For a tricky puzzle, people can start sharing ideas in the comments, as they don't really have a valid 'answer' yet. This can become a big comment thread for the question. Since a puzzle and proposed solutions doesn't exactly fit the normal model of Q&A as per other SE sites, it could be that some slightly different rules to normal are needed. For example, generally on SE a 'wrong' answer should get down-voted, but on puzzling it might be wrong, but clever in a different way that the community likes and up-votes. Or an answer might be incomplete but helps someone else to get to the right answer, therefore useful and community might want to up-vote it.
My question is about one such type of answer, when you want to share ideas or partial solves... Is there, or should there be, a well-defined etiquette for starting to share ideas?
- The rule could be not to answer unless you actually have what you think is a valid complete answer. i.e. Only post ideas/thoughts in comments.
- Users could post some ideas in an 'answer' to get comments on those ideas, or help from others to edit and improve the answer, or simply to inspire others to keep going and get to the right answer.
- Maybe it would be polite to wait 5 days (or something) before starting to share ideas and group-solve a puzzle?
- It could be that different types of puzzle have different rules, expressed via tags, or simply by the OP explaining.
So what kind of conventions should we have? Is anything already defined for this?