I've noticed that some questions in the canonical answer list are CW and some are not.

Is there a reason for this distinction? Should all canonical Qs be CW? If not, what is the criteria for this?

  • I am not sure that there is a good reason for the way all the old question are they way they are. I know when I have composed questions like this in the past where the bulk of the content is links, or copied material, I generally choose CW. Some questions become CW because of the rules built-into the system that automatically make them so. (many edits/etc).
    – Zoredache
    Commented Feb 19, 2012 at 8:40

2 Answers 2


Hmm... as a general rule I think questions we create with the intention of making them canon should always be created as Community Wiki. We're creating them with the intention of throwing lots of votes on them and getting people to reference them (and probably upvote the question and answer(s) -- It seems wrong to me to gain huge amounts of rep from that.

Questions we discover and canonize I don't have strong feelings about, but I'm inclined to say they can stay in whatever state we found them (or whatever state the system puts them in as a result of any editing).
If it's a really good canonical question and has a really good canonical answer I think the users who wrote the question and answer respectively deserve the rep they'll gain. It further incentivizes writing really good questions applicable to a large segment of the System Administrator community.


I'm not sure what the rep rules are as of this moment with regard to converting a question to CW. But if the conversion either revokes existing, or otherwise stops additional rep for the questioner/answerers --

  • If the canonical question became canonical, spontaneously on its own accord, then no, I don't think it should be made CW.

  • If the canonical question was created explicitly to be the canonical question, then yes, I think it should be made CW.

  • This works for me.
    – user9517
    Commented Feb 17, 2012 at 21:53
  • 1
    This is pretty much what happened. If we made it for the purpose of getting a huge answer, it's not really fair to rep-game like that. Plus, that way everyone gets to have their input. Commented Feb 17, 2012 at 21:54

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