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I've asked a question on SO and set a bounty of 50 rep. on it. Would it be possible to permit me to raise this bounty, if I see that it doesn't get enough attention?

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Good question. IMO - You should hold out for a better answer than AnonJr's. – Jim G. Oct 21 '09 at 17:41
Bounties should be raisable – Casebash Oct 23 '09 at 9:20
So then everyone will start their bounties at 50? – mmyers Nov 5 '09 at 17:37
Should have asked this earlier: Which question are we talking about? – AnonJr Nov 5 '09 at 18:55
@AnonJr: Why does it matter? – user183037 Sep 27 '11 at 5:25
@user183037: I'm sure I had a reason back in November 2009 - the exact reason escapes me here in Sept. 2011. Probably was related to the extreme dichotomy of bounty questions. The edge-case questions that it was designed to help; and the cheap, lazy questions where people substitute rep for effort in getting an answer. – AnonJr Sep 27 '11 at 19:15
@AnonJr: It was really rhetoric, the OP was asking a general question and my point was that it doesn't matter what question they set the bounty for, they just want to know if it's possible to raise the bounty they've set. But never mind, like you rightly pointed out, this is water under the bridge. – user183037 Sep 27 '11 at 20:06
up vote 3 down vote accepted

You can now open another bounty on your question -- at a higher value if necessary -- if the first bounty didn't get the results you wanted.

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For this to become available, you have to waste 6 days!!! Bounties should be raiseable immediately. – Shimmy Nov 20 '12 at 22:23
3 years later and I'm having the same issue now! – Shimmy Nov 20 '15 at 10:47
One year later and I'm still irritated about that :P – Arin Apr 14 at 15:06

I posted an answer elsewhere; but since it's to this question I'll extend the answer and repost it here.


To answer your question, no you can not change the bounty after offering it. Your options are to :

  • Keep modifying your question every day of the bounty with new things you've tried to keep it active
  • Allow it to run out; award the bounty and re-ask with new question

Also, I don't think your problem is solely the bounty you offered. You also offered it in a very much niche subject. However, the bounty system could use extension in cases like yours.

Feature Request

  • Allow asker increase the bounty after x days if they don't receive any new upvoted answers
  • Allow them to extend it for another 7 days for the same reason

New Feature Request

I also think that substantial edits to a question during its bounty period should reset the bounty and vote count for another 7 days.

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Have you considered that maybe its the question that needs some attention? It has been my experience that a lot of bounty questions don't get good answers (or answers at all) because they are worded poorly or are missing important information.

Sadly it seems the bounty system has become the "brute force" solution to getting answers, when there really needs to be some "re-factoring" instead... but that's another topic for another day where I haven't worked 3 12hr shifts.

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Woah. You worked 3 twelve hour shifts today? Impressive. – Thomas Owens Nov 5 '09 at 19:15
Obviously fatigue marred the wording. 3 days, working 12-hrs each day, does not lend itself to being the most coherent. Having said that, I still stand by what I said - I think the bounty system is being used as a replacement for asking a quality question, and this proposed enhancement would only make that worse. Sadly I still haven't had time to sit down and write a lengthy, well-reasoned response to that effect. – AnonJr Nov 5 '09 at 20:12
Maybe AnonJr has multiple CPUs. – Andrew Grimm Feb 19 '10 at 0:48

I suspect that user's who answer bounty questions may evaluate the difficulty of answering vs. the potential gain. In that circumstance, increasing the bounty may lead to more answers, but I suspect only in the case where the question doesn't already have existing answers. That is, if they've avoided answering the question due to its difficulty, increasing the bounty probably doesn't compensate for the risk associated with investing time into a question with lots of existing answers.

I think that increasing a bounty on a question with 2 or fewer answers or a question with no answers with upvotes may be reasonable, but it's unlikely to have an effect on questions with 3 or more answers, especially if any have upvotes. Given the way bounties work and the lack of attention for older questions, answering a difficult bounty question with many answers or upvoted answers carries more risk (time wasted) than reward.

Update: Given that it would only be of very limited use, I don't think it warrants any development time. If it can be shown that there are significant fraction of bounty questions with 2 or fewer answers or no upvoted answers, then I'd be willing to reconsider.

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You're saying why it might not be helpful in some situations, but that doesn't have much to do with whether it should or shouldn't be an option for people, if they choose to take the chance. – beska Nov 5 '09 at 18:26
Sorry - I should be more clear. It's probably not worth the development time unless the feature is limited to situations that would likely result in more answers. Adding features that don't work just to make someone feel good is not worth it. – tvanfosson Nov 5 '09 at 19:11
Gotcha. Makes sense. – beska Nov 5 '09 at 20:10
Well, we see just how well adding a bounty worked for this question... – AnonJr Nov 5 '09 at 20:14
It's got 9 times as many upvotes as any of my other questions, so I would say it worked all right. – luvieere Nov 5 '09 at 21:34
But was that because of the bounty or because this was a better worded question? – AnonJr Nov 5 '09 at 22:54
I'm more inclined to believe it was a more popular topic, that has some community support and the bounty offered it a plus in visibility. – luvieere Nov 6 '09 at 11:51

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