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I posted this question, and it got 5 downvotes and a string of snarky negative comments. I am trying to delete it, but the system is preventing me from doing so on account of someone having already posted an answer to it, so I shouldn't be ruining their time and efforts.

The thing is, the person who answered is one of the people who left a negative comment, so he himself thinks the question isn't good for the community. If someone deems a question stupid or bad, then what would that put any effort into answering it? The fact that found it worth answering means that to some extent its a legitimate question.

Given that, I think I should be able to delete it. All the downvotes and negative comments presumably mean that it isn't helpful or informative - so I would rather just delete it.

Can someone help me with this?

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    and look at that... within 3 hours it is a net +3. Don't be too hasty in your decisions to delete content. Also posts with a low net score may get deleted anyway in the review queue or by 10k+ rep users – Skooba Jul 11 '17 at 19:50
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You can ask a Community Manager to "disassociate" a question from your account by clicking the Contact Us button below.

Not every question can be a winner and if you don't like it, you can ask for it to be orphaned.

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Main meta has a lot of guidance on when to delete a question. For example:

For questions, a post that no longer adds anything to the site should be deleted.

answer to How does deleting work? What can cause a post to be deleted, and what does that actually mean? What are the criteria for deletion? FAQ

Your question is on topic and has received some upvotes so it adds something to the site. It also has an upvoted answer, which adds to the site and is why the system doesn't allow you to delete it:

Users can delete their own questions if the question:

  • has zero answers
  • only one answer, but that answer has no upvotes

Help Center on deleted questions

Since the question adds to the site it should not be deleted.

If you're concerned about "ruining their time and efforts" then deleting the question is not going to help. The time and effort has already been put into it so deleting the question would actually hide that time and effort to everyone except high rep users and moderators.

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