What do you do when you want to ask a question, but find an exact duplicate that doesn't actually have a useful answer? This has happened to me multiple times in the past, so I figure it probably happens to others as well and is therefore worthy of discussion.
To give a recent example: I wanted to find an answer of mine that I'd deleted on SO, so I searched meta to see if this was possible. I found that someone had asked the same question in July last year, but it doesn't have any (real/useful) answers. Now, in this case the real "answer" is probably just "you can't", but it's also entirely possible that things have changed since the question was asked.
So, how do I go about getting an answer to my question?
A few obvious options are (with associated problems):
- Bump the old question by editing it (or its tags)
- not possible for low rep users
- creates revision noise
- Bump the old question by adding an answer
- creates unnecessary noise
- Just ask the duplicate question
- more noise
- duplicate will probably just be closed anyway
- This suggestion to create bounties on other people's questions
- been [status-planned] since July, so may never actually be possible
- your question may not be so burning that you want to create a bounty (especially for a low rep user), but that doesn't mean the question has no value
& of course I'm sure someone will close this as a duplicate of an old, stale, unanswered question just for the beautiful irony (I did search, but didn't find anything).