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Some weeks ago I've asked a question in this site and when I tried to mark an answer as accepted I noticed something odd: Both of the answers I got were quite helpful and I followed guidelines from both of them so I'm tempted to mark as accepted both answers, but I cannot!

This problem made me think about this site and I realized that it does not (and should not) work as other Stack Exchange sites:

Accepting answers.

Due to the type of questions that this site gathers, many times isn't appropiate to accept answers quickly: i.e.: an answer about a diet might take weeks or months to check if it worked... even more than a year if the user got different valid answers and tries all of them.

Also, the valid answer for a particular user might be a combination of two or more answers!

In other words: while in other sites the user can check if the answer was valid in a timespan of hours or days, in this site the user might need weeks, months or years to check the same. Also, unlike answers on other sites, in this site the answers can be partially valid or more than one different answer can be correct at the same time.

What should we do as users on those situations?

Duplicates.

The questions on this site are very person-focused, so even if two users ask the exact same question, the answers might be quite different depending on the user phisical condition, age, sex, health or other factors.

In other words: unlike other sites, two users asking the exact same question might need different answers. That's a pain for other visitors looking for information and also a pain for the colaborators trying to answer questions, is there a plan to address this issue?

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  • This site is pretty great in that way though. Helpful community of respectful people. Better than the other fitness oriented websites I’ve seen. – DeadMemer Sep 25 '18 at 12:47
  • A lot of the answers I put on questions that don't exactly fit the Q&A model of SE start with a Dan John-ism "Well, it depends..." followed by answering in generalities instead of giving specifics (mainly because of different in people meaning what works for one may not for another). I do agree though, I've often felt that Physical Fitness isn't a great fit for the SE Q&A style of doing things, exactly because answers can either take a long amount of time to verify, or the answer really does depend on different criteria that aren't easily defined. – Dark Hippo Nov 28 '18 at 9:42
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Stack Overflow does have a very specific model, which assumes there will be one best answer, even if there's more than one right answer. One option is to create a new best answer that incorporates the information for the right answers with proper attribution. Community Wikis are a good tool for this. As regards time to accept, we occasionally have the same problem on the SF&F wiki with story-identification where it may take weeks for someone to get ahold of a book, and to read it, to verify the answer.

As regards Duplicates, if the two questions are different enough to lead to different results, I can see where we wouldn't want to mark them as such. Generally, though, we've built up a fair number of "general" answers for things like losing weight and building muscle that cover all of the ground and, if they don't, can be modified to do so.

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