What does a great JL&U answer look like?

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3 Answers 3


Provides credible sources if necessary

  • For very difficult questions, the answerer probably has to do some research before answering. Linking to these credible sources will increase the credibility of the answer.
  • For answers that may be very surprising or unbelievable, it is probably best to provide a credible source so that the users do not think it it just your own crazy theory.

Formatting is one important but often underrated aspect, I think. I feel much more attracted to read and upvote well-written and well-structured answers than others. Some points:

  • Correct use of bold, italics, commas, etc.
  • The answer is correctly divided in paragraphs in order to avoid the huge-wall-answer.
  • Capitalization, capitalization, capitalization (answers starting with a lowercare letter, or the personal pronoun being written as "i").
  • No abuse of horizontal lines (sometimes I see people using them a lot, not good).
  • Correct use of Blockquote for quoting statements or pieces of text, and Code Sample for code or similar uses (linguistics interlinear glosses is one good example).
  • No abuse of the titles as a bad replacement for the bold.

(I think this is slightly different from what Alenanno meant with "correctly divided in paragraphs in order to avoid the huge-wall-answer", but if it is the same, I will gladly remove this answer)

Clear and concise

  • Does not go on for multiple paragraphs unless those paragraphs truly add a lot of value
  • Answer itself is obvious (you don't have to dig around for it)

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