This is about the question How can I politely get my friends to pay their share when I invite them to dinner?

In short: The OP migrated to France and whenever he "invites" friends to go out for a drink, they let him pay the bill.

First version

The original question contained four different questions, including the title:

  • How to handle friends who never invite? (title)
  • What should I do?
  • Am I being taken advantage of (which will disappoint me)?
  • Am I overreacting?

The question was closed for the reason unclear what you're asking.

Second version

The question was edited and finally reopened. It contains now only one question:

  • How can I politely get my friends to pay their share when I invite them to dinner? (title)
  • How can I get them to pay their share?


I agree that the curent version fits IPS.SE much better than before. However, I'm still curious as to how to deal with this question. The reason is that the OP seemingly didn't log in again after asking the question. Consequently, none of the questions asking for clarification in comments were answered. Details are still lacking, e. g. that's why I used the scare quotes above around invites.

This also means that the OP didn't edit the question to fit the site. From their orginal post, it's not clear to me what their actual question, what their actual goal is. So I'm not sure that the question as it is now, asks what the the OP wants to be answered.

  • Are they not sure about whether these are friends, at all? In this case, just making them pay their share may fall too short.
  • Are they just asking about the general culture, in this case in France? We would need to know how the OP invited them, how they communicated these invitations, to answer that question.

How do we handle this question?

Some things I wonder about: Should we edit questions this way? Is the question now suitable for IPS, or is the lack of detail still too grave?

Here is a link to a relevant meta post: Should we edit to make a question on-topic if we believe the author won't care/won't come back?

  • The edit only changed the title, and removed some of the questions in the body. But no details were added, like what was asked for in the comments. I cast another close-vote
    – Tinkeringbell Mod
    Commented Dec 10, 2017 at 16:27
  • When the other member edited to change the title, I think OP's real question got distorted: he is asking what to do about friends who accept his invitations but never invite in their turn, [how to deal with friends who do not reciprocate an invitation, I think] not 'how to get my friends to share the bill' as (mis)interpreted by the editor. That subtle or usubtle difference means the answer and comments have been unknowingly addressing a question different from what was asked by OP. Commented Dec 10, 2017 at 21:32
  • NotThatGuy made a bad edit and it should be reverted. I'd say the answer below is enough community support to do so, could you go ahead @Anne? (I don't have enough rep to rollback yet.) Commented Dec 11, 2017 at 8:04

1 Answer 1


How do we handle this question?

I think that in cases like this the question should be rolled back, re-closed and then potentially made into a new, IPS question.

In the relevant post you linked us, there were plenty of examples as to why we should not edit some questions to make them on-topic and this exhibits almost all of those reasons.

Edits should respect the original author's intent (no guessing)

The edited question brought in a whole new focus (getting them to pay) which while it may be a good question, is clearly not the intended one.

Edits should not invalidate existing answers

The answer was detailed enough to cover everything including pay. But it is clear that the main focus was on the original question, and changing it has made this answer to an extent, less applicable.

even if abandoned questions are edited to fit the site, no answer can be accepted.

This was added as a side note, but it especially applies if we suspect OP is not returning. Better to make a new question so that OP's original intent is not altered, and any proper IPS answers can be accepted.

Should we edit questions this way?

Based off the relevant meta post, it is quite clear we should not. Any arguments otherwise would be better placed there rather than here.

Was the new question even suitable?

There is plenty of reason for and against it being suitable, it is not the Mozart of questions but it has been improved. However, it isn't really for me to decide, it is still open to being flagged based of everyone's individual judgement and since it should be rolled back anyway it is not too much of an issue.


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