I came across this answer some time ago, and upvoted it because it seemed generally accurate and helpful. In recent days the tags on the question were edited and the question rose to the top of the pile, and I had an opportunity to re-read the answer.

The answer still seemed broadly correct, but on further examination I found it was not completely accurate and a little too narrow. The issues were not dealbreakers—they seemed like minor mis-phrasings or oversights, which were understandable as the answer was not written by someone who had personally worked a Clearance Delivery position. Rather than creating my own answer which would have restated almost everything found in the first one, and would have "competed" with it, I opted to add my own information and corrections to the existing answer.

My edit was rolled back to the original version by a third user, with a reference to this Meta question regarding an answer which had been expanded from seven words to 108. I feel like this was not taking my edit in the best of faith; while I admit to some re-shuffling of the answer, my edited answer clocked in at 229 words compared to the original's 186. I feel like I did not modify the meaning of the original answer; instead I corrected some errors in understanding and expanded the its scope to refer to all airports, not just towered ones (incorporating information present in the comments). I feel like I made a substantial edit and left the post better than I found it, as prescribed in the help center.

Did I overstep, or was my edit in line with site guidelines and normal use of the edit function?



2 Answers 2


I rolled back your edit. Allow me to explain why:

First of all, please don't misunderstand my action as a comment on the quality of your edit. I know you're an expert in the field, and I'm sure the changes improved the quality of the answer.

This is what I saw on the revisions page:


With this much red and green, it looked to me like the new version of that answer contains more text from you than from the original author. The total number of words is IMHO irrelevant here, what matters is how much you changed. On second look, quite some text was just moved and not written by you (the diff page shows moved parts as red on the left and green on the right, so this wasn't immediately obvious to me).

This case is clearly not as bad as the one I had linked on Meta, where an answer was changed from a single sentence to 4 paragraphs. I would however still classify your changes as a rewrite of the answer. To quote from the answer to the linked Meta question:

Nothing about a rewrite, which is the case here. [...]

Also the editor can submit a full answer as well.

That is why I would still prefer to see a new answer over this edit, you'd have my upvote for it. However, since the changes were not as significant as I originally thought, you can also just revert the answer back to revision 2, I won't intervene again.

Whichever option you choose, please go ahead with either of them, I wouldn't want your effort to go to waste.


I don't think you did anything wrong per se, but with that much of an edit I think you justifiably could have submitted your own answer.


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .