-1

In this answer, the OP collated the other two answers into a single one, without providing any credit or attribution to the original answers, or explaining why, if the information was acceptable as an answer, the OP wouldn't in fact accept one of them as an actual answer.

In one of the comments under my answer the OP said that I did provide the answer they were looking for, but they didn't want to accept my answer nonetheless because they didn't like my style:

Also, the IDF spokesman quote does answer my question and I wasn't able to find it myself before posting the question. But I cannot bring myself to accept your answer as it contains an incorrect statement about me not bothering to search. Regarding the war-crime tag, this deals with potential ill treatment of prisoners which is a war crime

(Worth noting, I removed the sentence that offended the OP, and the OP agreed with removing the tag)

Is plagiarizing the content of one answer and posting it as a new and separate answer an acceptable practice on this stack, or is it a case of abusing the "community wiki" tool?

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  • 6
    Question OP here. For full context, the reason for creating the community wiki is that, at the time, the existing answers contained lots of irrelevant information: Accusing me of not doing research "did you even look?", passive-aggressive statements of apparently how easy it was to find the information, "first result", "second result", an analysis of whether one of the tags used was valid. All of this is better suited for comments rather than part of an answer.
    – hb20007
    Commented Mar 12 at 7:05
  • Is it an acceptable practice to extract only the parts that are relevant to the question from 2 answers and combine them into a community wiki?
    – hb20007
    Commented Mar 12 at 7:09
  • 4
    @hb20007: it's probably better to edit or flag such answers. Commented Mar 12 at 9:22
  • 2
    @Dolphin613Motorboat I asked the question so it would seem disingenuous to edit the answer before accepting it. Instead, I left 2 comments explaining why I believe the answer quality is lacking, where I mentioned all the issues.
    – hb20007
    Commented Mar 12 at 10:02
  • Which I have addressed, it least in my answer
    – littleadv
    Commented Mar 12 at 16:05
  • Wonder why its being downvoted, seems a pretty reasonable issue to want the community to clarify. I've been contributing to SE for more than a decade, that's the first time I've encountered someone blatantly plagiarizing my content within the same context of the same question.
    – littleadv
    Commented Mar 12 at 16:16
  • When up-voting or down-voting this question it's unclear to me whether I'm looking at the title or at the question in the final sentence, which appear to be asking opposite viewpoints.
    – brhans
    Commented Mar 12 at 20:56
  • @brhans well... It is either abuse or it is acceptable, that's what I'm asking. The plagiarizing part is a given, and the OP of the wiki answer is not contesting that.
    – littleadv
    Commented Mar 12 at 21:41
  • Sure - but is an up-vote "yes this is an abuse", or is it "yes plagiarizing content is acceptable"?
    – brhans
    Commented Mar 12 at 21:48
  • 4
    @littleadv For the record, I do contest to the word "plagiarism", which is defined as passing off someone else's work as one's own.
    – hb20007
    Commented Mar 12 at 21:48
  • @hb20007 well, you didn't attribute finding the quotes that you copied from my answer, even though you admitted in the comments that you were unable to find them yourself.
    – littleadv
    Commented Mar 12 at 21:49
  • @brhans an upvote is "this is a valuable question". Yes or no should be in an answer.
    – littleadv
    Commented Mar 12 at 21:50
  • @littleadv It's true that I did not attribute the quotes, but it is a community wiki, which indicates that 1. I do not claim that the answer is my own work 2. It is derived from the other answers to the question.
    – hb20007
    Commented Mar 12 at 21:51
  • @hb20007 hence my question - is what you're doing an acceptable use of community wiki? You downvoted my answer, copied it into a separate answer, didn't give me any credit, and in essence you stole my work. I don't care if you took credit for it or not, I care about the theft itself.
    – littleadv
    Commented Mar 12 at 21:52
  • 1
    @littleadv Well, plagiarism is defined as taking credit for someone else's work, so it is not plagiarism. I am also interested to see what the community thinks of this practice though, which is why I'm following this question too.
    – hb20007
    Commented Mar 12 at 21:53

1 Answer 1

7

After a brief review of the situation, my position is that I dislike both sides equally:

  • It is not necessary to point out things like the tags on the question, insinuations of the OP failing to do research, etc., and hb20007 is entirely right to object to those portions of both answers.
  • Posting an answer which is substantially duplicative of other answers is not terribly helpful. The proper course of action is to edit out the offending content. "It would seem disingenuous" is not an actual rule. Just edit the answer if it has irrelevant content. If the content is extensive, closely integrated into the answer, or you're otherwise uncomfortable editing it, then leave a comment instead.
  • No, it is not "plagiarism" to copy a quote, as long as that quote is properly attributed to the person who actually said or wrote it. In some cases, it may be helpful to readers to explain where you found the quote, but the finder of the quote does not have an absolute and unqualified right to be attributed as the finder of the quote. Think about it: If scholarship really worked like that, the average citation would be multiple paragraphs of chained attributions. In some cases, a "double" citation is given, but this is most typical when the secondary source which contains the quote also contains some other relevant information, and you want to help readers find that information. That was not the case here - indeed, the whole point of the exercise was removing irrelevant information.
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    Since there is now an upvoted answer to this expressing the community's thoughts on what happened, and since the quality of one of the answers on the original question was improved, I have deleted the community wiki answer.
    – hb20007
    Commented Mar 13 at 8:43

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