Information from new works should be used to answer old questions
Normally this is where I would discuss why I think that's true, but I'm at a loss for what to write; it seems so completely obvious to me, and is what we've been doing on this site since basically forever. Even in the Harry Potter canon, a bunch of old questions get new (or updated) answers every time a new thing is put on Pottermore; I've done it myself.
I'm strongly opposed to your suggestion that new questions be asked for the new information in newer sources, for a few reasons:
It stratifies the canon in a way I'm not comfortable with (in most cases). There's little intuitive reason why a question like "Why is X a thing in Harry Potter" and "Why is X a thing in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child" should have different answers1; Cursed Child is official canon, on the same level as Pottermore or the original seven novels.
Assuming we didn't immediately close one of those questions as a dupe of the other (something I'll get to in a moment), having them as separate questions implicitly sends the message "this book is more or less canon than other books." Sending that message seems disingenuous to me.
Now we have an answer in two places. This is less true of cases where the new work provides a heretofore unknown answer to a question, but very strongly applies to cases where the new work provides additional support (or additional discussion, e.g. if it contradicts previous canon) to an existing answer.
One of the things we seem to have largely settled on as a community (though certainly not unanimously) is that it's better to have the answers in one place than in multiple places. The all-time great example is How is canonicity of derivative works determined for Star Wars?, which has been the target of more than 50 dupes. Unless we immediately close one question as a dupe of the other, having two questions asking the same thing seems the opposite of this. And if we do immediately close one of them, what was the point in asking it? I'm not necessarily opposed to duplicate questions as a rule but if the choice is between updating an answer to an existing question (or posting a new answer) or asking and self-answering with the new information, then why bother?
Should information from new canon sources be spoilerified?
This is one of my pet peeves, so I apologize in advance if I get curt. I promise I'll try to stay civil. There are two points here:
Yes, information from new sources should be spoilerified. This is just being courteous to readers, reviewers, and moderators alike. Be kind, spoilerify. If you come across information that hasn't been spoilerified, then we have provided a handy mechanism for you to fix the problem with: the little "edit" link at the bottom of the post. Nothing is stopping you from using it.
All I would ask is that you bear in mind:
- Not every detail is a spoiler. For the Cursed Child example, the fact that there is a character named Delphini Diggory is not a spoiler. Some of the things we learn about that character, however, are
- Ideally questions and answers should be understandable (to some degree) without having to look at the spoilerified content
- In general, we give people a lot of sovereignty over their posts. So be graceful if your edit gets rejected or rolled back.
Ultimately, it's your responsibility to avoid spoilers. This is where things might get dicey for me. Deep breath, and here we go.
Everybody has a different level of toleration for spoilers. Personally, for most things I don't care; some people don't want to hear any details about anything even remotely related to the work in question. Both of those are fine, but it's unreasonable to expect everyone to conform to your level of spoiler toleration. On this site we encourage the use of spoiler markup as a courtesy, but no level of spoilerification will please everyone.
With spoiler tolerance being so personal, ultimate responsibility for avoiding spoilers must be equally personal. There's only so much we can do with spoiler markup.
1 That being said, there may be times when that's appropriate; if you were asking about perceived inconsistencies in the play, for example. As always, a certain amount of case-by-case evaluation is needed