What is meta? ×
Meta Stack Exchange is where users like you discuss bugs, features, and support issues that affect the software powering all 131 Stack Exchange communities.

I asked a question on SO that, with the help of others and my own tinkering, I was able to fix myself. When I "answered my own question," I was told I had to wait two days before accepting it.

This didn't make much sense to me since you only have to wait a few minutes to accept someone else's answer.

I read this: Why must I wait 2 days before accepting my own answer?

I noticed this in Jeff Atwood's answer:

Wait 48 hours. You must wait 2 days from the time you originally asked your question before you can accept your own answer. This gives other users a chance to answer the question in good faith, and earn the accepted answer.

I don't understand why I would want other users to continue to answer my question "in good faith," seemingly only to gain reputation, when I have already found the answer myself. Could someone please explain this?

share|improve this question

1 Answer 1

up vote 2 down vote accepted

I don't understand why I would want other users to continue to answer my question "in good faith," seemingly only to gain reputation, when I have already found the answer myself. Could someone please explain this?

Although you may have solved your problem, we want to give a fair chance to other people to provide a better answer, one that will benefit the wider community, not just you. It's not uncommon for later great answers to get more up votes than the accepted one, a sign that they were more helpful to more people. And I've seen one instance where the accepted answer was heavily down voted, while every other answer was up voted.

Accepting an answer means that one person, you, found it helpful. Stack Overflow, and Stack Exchange in general, is more tuned towards the community at large than any individual. Wait a couple of days, it's not that long a wait, especially if a great answer appears.

share|improve this answer
1  
While nothing that you said here is untrue, none of it explains the disparity between accepting an answer that is yours, or one that is not yours. 48 hours to accept someone else's answer on the premise that it might be better is really just a nag factor that's only there to spurn users to generate content (i.e. the gamification of the site). Let's not kid ourselves, this exists for no other purpose than to get others to generate content for Stack Exchange with the promise of 15 rep which can help bust the cap. There's no higher motive than that. –  casperOne Aug 3 '12 at 3:26
    
@casperOne Perhaps true for Stack Overflow, but not for other, more subjective, Stack Exchange sites I frequent, where it's quite common for better and more thorough answers to appear after an answer was accepted - case in point. –  Yannis Aug 3 '12 at 8:54

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .