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There is a question on Stack Overflow which suffered from offered bounty a lot.

In its normal state there was a passer-by with silly answer once a week, but with bounty attached it attracted them every day (these silly answers gets eventually deleted - so, you need enough SO rep to see them).

Is there a way to take a pointless bounty out? And also, is there a way to raise a protection threshold to at least 100 points of reputation? This question is still of current importance. One "sympathy upvote" opens you door to any "protected" question but it doesn't prove your knowledge or experience at all.

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A lot? What do you mean by a lot? That's the first bounty that's ever been placed on the question... – animuson Jun 4 '13 at 6:10
It appears the user who started the bounty is now suspended (don't think it's related to the bounty) so most likely the bounty will just expire by itself tomorrow. No harm done. – Shadow Wizard Jun 4 '13 at 7:43
What is a "pointless bounty"? It's not your reputation, but another user's, so if he decided that the question was worth a bounty, who are we to question it? – Daniel Daranas Jun 4 '13 at 7:59

Did you bother to read the bounty description?

One or more of the answers is exemplary and worthy of an additional bounty

The user who started the bounty thought one of the existing answers is good enough so it deserves additional points and it's his full right to do so.

In theory yes, moderator can cancel active bounty and you can request such a thing by flagging the question and choosing "other" to explain but in this specific case the bounty should not be canceled.

Addressing other point in your question, getting attention to a question can't be a bad thing. Worst that can happen is more answers will be posted or making the question stick in the "hot questions" list. Both are not the end of the world.

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"getting attention to a question can't be a bad thing" - in my experience it ain't always so – gnat Jun 4 '13 at 8:23
@gnat fair point, still not so bad. – Shadow Wizard Jun 4 '13 at 8:31
stick in the "hot questions" list is only a symptom, a real decease is answers quality in hot questions. Watching good questions getting buried under piles of crap answers is probably most disgusting thing I ever observed at Stack Exchange. Not the end of the world yeah sure – gnat Jun 4 '13 at 21:46

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