It is impossible to vote to close a question once a bounty has been added to it. If the question has existing close votes when the bounty is added, they are usually doomed to expire while the bounty is active.

Ideally, one of the voters would flag a moderator, but people are more reluctant to flag than to vote, and this requires that they somehow notice the question has been bountied. Sometimes, moderators don't notice the bounty, and just decline the flag thinking their intervention isn't required.

I suggest that close votes not expire on bountied questions.

  • 5
    This sounds like a good idea. I'm sure there's a good reason that close votes can't be cast on a question with a bounty, but I know I've seen questions with bounties that seemed like slam-dunk close vote candidates. I've wondered, when I see this, if the person issuing the bounty realizes that the reason the question wasn't getting attention was because it was off-topic, or not a quality question to begin with. I suppose in egregious cases, a flag would be appropriate. Commented Jan 30, 2012 at 12:11
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    Related/shameless plug: Allow users to vote to close bountied questions
    – user149432
    Commented Jul 19, 2012 at 20:20
  • 3
    Darn, there's a bounty on this question so I can't vote to close it. :) Of course, I can't vote to close in the first place but that's neither here nor there.
    – Yawus
    Commented Jul 20, 2012 at 17:37

2 Answers 2


Ideally, one of the voters would flag a moderator, but people are more reluctant to flag than to vote, and this requires that they somehow notice the question has been bountied.

Once a bounty has been offered on a question, if that question needs to be closed then a moderator needs to be involved.

Remember: closing is a nomination for deletion if the post is not edited to fix its issues. Saying, "Oh, no need to involve a moderator; if close votes don't expire, I'll just sit on my hands until the bounty is done and then close -> delete it" is effectively saying,

"I'm fine with someone putting serious effort into answering this question out of hope for a bounty reward, because I plan to delete the question and their answer, thus erasing both their effort and the reputation involved."

Don't do that. Contact a moderator - if the question must be closed or migrated, they can immediately cancel the bounty, removing the question from the Featured list and enabling others to close the question. If you're worried that the moderator reviewing your flag will not check for a bounty and just decline the flag thinking it doesn't require their intervention, clearly state in your flag that the question has an open bounty that needs to be canceled. The longer you wait, the more potential for grief exists for everyone involved.

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    "Remember: closing is a nomination for deletion" Is that still the case? I thought "on hold" was added because closing is now a nomination for repairing a question. I'll grant you, once it's transitioned from "on hold" to "closed" then I suppose it's probably a good candidate for deletion. Commented Feb 11, 2016 at 17:59
  • Which happens in 5 days, so... I'm all for saving posts that are so-nominated, but you still shouldn't assume they're gonna be kept around indefinitely if you DON'T try to save them, @PreferenceBean.
    – Shog9
    Commented Feb 11, 2016 at 19:26

I had an issue with this last week. I have created a question on SO: https://stackoverflow.com/questions/11583028/boobs-operator-in-c-c-code-is-it-possible (deleted at the moment) which evoked a squall of successive close votes and then reopen votes for several times (and even deleted and undeleted). Moderators spent some time dealing with that question (sorry, I didn't want that). After the question was undeleted I put a bounty on it to draw users attention again, but people started complaining that it was impossible anymore to cast a close vote on it.

I think this is not a good situation (that question could be considered sexist by some individuals) and some instrument should be provided to close that kind of questions by the community (and reopen, of course).

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