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Originally I was going to post a question why hadn't I been awarded a bounty. I read the previous posts, but they were a little old and seems to be out-of-date with current guidelines on the FAQ, but then I read the privilege page and got confused. Can someone clarify please?

The timeline

  • OP asks question
  • I post answer
  • OP wants more info and starts bounty
  • I significantly edit answer multiple times to account for repeated new requests from OP
  • Answer gains > 2 upvotes during bounty period
  • OP accepts answer during the bounty period but does not award bounty
  • Bounty ends without being awarded

OK, so if I click on the bounty FAQ link that appears below every question with a bounty I see

If the bounty was started by the question owner, and the question owner accepts an answer during the bounty period, and the bounty expires without an explicit award – we assume the bounty owner liked the answer they accepted and award it the full bounty amount at the time of bounty expiration.

But on the privileges page about setting bounties I see that the rules for bounty awards are as follows:

If you do not award the bounty within 24 hours of the bounty period ending, half the bounty value will be automatically awarded to the top voted answer posted after the bounty start, provided it has a score of at least 2. If no new answer matches this requirement, no reputation will be awarded at all, and the reputation used on the bounty will be lost forever.

OK, so according to this definition my answer doesn't meet the criteria, because I provided an initial answer to a somewhat different original question before the bounty was started. But according to the FAQ guide because the owner accepted my answer during the bounty period but did not award the bounty the assumption was the question owner liked my answer and the bounty should have been awarded.

I'm going to assume the site worked as expected and followed the documented rules regarding awarding bounties, but there seems to be some ambiguity in the documentation, which was frustrating for me as I expected get awarded the bounty. Can this be clarified please?

share|improve this question
    
The FAQ guide that you linked doesn't say what you say it says. It 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. –  Robert Harvey May 22 '13 at 15:46
2  
@RobertHarvey The last bullet point is: If the bounty was started by the question owner, and the question owner accepts an answer during the bounty period, and the bounty expires without an explicit award – we assume the bounty owner liked the answer they accepted and award it the full bounty amount at the time of bounty expiration. As far as I can tell, all of those criteria were met. –  Servy May 22 '13 at 15:48
    
@RobertHarvey there is section in the FAQ called There are a few other rules around bounties: which is different from the privilleges page which has the information I posted under the section When does a bounty expire?. Agreed?! –  Simon O'Hanlon May 22 '13 at 15:49
    
@RobertHarvey I also addressed your highlighted point in my question - the information seems ambiguous which is why I posted this question asking for some clarification. Thanks. –  Simon O'Hanlon May 22 '13 at 15:50
1  
Yeah, that is confusing. –  Robert Harvey May 22 '13 at 15:51
    
Also from the bounty FAQ here: If the bounty starter accepted an answer during the bounty period, that answer is awarded the bounty. That's the first item in the "automatic award" section. –  Mat May 22 '13 at 15:51
    
@Servy: OK, but the answer was created before the bounty was started, and it clearly states that such an answer doesn't qualify for the bounty in any case, so... I do agree that it is confusing, though. –  Robert Harvey May 22 '13 at 15:53
1  
@RobertHarvey The bullet that I quoted says nothing about the answer being posed during the bounty period. The fact that it says and the bounty expires without an explicit award implies that the bullet's logic is only applied if all other criteria fail, meaning it wouldn't need to meet any aspects of the other criteria. –  Servy May 22 '13 at 15:56
    
@Servy: I think you can safely assume that it still has to be a qualifying answer. But. Yes. I. Do. Agree. That. It. Is. Confusing. –  Robert Harvey May 22 '13 at 15:56
    
@Servy this is why I am confused!! –  Simon O'Hanlon May 22 '13 at 15:57
    
@SimonO101: You managed to figure it out though, didn't you? –  Robert Harvey May 22 '13 at 15:57
    
@RobertHarvey but I don't know that the site didn't work as expected. My tag scores were updated for about a week at the start of the month. It's not inconceivable that something did break. I made an assumption that the site worked as expected, but I sought clarification. I think you can agree that a very minor amendment to the documentation could clear things up though. –  Simon O'Hanlon May 22 '13 at 16:02
    
Yes, I do agree. –  Robert Harvey May 22 '13 at 16:08

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