Imagine this Senario:

User A asked a question, and that did not get a response. Now the same user has opened a new Account and has posted the same question a second time.

When I go to mark it as a duplicate, I can't close it; I get the following error message:

enter image description here

I understand why this check was placed, and all for it; I just want to know what I should do in this case. (Right now I have flagged the question for the Moderators).

2 Answers 2


I believe moderators do not have the same restrictions--and they can also unilaterally just delete one of the questions if necessary--so one option is to flag the question for moderator attention. Please provide a link to the duplicate when you do so. Leaving a friendly comment pointing to the account merge help page would also be a nice thing to do if you feel so inclined.

  • 2
    I've done both. Jul 24, 2014 at 13:31
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    @Devdatta I have not fielded any such flags on the GIS site recently. Could you please provide a link to the question(s) so I can review their histories?
    – whuber
    Jul 24, 2014 at 13:34
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    The questions is: gis.stackexchange.com/questions/108237/… Jul 24, 2014 at 13:37
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    @Devdatta A moderator processed your flag five hours after you raised it. The action he took was to close the other question. In such cases moderators look at both (or sometimes three or more) questions and try to retain the one that is best formulated, accounting for any comments that might have been posted in the thread.
    – whuber
    Jul 24, 2014 at 13:40

I'm glad you asked about this because I saw the same question come through and tried to close it as a duplicate of the earlier one with the same result as you.

I just saw this Meta SE Q&A (Is it OK to post a duplicate of a question that didn't get upvoted or any accepted answer?) and it got me thinking.

The way I think I will handle such a situation when I next come across it is to propose closing it, not as a duplicate, but for the same reasons proposed for closing the original, and just comment that it looks like a duplicate of "...".

If there are no grounds for closure then I'll just make the same comment, and treat them as independent questions (which I do not have to answer or comment on) until one gets an upvoted or accepted answer, and then propose closing the other(s) as duplicates.

I think asking the same question again is always grounds for a downvote too.

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