I was in the middle of writing a answer to the question https://electronics.stackexchange.com/q/117324/4512, which is about a resistor in series with a relay coil, and how come the voltage on the relay was so low.

I had written a couple of paragraphs, created a schematic, and uploaded that into the answer. Then a bar pops up at the top of the browser saying that the question has been deleted and no more answers will be accepted.

I would like the system to not allow the OP to delete a question if a answer is in the process of being written. I believe the OP can't delete a question with existing answers, so that is already covered (if not it should be).

We are all volunteers here. Spending time writing a detailed answer then having the question get deleted out from under you is seriously demotivating. People new to this site sometimes delete questions, but I think they shouldn't be allowed to except in very limited circumstances, and it should require some minimum rep.

We have seen people sometimes not like the response they got to a question, so they deleted it and asked it again. This is usually from newcomers to the site that don't understand how things work, so some minimum rep would get around this problem too. In the very rare case where a question really should be deleted, it can be flagged for mod attention.

Argh! It just happened again

I spent some time to write a detailed answer to Eddy current in transformer and its minimization, which did get posted. Then the OP apparently deleted the question. It's not right to have people put effort into writing a good answer, only to have the question deleted.

Apparently, the OP can delete a question if it has no more than one answer and that answer hasn't gotten any upvotes. That's wrong. The OP should not be allowed to delete the question if any answer is present or being written, unless perhaps there has been only a single answer with no upvotes after some time, like a few hours to a day or something.

This is no way to treat volunteers who spend their free time providing good content for this site!


Since I spent the time explaining transformer cores, I was going to ask such a question and then use what I wrote previously as a answer. However, when I went to the deleted question, it seems it is no longer deleted. I didn't know that was possible. Now I'm really confused. What happened? What are the rules about when OPs can delete and undelete their questions?

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    \$\begingroup\$ While you are a volunteer, that doesn't give you the right to treat people as punching bags. What were you honestly expecting to happen with a comment like that? \$\endgroup\$ – W5VO Jul 1 '14 at 20:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ @W5VO: Telling someone to clean up a messy schematic is hardly using them as a "punching bag". He started out yesterday in a different question with a fritzing diagram. He provided a schematic when I complained. The schematic was a mess, but for someone just graduating from fritzing, I let it go and undid my downvote. Today should have been a simpler step to the final end, which is a decent schematic. I didn't even downvote the question. I expected him to fix things, as he did yesterday. In any case, this has nothing to do with the core of this question. \$\endgroup\$ – Olin Lathrop Jul 1 '14 at 20:32
  • \$\begingroup\$ Sure, saying that the schematic is confusing and doesn't follow conventions is fine. Explaining what he should do better is fine. You went further than what was necessary with your last two sentences. \$\endgroup\$ – W5VO Jul 1 '14 at 21:42
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    \$\begingroup\$ I think part of it is that all he's seeing is negative feedback for the extra effort he put in to give a schematic. He definitely improved, due to your feedback. There's no fritzing, and it's a schematic. You even didn't give him a downvote (which is practically an upvote from other people). Both of you should be somewhat happy with the result. \$\endgroup\$ – W5VO Jul 1 '14 at 21:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ The current rules at electronics.stackexchange.com/help/deleted-questions still allow a user to delete if there's only one answer and it doesn't have any upvotes. \$\endgroup\$ – PeterJ Jul 2 '14 at 6:10

Seriously, Olin? It was your own negative comment that prompted the OP to delete the question!

In any case, if you're thinking about posting an elaborate answer, it might be a good idea to post a short answer first, and then edit your elaborations into that.

  • \$\begingroup\$ The comment was to have him fix the schematic, not delete the whole answer. In any case this would have happend the same whether the OP was responding to someone else's comment or deleted the answer for some other reason altogether. I suppose writing a short answer then adding to it would work, but is more trouble, and also bumps the question to the top twice. When can't a OP with low rep delete his own question? When there is any answer, or does it require some minimum upvotes or something? \$\endgroup\$ – Olin Lathrop Jul 1 '14 at 15:08
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    \$\begingroup\$ @OlinLathrop Really? Reading your comment I got the impression that the OP wouldn't be getting any answers, let alone anything from you. I think this may be a case of you being too hostile for your own good. \$\endgroup\$ – W5VO Jul 1 '14 at 20:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ @W5VO: If he runs home to mommy from that comment, he'd better not ever step into a design review, or show up most everywhere else in life. \$\endgroup\$ – Olin Lathrop Jul 1 '14 at 20:35
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    \$\begingroup\$ @OlinLathrop I don't think you're being realistic here. To the OP, this probably isn't his day job, this is a hobby or something he does for fun. Where does a full-fledged design review make sense in that context? \$\endgroup\$ – W5VO Jul 1 '14 at 21:44

If you felt it was a question worth answering, you could ask it yourself then answer it yourself as well, or move on.


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