Is there a policy regarding this in biology.stackexchange.com?
Yes. The policy is quite clear. It is the general policy of Stack Exchange that appears in the question comment box of every Stack Exchange site:
Use comments to ask for more information or suggest improvements. Avoid answering questions in comments
Although individual Stack Exchange sites can make their own policy on certain things like what questions are on topic, or how many votes are needed to close a question, this is not one of them. If it were, there would be sites that did not have this message in the comment box.
Understanding the policy
This policy exists because breaking it would break the whole model underpinning Stack Exchange. It is worth re-reading the Tour where this is set out after the centred italicized statement:
We're a little bit different from other sites. Here's how:
The Stack Exchange model (voting, editing etc.) is devised to provide a set of high-quality answers to high-quality questions. It is not an answering service with dialogue between individuals whose knowledge and ability is taken on trust. As the Tour goes on to say:
This site is all about getting answers. It's not a discussion forum. There's no chit-chat.
And that is why each site has an extensive Help on writing good answers (not half answers).
For those who have the time it may be worthwhile watching a Google Tech Talk given by one of the founders of the original Stack Exchange — Stack Overflow — in which the model is expounded in more detail.
How the busy can help on SE Biology
I understand the poster’s desire to help people with questions when he is pressed for time. However breaking the Stack Exchange model is not the answer. Possibilities are:
- Wait and answer later when you have time if the question has not been answered. If it has, you are saved the bother (or can comment on an answer), if it has not, then if the poster really wants to know he will be grateful. If he is in a hurry, too bad. Other people’s deadlines are not our concern.
- Don’t answer. Is it really such a good question? As it says in the Help, [“Not all questions can or should be answered here.”] (https://biology.stackexchange.com/help/how-to-answer).
- If appropriate, point the poster to a suitable article that will help him to find the answer himself, suggesting he comes back with specific problems which you will look at when you find time. Often people don’t know how to search effectively.
I have not commented on the argument (if it is meant to be an argument): “This behavior of answering or partially answering in the comments is common in Stackoverflow”. My attitude to such behaviour should be apparent. Fortunately it is not common on SE Biology. My detailed arguments against the practice can be found in answer I gave to a question on this topic on SE English Language and Usage Meta.
Oh, and I would have answered earlier, but I was busy. I trust my answer was worth waiting for.