Meta Stack Exchange is where users like you discuss bugs, features, and support issues that affect the software powering all 157 Stack Exchange communities.

What is meta?
Here's how it works:
  1. Any Stack Exchange user can ask a question
  2. The community provides support, votes on ideas, and reports bugs
  3. Your voice helps shape the way Stack Exchange operates

I want to ask question that would solicit more than one acceptable answer. Can I do this? It's quite embarrassing to just keep the question opened but if I accept an answer, that would stop the question from getting better answers over time.

share|improve this question
What kind of question that would require more than one acceptable answer? Such question, if not narrow enough, will usually be not constructive. – nhahtdh Aug 21 '12 at 4:22
You don't need to rush to or even ever accept an answer. No reason for embarrassment. Don't feel bullied by anyone into accepting an answer. – 1202 Program Alarm Aug 21 '12 at 4:22
@nhahtdh I don't really like narrowing the question to the point where I wouldn't get any answers in the end. I simply want to have what possible answers there might be or I may not know what's the best solution. – supertonsky Aug 22 '12 at 3:04
up vote 4 down vote accepted

No one is going to stop you from hesitating to accept an answer. The choice is entirely yours, and you should wait until you get the answer that helps you the most. And if it never comes, it may or may not be a problem with the question (you would know if it was—downvotes and close votes are an indicator).

But in any case, I don't think it's necessarily possible for a question to warrant more than one accepted answer. There will almost always be more than one correct answer, but accepting is one-and-done; you pick the one that fits best in your situation.

And finally, to the last point: I definitely don't care if an answer has already been accepted unless my answer would have been identical. If I have useful information to add, I will post another answer, because the user can always accept a different answer. I'm sure many people do this.

share|improve this answer
There is plenty of room for questions with more than one viable answer that aren't polls. That's what we call "good subjective" - when there's a chance that there are different approaches to solving the same problem, all with their own pros and cons. – Adam Aug 21 '12 at 4:26
@AnnaLear: Definitely--I phrased a bit strangely before, but I've edited. – Mystery Aug 21 '12 at 4:30
I once accepted a different answer a year after accepting the first one. The answer I initially chose was a fine answer, it solved my problem and worked well. Then someone came along, read my question and posted something so awesome that I went back and modified code that had long since been deployed. Just goes to show, if you're looking for interesting questions to work on, don't just dig through the unanswered ones :) – Tim Post Aug 21 '12 at 4:35
@TimPost: That's exactly the gist of it. And personally, I think the best questions are ones that can be answered one, two, or even five years later. That kind of relevance and timelessness is hard to come by as of late, though. Quality has gone down over the years (which makes me wonder if high SEO is really valuable). – Mystery Aug 21 '12 at 4:43
@Purmou I'm not so sure if it's reasonable to expect the same level of quality that we started with going forward on such a massive scale. Our original group was made up of extremely seasoned, extremely articulate and extremely enthused people - so some 'dilution' of that highly concentrated mix is inevitable. We can definitely try, and we should, but the initial Shangri-La is now something that the old timers speak of when regaling newcomers in hopes that they do their best to follow suit. – Tim Post Aug 21 '12 at 4:52

You must log in to answer this question.

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