant in practice.

That looks quite crazy to me.

How should one react on this site to this level of ignorance?

(In the example given it seems to me that edits to address this "problem" were not only insufficient, but downright counterproductive. An immediate flag would be probably declined. But people reading that answer 'not liking it' – including for reasons that technically should not be a basis for voting on SE; despite us knowing to be the case all the time – get further reinforcement from these comments?)

Note, for this example, this comment:

[citation needed] on Hitler being "no socialist at all" and "influenced by capitalism." He was certainly no communist, but I can't see how any serious reading of NSDAP's own platform, let alone understanding of the extent to which industry was nationalized under the Third Reich and profiteering/materialism was demonized could possibly lead one to the conclusion that Hitler was somehow a proponent of capitalism.

is the strangest one. I first ignored it as non-sensical and only included another aspect addressing it after it received >10 upvotes. As far as I remember, I posted this meta question when it hit 19 upvotes and it now stands at 22.

1 Answer 1


I'm not surprised that people don't want to bother reading certain parts of your answer. That answer is super long, and the prose is confusing. Frankly, I don't feel like reading it.

See if you can make your answer shorter. Also make it simpler. Maybe then, people will bother reading it, and if they're reading it, maybe they won't leave comments about things you thought you had addressed in your answer.

  • Yes & no. Not that my A couldn't be improved. One of the reasons for length were the comments I addressed, and the main point here is that people had to read the A to conclude that 25points would prove anything contrary to my A. Only that the link they used and then voted upon already states that 25points were "largely ignored later" on. That is the long A and the link-target in a short comment contradict the assertion in the comment. Problem now is that I read the above as "comment criticises short answer" "don't address comments in comments; but shorten A to address crazy comment"? Dec 27, 2018 at 10:38
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    @LangLangC First, you are not required to address every comment on your answer, especially if the comment doesn't make sense. You can address these comments with a comment if you don't think it has any business being in your answer. Dec 27, 2018 at 23:35
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    @LangLangC Secondly, from what I've seen, your writing style is very long-winded. If you try, I'm sure you can encode the same amount of information in a much shorter and easier to understand answer. You don't even have to include all of the information. Just focus on the important points. If people are confused by a part of your answer, focus on just that part. Dec 27, 2018 at 23:38
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    Whether or not the answer is any good isn't the point. This is not a discussion forum, and certainly the first comment is trying to refute the answer, rather than offer a suggestion on how to improve the answer.
    – user11249
    Dec 27, 2018 at 23:45
  • Just got around to re-read my answer and your suggestion here. I think it gets even weirder into irrationality if you say that people do not bother to read the answer but bother to comment on it. If the answer were confusing on the issue, I'd edit it now. But if 'readers' are really non-readers to blarb out in comments regardless than it's a lost cause. // Isn't there a technical limitation set in place that prevents "too long" answers in the first place? // Now, asking your diamond persona: flag that comment (23 ups now!)? Dec 30, 2018 at 18:08
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    @LangLangC A lot of people will try to read the interesting parts, even if it doesn't mean reading the whole thing. Jan 1, 2019 at 19:42

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