So, I stumbled across this question today (https://gaming.stackexchange.com/questions/137676/magic-launcher-wont-log-in). I see there is a comment answering the question in full detail. Is it at all unethical to copy what the user said (putting it into my own words of course) and put it down as an answer? Should I wait for the commenting user to do so themselves before attempting to answer using his information?

  • 1
    If you heed the cc-wiki terms it's technically fine, but I wouldn't expect the warmest of responses.
    – badp
    Aug 1, 2014 at 23:25
  • Sometimes, people just leave a comment instead of answering because they don't (think they have) the full answer. Like I'm doing right now.
    – MBraedley
    Aug 1, 2014 at 23:39
  • Combine the last two comments, and you have a good answer. Exactly my question, is it ethical for someone to do that? Aug 1, 2014 at 23:40
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    The community likely won't take well to it.
    – user11502
    Aug 2, 2014 at 0:41
  • 16
    It amuses me that this was answered in the comments before Robotnik answered.
    – Sterno
    Aug 2, 2014 at 10:49
  • 1
    Always relevant meta.serverfault.com/a/1931/180142
    – Braiam
    Aug 9, 2014 at 15:38

1 Answer 1


As Ashley Nunn said, the community generally doesn't like people who take credit for other's work. However there are still some things you can do:

If the question is answered in the comments, and the OP confirms that the comments answer the question, I usually prompt the commenters to add it as an answer.

If, after a couple of days the question is still unanswered, write an answer attributing the commenters, and mark the answer as community wiki. This way you're not earning rep for other people's work.

However, if you plan to add additional info which isnt addressed in the comments, then the answer is all yours. You should still attribute the original commenters if you're reinforcing one of their points. This answer is an example of this.

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    And, as you can see from the votes being cast on this answer, the community does not frown that much on this practice.
    – Zibbobz
    Aug 6, 2014 at 14:10
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    @Zibbobz - I'm also not earning any rep on it
    – Robotnik Mod
    Aug 6, 2014 at 22:08
  • then why not make the answer contributors via comment/s some sort of reward. lets say some rep maybe?
    – ken
    Aug 12, 2014 at 11:19
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    @ken - comments aren't meant for long term information collection but for clarifying meaning/followup. This isn't a forum - when comments are deleted they are removed permanently. Answers on the other hand retain full edit histories, and are kept even when 'deleted'. In other words, we should be striving to include vital data in questions & answers as much as possible - adding a rep reward to comments wouldn't be a good way to encourage that
    – Robotnik Mod
    Aug 12, 2014 at 14:38
  • @Robotnik ok i get. no giving rep to comment/s that answer a question. but what about another kind of reward? like a badge or something?
    – ken
    Aug 18, 2014 at 9:13
  • @ken - the 'Commentator' and 'Pundit' badges seem to do just that :-)
    – Robotnik Mod
    Aug 18, 2014 at 14:19

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