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I had a question where the bounty had expired and no one was awarded any points. Would it be worth to have some kind of silent bounty (by silent, I mean not show up on the publicity board) if the points go unawarded that they can still be given if someone in the future gives the answer?

I could only see that adding value to none answered questions as questions with bounties usually are harder in nature. If someone else runs into a really good question, they might come back to it if they eventually find the answer and update it here.

I had originally posted this as a comment here and a few people liked it: Will my bounty be awarded to an answer from 6 months ago?

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migrated from meta.serverfault.com Sep 29 '11 at 22:01

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The concept behind bounties is that they provide a motivation of sorts to answer questions.

Forking out the bounty means you get a big ad for your question and hopefully a better answer.

I have quite a few objections to the escrow system proposed.

  1. It is open to gaming. An answer can almost always be provided even if it is not excellent, and it would deprive you from the escrow. (you can change the requirement to 1 upvote on an answer but that also feels wrong)

  2. It does not provide any additional motivation to answeres :- Why would they choose to answer these questions? If you advertise this list anywhere you are providing an infinite bounty.

  3. It is very very complicated and full of rules.

  4. I love surprise rep as much as the other guy, but it feels to me that getting 500 rep out of the blue is wrong.

  5. It may require involvement from the bounty creator way after he stopped engaging in the site (how do you choose who gets the escrow)

  6. Technically we can not do it, there is no way to hide all traces that a bounty has an escrow due to stuff like http://data.stackexchange.com ... so we will have created an infinite bounty.

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