This question: Long-lasting price-worthy fenders?

  • The title: "Long-lasting price-worthy fenders?"
  • The key question: "So which fenders are long-lasting price-worthy?"

It's interesting in how the "accepted answer" did not actually address the question. On the question, there are answers referring to brands of fenders with decent lifespans and prices; which seem to actually answer the question as presented. The strongest votes were for "Planet Bike" and "SKS". Maybe I'm goofy, but seems like the poster just decided to ignore their own question?

However, the accepted answer seems to relate more to "repairing" existing fenders, as opposed to seeking fender recommendations with a decent lifespan/cost.

This is just one example of where the accepted answer makes rather significant departures from the original question.

  • 2
    Occasionally the question too is edited, until even the question makes rather significant departures from the original question.
    – ChrisW
    Commented Feb 23, 2011 at 4:05
  • @ChrisW: +1 Practical problems can have indifferent solutions. Buying new was of limited use in this problem shown with the orig label stingy. After the rain of buy-buy-new, partly due to my descriptive wording in the question, some users noticed the weakest link: "what about if the op is not 100% sure about his/her problem?" Moz was the first one to notice the weakness in my story-telling and pointed out "What about if you right this 2USD alt?" Your obs "significant departures from the original question" is misleading, tolerance is good. Please, see the summary.
    – user652
    Commented Feb 24, 2011 at 4:25
  • thank you for your question, it made me aware of this unfair question-acceptance. I tried to be as fair as possible in my current affair: creating a neutral summary covering up-voted answers. Now, the indifference should be easier to visualize. This problem is like finding a good programmer that must know the best tool for each specific problem. One solution solution, like money or Perl, won't solve all problems -- in contrast, they may complicate things. I hope my question made this 100% clear. Long-lasting price-worthy fenders also require a quite amount of work besides $.
    – user652
    Commented Feb 24, 2011 at 4:34

2 Answers 2


The philosophy is this:


Thus, when it comes to shopping questions, don’t ask us what you should buy — ask us what you need to learn to tell what you should buy.

In other words, "teach me what makes bicycle fenders reliable and long lasting."

  • Amen. That is really the purpose of all of us being here, right? To learn more about our sport and the things that make it better, more fun, or more convenient?
    – zenbike
    Commented Jun 21, 2011 at 16:49

IMO it's OK if the OP accepts whichever answer is most useful to the OP.

If (but only if) the question clearly described the OP's need/problem, this answer will usually also be whichever answer best answered the question.

Sometimes people ask the wrong question (e.g. they phrase their question around an incorrect assumption about how to solve their problem):

  • Q: "How do I ...?"
  • A: "Actually, you don't need to: ..." (or, "You can't: ...")

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