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Should the 24-hour timeout apply to bounties awarded for “exemplary answer”?

Imagine a situation where you want to reward an exceptionally good answer to a question, with an additional bonus bounty. Why don't we have the ability to specify which answer it is in the first place, so it'll get the bonus automatically at the expiration of the bounty?

The FAQ says

  • If you do not award your bounty within 7 days (plus the grace period), the highest voted answer created after the bounty started with at least 2 upvotes will be awarded half the bounty amount. If there's no answer meeting that criteria, the bounty is not awarded to anyone.

Question: Does that mean that if no new answers were created after the bounty was started, the bounty won't be automatically awarded to any of the pre-existing questions, and will go completely to waste?

I can see the reason for such behaviour for bounties which solicit new answers, but the whole reason for this bounty in the first place was to reward a pre-existing answer?!

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marked as duplicate by Bo Persson, yhw42, Toon Krijthe, Manishearth, jonsca Dec 9 '12 at 0:30

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

@BoPersson not a duplicate. I don't want to award it right away, like that question you linked to - I want to wait the most possible time before awarding the bounty (to give it a chance to attract even more up-votes, being bumped to "featured" section on a tag's page) and am worried what'd happen if I miss the grace period of just 24 hours. – Will Ness Dec 8 '12 at 18:13
But you want to be able to decide up front what answer should get the bounty. I don't see much of a difference. – Bo Persson Dec 8 '12 at 18:20

Having read through the FAQ again in combination with the Meta FAQ, I would say that the answer to your question is yes, the bounty would not be awarded in this situation.

I can see what you mean, however this is a really rare use case. Why, after having gone to the effort of adding a bounty to reward the answer, would you not come back to award it in the following seven days?

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Having a bounty bumps the question up to the "featured" section on the tag's page, so more people get to see it and have a chance to upvote it. This is just what happened with my current bounty in effect right now (just expired). So first I waited for the question to get more upvotes, under theory that it would get less attention once I've awarded the bounty. Now I have 24h to award it. What if I couldn't do it, by some unforeseen circumstance? Anyway, the two bounties are really different - one solicits new answers, another refers to the existing one. They're lumped together senselessly. – Will Ness Dec 8 '12 at 17:59

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