I was looking for questions about medical issues and job interviews in Australia.

This question turned up in a search: Unemployed with health issues last 9 years, how do I present myself in best light for volunteer then paid work?

The question is tagged [Australia] and the duplicate takes place in the USA.

It appears that both countries have laws in place that prevent the interviewer from asking any question to a candidate about anything medical.

The answers provide good general advice that seems to apply regardless of any local laws. However, it got me wondering, should questions that differ only by the country tag be marked as duplicates?

2 Answers 2


The post was reopened since this answer was written.


As long as the answers aren't different between the two countries, then they are duplicates. There is no need to distinguish between two locations in which the answers are the same.

If a third person asks from yet another location, and the local laws vary enough to change the answers, then it would not be a duplicate.

If people tried (or succeeded,) to close the question then you would need to argue why it isn't a duplicate to keep it open/ reopen. This would be easy if the location changes the answer.

There is no need for a blanket rule here. We should mark the questions duplicate if the answers are the same.

Please note, that while we search by question and not by answer, the questions are ostensibly the same. If a user stumbles upon a question and feels their locale may change the answer, but it doesn't, then we should upvote the new question and mark it as duplicate. It is a good question and will help new users find the answer they need.



We search by question, not answer

People generally search for questions that may have the answer[s] they're looking for.

When you type stuff into the search box (or click a tag), what do you get? Questions. You get a list question titles and a blurb from the question body. If one of the questions doesn't quite seem like what you're looking for, even if it has the answer you need, it's going to get looked over.

I am not sure how the searching function works, but I suspect that questions marked as dupes get suppressed by some factor that favors what somebody thought was the "original" question. So, stuff gets missed on site search (and caught on a web search).

Similarly, when you create a question, you get a list of "related" questions that may or may not be "duplicates" based on your question title. Again, if one of those has the answer you want but the suggested question seems different, you're going to miss that and just keep typing your "new" question.

I just don't understand the urge that many people here have to categorize things as "the same" or duplicated when there are clearly nuanced differences. Instead of crudely marking something as "a dupe", why not have some way of marking it as "related" so that if somebody comes across a question, they can easily toggle to related questions that may be a better fit.

Words matter. "Dupe" suggests something unnecessary. Yet, they still exist on the site, people read them. People even take the time to answer them (before they're locked out of answering them). I understand there may be editorial reasons for some questions to get marked as duplicates, that is more likely to happen with simple questions which aren't very interesting. On workplace, however, we tend to get complex questions that describe complex situations and stimulate complex, faceted answers. It seems ham-fisted to me how such questions can get marked as dupe. It doesn't seem to solve a problem other than some peoples' need to categorize things with smug rigidity.

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