I feel that some answerers are too overconfident and brash. Don't hesitate to edit this post to add more examples, but I found just two.

The most outright example is https://law.stackexchange.com/a/65393.

Many answers aren't supported or referenced by any legal authority. For example, the following two answers overlook the issue of whether there are exceptions to the rule that a person is bound by his signature. See the Ontario Court of Appeal case of Tilden Rent-A-Car Co. v. Clendenning (1978), 83 DLR (3d) 400.

First, as this is printed in the mass-printed jacket they put the rental agreement printout into at the desk, it's stretching things to say this is "slipped in".

You were told this was a term of the contract (not reading it is on you, not them) and it’s not an illegal term so, when you signed it, you agreed that they could act as your agent with respect to admitting liability and paying the fine.

  • This is not a problem unique to Law.SE; see the extensive Q&A regarding "what to do about wrong answers" on Meta.SE: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/tagged/wrong-answers
    – feetwet Mod
    Jun 13 at 17:48
  • 1
    I assume it is just an example to prove your point about referencing reliable sources, but the Tilden case is Canadian and (as far as I can establish) is neither precedent nor persuasive caselaw in Florida. If it were used to answer the cited question it may attract DVs and/or comments as per Pat W's answer, below.
    – Rock Ape
    Jun 14 at 7:58

You could write a better answer.

Or you might leave a comment below the answer explaining why it's wrong. Comments trigger notification, and then the author could take your feedback into account.

  • 1
    This doesn't address the case wherein 1. a different, correct and credible, answer has already been posted; 2. the error has already been pointed out and dismissed; 3. votes have lifted the score (or at least the reputation) of the person posting it. When all three are true, the only productive response is deletion. Since many hi-rep users here do not perform any useful moderation (e.g. explicitly refuse to do reviews, or to learn about the tools available) what else can a user do?
    – Nij
    Jun 14 at 9:39

Your complaint is about the structure of SE. It is a fundamental fact of this platform that it "encourages" rather than "discourages", via asymmetries (upvotes get more reward than downvotes). Comments can be upvoted but not downvoted. Deletion not only erases the answer or question, it erases the consequences of posting (the point loss and gain).

I disagree with the idea that leaving comments is useful, but that is because comments are severely abused (they incur no cost). There can be useful comments, but they are often buried in a barrage of, well, whatever you want to call it. Writing a competing answer is the appropriate response when you disagree with an answer.

It is a fact that there can be two competing answers, where one is more-upvoted but of lower quality. That is the nature of social media. I agree that every answer should provide supporting textual evidence, and yet very often no support is given. For example, an answer about contract law might claim that "consideration" is necessary in contract formation, but what is the proof that this is so? Proof is necessary at a certain (lower) level, and unnecessary at a higher level (at the level where the audience comprehends the fundaments of law.

A person could, imaginably, pursue a policy of always downvoting an answer that fails to give adequate legal citations for their answers (one should therefore always upvote an adequately-supported answer). You can also try to persuade others to follow such a policy. Personally, I don't get involved in the myriad GDPR questions that we get because it's just totally off my experiential radar. Should we also pursue a policy of downvoting questions that cannot be given an answer with adequate textual support? Perhaps, but that's a matter of personal choice and not something that can be "enforced". One solution is to have a panel of certified experts, analogous to SCOTUS, who decide definitively that an "answer" is correct / wrong. That just isn't what Stackexchange is.



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Save this for "Very low quality (i.e. no amount of editing can salvage the post)" - if it can be fixed, fix it, don't flag it.

Note that we moderators will generally only act on this type of flag when the answer is egregiously bad - uncited answers in and of themselves don't reach this level.

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