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When editing posts on StackOverflow, the following message appears:

We welcome all constructive edits, but please make them substantial. Avoid trivial, tiny one-letter edits unless absolutely necessary.

How does that advice apply to Spanish.SE? Are small (even one-character) edits to fix grammar, spelling, or punctuation recommended? Or should they be avoided to stop lots of cleanup from forcing questions or answers into Community Wiki mode (or for other reasons)?

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Jeff and I disagree on this point. Jeff states:

Is the post otherwise so perfect that it cannot be improved in any other way?

Somehow, I doubt that. :)

I find there are many cases where the answer is simply "Yes. The post is otherwise perfect."

Possible solutions:

  1. Wait until you can do unapproved edits. Then the 6-character minimum edit no longer applies.

  2. Edit something else, even though it's not wrong. sigh It's stupid that this is necessary, but I find myself doing it occasionally. Just be sure not to change the meaning of the post.

  3. Comment on the post for the OP or someone with more rep to do the typo-correction for you.


Now, for whether small edits should be encouraged; IMO, on a site about linguistics, typos are more important than they are on, say, StackOverflow. For this reason, I encourage anyone to edit my typos and spelling errors, and add accent marks where I forgot them.

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    I agree with you wholeheartedly. (However, I think single-character typos are pretty important on StackOverflow too.) – Jon Ericson Jan 7 '12 at 0:02
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    I agree. I hate making pretend improvements to reach the 6-character maximum and never do it. When it comes down to this I always choose to leave a comment instead. – hippietrail Jan 9 '12 at 8:59
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@Flimzy's and Jeff's answers are fair enough, what I think the problem resides in is that people without enough reputation to make small edits without approval are still presented with the message ... unless absolutely necessary giving them the illusion that they still can make that minor edits if just they can play the absolutely necessary card, but that's not possible at all. It's just misleading.

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    A fair point. It might be worth bringing up over on meta.SO as a bug report. Maybe they'll change the wording to be less misleading. – Flimzy Jan 3 '12 at 23:12
  • Or just bring it up as a bug report on meta here. The SE people always say they monitor all metas and meta.SO is infested with hostile trolls ready to stomp all over innocent newcomers (-: – hippietrail Jan 9 '12 at 8:57

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