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I have been trying to answer some old questions that don't seem to have much attention, but the owner of the question has not accepted an answer (even though I think it is a very complete answer and it is the only answer available).

Is there a way to ping the owner of the question to get the answer reviewed?

Thanks.

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7  
They do get notified. –  agf Oct 22 '11 at 22:05
1  
Got it. So I guess they are plainly ignoring them. They did not see the notification, or they don't add any comment saying why the answer is incomplete or even if it is the right answer... Do users get a penalty in rep for keeping unaccepted questions? They should be encouraged to close them if there is an answer... Anyway... Just wondering. –  agarcian Oct 22 '11 at 22:08
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@agarcian There's not really a penalty, but accepting answers means a higher accept rate and gives you +2 rep. Also, accepting an answer != closing the question. –  lunboks Oct 22 '11 at 22:15
    
Thanks for the info... Just getting to know SO... and loving it, btw. –  agarcian Oct 22 '11 at 22:17

3 Answers 3

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Question owners already get notified of new answers, as an inbox notification.

They'll be made aware of your answer when they next visit any StackExchange they have an account on, or when they next check their e-mail (if they subscribed to their inbox).

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2  
Thanks. I wonder why people would leave their questions unaccepted or uncommented. They are probably casual users... I see the importance to see the acceptance rate in the user profile... –  agarcian Oct 22 '11 at 22:11

You can check when the user has last visited by looking at their profile. For example, your profile appears to me as: :

enter image description here

Note the orange "18 mins ago" text.

If this is more recent than your last post, then you can assume that their StackExchange™ SuperCollider MultiDropdown™ inbox turned red and indicated that they had:

  • comment[s] to a post of theirs or in reply of a comment of theirs.
  • answer[s] to a question of theirs.
  • chat mention[s] from a channel since you last opened the inbox which you haven't dismissed from the chat already.

You don't have a lot of answers where either your answer or another hasn't been accepted, so I'll go through and identify each one:

  1. How to read contents of specific page from PDF using itextsharp APIs User last visited September 2, 2010. Your answer does seem quite effective. I thought it was so good, I upvoted it!

This is probably the one you were talking about. The only thing the OP ever did was to ask this question and get one upvote. You'll probably never get an accepted answer here, but that's OK. The goal is to Answer the technical question. No one should care who asked it or why.

Your other answers are:

  1. mongo as a main db for a complex project
    User last visited 45 hours after you posted.
    Your answer doesn't seem to be quite what they're looking for, so they might be still waiting, but a comment requesting further explanation hasn't received a reply.
  2. mongo as a main db for a complex project
    User last visited 53 hours ago.
    No idea what happened here.
  3. Dealing with schema changes in MongoDB
    User last visited...42 seconds ago. Has 12k, 85% accept rate.
    This person knows the ropes. You might consider improving your answer (for instance, answering both of their related questions if you know the answer to the first one), but they're probably just waiting.

Whether these users:

  • didn't notice the notification at all
  • simply ignored it
  • opened it and lost your answer in the flood (and didn't visit the responses tab of their profile to find it later)
  • opened it when it first appeared with the intent to return and work with it later
  • saw your post and didn't want to upvote or accept it
  • don't know how to clarify it but still want to wait for more and better answers

is not knowable. And really, you shouldn't worry about it. You've done your best to answer the question, the community will vote you up if they like your answers, so it really doesn't matter much if the OP accepts an answer.

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Kevin, Thanks a lot. That was very thorough... You are right, it is not a big deal. And I am enjoying SO a lot because of the use and of the fun of helping other people, and learning in the way... –  agarcian Oct 22 '11 at 23:18

You may want to check the activity of the user before answering such old questions, in at least one of your answers, the person asking the question hasn't logged in in more than a year, while he will get notified if he ever does log in....

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I didn't even think about looking at how old the post was... Thanks for that valuable tip... I am trying to build a bit of reputation with well thought answers, (and of course with questions), because I think it is a good think SO is a respected source, therefore being associated to it with good reputation is probably worth it. Thanks again for the tip. –  agarcian Oct 22 '11 at 22:23

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