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A few times I've gone to answer a question and just after or before I actually submit a very similar answer is posted. I've lurked stackexchange sites for a while now, but I've never been this involved in answering questions. Should I just leave my answer up there and let the community decide, or is there "unwritten law" that I should just delete my answer if it's older?

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    This question ended up being a perfect example of this. – Grace Note ModStaff Jul 9 '10 at 18:00
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If an answer of mine is totally redundant, I may delete it. If it adds something, I let the voters decide if the extra information helps, making mine better, or if it's just cruft, making the other person's answer better.

There isn't really any convention as to what should be done if both answers are identical, however.

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  • Usually the voting system will handle these problems in a democratic manner. On SO, especially for some of the simpler questions, you'll see a number of 5 word answers at about 0 where as a really good answer will be at 5 or 6. – tzenes Jul 9 '10 at 17:42

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