I have become interested in composing a question about refusals that cite the insufficient funds / lack of funds formulae. Then after that, providing an answer that could be used as a so-called 'canonical' answer. And once that's done, then marking future questions as a duplicate.

I think doing that is an interesting project! I estimate that about 5 canonical answers could clear the board on TSO and just leave the really interesting ones to deal with. Schengen is addressable in the same way (but not with the same answers). Up to now I have been discouraged that some answers that might qualify as 'canonical' have never been accepted, and for others there's a digression into a nitpick or corner case that makes the answer too specific.

Proposed steps...

  1. Compose the question.
  2. Wait until it becomes bounty eligible (2 days).
  3. Put a bounty on it.
  4. Wait until the bounty is awarded to a respondent and accept it.
  5. If the bounty expires, put in a 'canonical' answer and accept it.
  6. Thereafter mark everything in that category as a duplicate
  7. Set the answer to 'wiki' if it's got community interest
  8. If it works, go on to the next refusal category that can be answered canonically

Issue... There will always be some little nitpick or corner case that does not get addressed in a canonical answer. I reckon that you could cover about 90% of the person's question, but there's no chance of getting a person's question 100% answered all the time unless you compose a new answer.

Somebody's uncle in the UK provided the funds, but somebody else's father in India is providing a letter of funding support, but somebody else didn't provide their bank statements, but somebody else got caught for 'funds parking', and the list goes on. They are all about 90% the same. When there's a funds issue, the ECO will normally add another reason or so about something else, but these are just icing on the cake and serve no purpose other than filler to make the refusal look weighty.

How canonical should a question/answer be before it is accepted by the community? If a question can be dis-assembled to some fundamental issues and there's a few nitpick side issues or corner cases, and there's an existing reference that goes 90% (or even 80%!) of the way, is it "canonical enough"?

Otherwise every refusal on the funds formulae has to have a separate answer.

  • 1
    And who are the 2 viewers that appeared in the first second after submitting the question? Are two people sitting in META pressing 'refresh' all the time? Or some sort of automatic viewer in the background? Or a bug?
    – Gayot Fow
    Commented May 20, 2015 at 14:03
  • one of these views is probably yourself. The second might be someone randomly around at that time.
    – Vince
    Commented May 21, 2015 at 1:10
  • 1
    T'was probably me.
    – JoErNanO Mod
    Commented Jun 3, 2015 at 21:06
  • How much can you add at a later time to your canonical answer? I mean, if an other situation comes up, can you adjust and still use the canonical as 'the other is a duplicate'?
    – Willeke Mod
    Commented Jul 12, 2015 at 15:16
  • @Willeke, once it becomes community owned, anybody can update it
    – Gayot Fow
    Commented Jul 12, 2015 at 15:19
  • 2
    In that case, cover all you can think about and 'we' can always add in what you forgot.
    – Willeke Mod
    Commented Jul 12, 2015 at 15:20

1 Answer 1


IMHO the answer should be as canonical as it can be with the information currently at hand. Let's say that for arguments sake you write and post an answer covering 90% of the cases. When new information comes, being a community wiki answer it will be editable and updatable by others so as to improve it's canonicity over time. All in all my rationale is based on the assumption that the initial post covers as many cases as possible, in order to avoid having several answers competing over canonicity. Should this happen however one can always merge the information of all the answers into one post, and ask the moderators to clean up the other posts.

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