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There are a few situations I've been in where I've engaged in a question, the author adds info/ actively engages with the community trying to solve their problem, I've answered it or commented/edited others answers, and then... nothing.

A few background points:

  • I'm not talking about low-rep/one-time users who get what they need and leave. By checking the users profile I can see that she/he is still active.
  • The author has an ok accept rate 70-100%) so they're not the type to just ignore it once they have the answer.
    • Sometimes the author is more active in one site than another (one particular instance the user has 0% accept rate on one site (and around 300 rep) as opposed to 60-80% accept rate and >3000 rep on another) - The question being asked on the 0% site)
  • The author has been online since the question was last active (e.g. Online, 1 day ago, Question active, 9 days ago)
  • The question itself has answers (and as I mentioned the author even commented on them for clarification a few times)

I realise that the author gets a notification a while after the question has been asked (about a month I think? don't quote me) that generally reminds them to accept an answer, but this is impersonal and easily ignored. They might even get the impression that nothing has changed on the post since the last time they looked at it.

So what I would like to ask is:

  • Is it good etiquette to try and re-engage with the author?
  • What is the minimum sort of time frame should I leave the question alone before asking?
  • What would be the maximum (if any) amount of time you would wait to try to re-engage? (again, the author is still active)

I'm thinking of posting something like this in the comments of the question:

Hey < user >, did any of the answers below help you? is there anything I (or anyone else) can clarify further? If nothing has worked so far, do you have any more info you could share that might help?

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There could be a KICK (read ping!) option, which will get enabled after some specified number of comments/votes/answers, if the user has neither commented/edited/accepted anything for some time. So those who have answered, could actually kick him to come and see what has been going on while he has been ignoring to come see the answers or just not plain interested, giving him a popup or something on this page :-) –  Amit Tomar Aug 9 '12 at 5:33
    
@AmitTomar I don't mind that idea, and it does have its merits, but I'd prefer to comment if possible, as I feel it is more personal. A ping could just as easily be ignored as the once-a-month message. If such a feature did make it in, I'd like the option to write a custom comment alongside the ping- if that makes sense –  Robotnik Aug 9 '12 at 5:41

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