As stated in the question "Does the number of views on an SO question exclude my own views?" the views of the question asker are included in the view count of a question.

I think it would be a good idea to exclude those views. Especially for rarely visited questions this creates a bias in the count. This way the view count would be a stronger indicator for interest in a question.

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    It's one view. We already have a crazy conservative view counter. – Ben Brocka Jul 27 '12 at 16:55
  • The information on the other question is wrong or outdated. I just visited an old question of mine to confirm. The view counter doesn't increase. – Dennis Jul 27 '12 at 16:56
  • @Dennis are you sure? My experience is that it counts... – Scolytus Jul 27 '12 at 16:57
  • How can you be sure nobody else viewed your question in the meantime? – Dennis Jul 27 '12 at 16:58
  • @Dennis: You should have viewed your old question the moment after your posted it. The system should have counted that one view, which is what's preventing you from going back to it now and counting it again. – BoltClock's a Unicorn Jul 27 '12 at 16:59
  • @BoltClock'saUnicorn: The accepted answer on Does the number of views on an SO question exclude my own views? says: If you refresh the page after a few minutes, you will see that the counter has increased. – Dennis Jul 27 '12 at 17:00
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    Unless, @Ben, it's really limited to counting one view per IP per 15 minutes, like Jeff commented in October 2010: "our view counts are very very strict -- more akin to visits as they are unique per IP per 15 minute interval". (Of course, maybe being logged in, or not, matters too for those 15 minutes.) – Arjan Jul 27 '12 at 17:01
  • @Arjan oh, so it's like...10 views, instead of 1. The concern would be if I could sit here and hold F5 and get a billion views; but that's a problem beyond the asker viewing the question. – Ben Brocka Jul 27 '12 at 20:51
  • If you want to exclude your own view counts, have a look at the user script at this question: Does the number of views on an SO question exclude my own views?. – Rob W Dec 23 '12 at 10:05

This feature request is already solved (basically). If you are worried about the view count not accurately displaying people's interest in your question, then Arjan's comment above with Jeff Atwood's answer should should shed some light on that.

"our view counts are very very strict -- more akin to visits as they are unique per IP per 15 minute interval."

If your question is reasonably popular, you'll have nothing to worry about. Unless you're systematically viewing your questions...

If you're like this user who attempted to write a script to sneak in the 10K views for a badge, then you'll have some more issues to factor in ;)

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  • Than it's fine, one view is absolutely OK ;) – Scolytus Jul 27 '12 at 16:59
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    Any reference for this? – Arjan Jul 27 '12 at 17:03
  • Yeah, reference would be great. Or is it just a guess? – Scolytus Jul 27 '12 at 17:04
  • good to include my sources and read a little more on the subject. It appears that your views may count multiple times, but it doesn't seem drastic enough that it would seriously distort the ability to see the interest your question(s) are getting. Learn something new everyday. – Ason Jul 27 '12 at 17:12
  • @Arjan - would you mind if I added in what you found? That or made your own answer? I think your findings in the comments belong as an answer. – Ason Jul 27 '12 at 17:15
  • Edit as you like, of course! (And, of course, no need to mention me. I will delete my comments later on.) – Arjan Jul 27 '12 at 17:15
  • @Arjan - just. can't. take. credit for it.. – Ason Jul 27 '12 at 17:26

I fully agree with OP & respectfully disagree with @BenBrocka - for questions with limited visibility that are highly important to the poster, the poster may check back on the post daily, refresh for new answers, and see the post count has gone up (@Ason: "Unless you're systematically viewing your questions").

"At least people are reading it, someone's sure to answer soon", they might logically intuit. But they're not aware - because it doesn't follow the commonsense point of the platform - that the amount of times your question has been viewed includes the count of how many times you yourself (the one person in the world who is definitely NOT able to answer it) have read it. I came to slowly suspect this was the behaviour before confirming it by explicitly searching, and am frustrated that I wasted a week thinking that the steady trickle of interest would eventually lead to an answer.

In my opinion this is a bug (& @Scolytus should tag it as such), since the behaviour deviates from what would be expected by common sense, and directly undermines the value of the feature. I was going to raise this issue as a bug tag before finding this post.

Users shouldn't have to implement a custom script. This shouldn't be ignored simply because it becomes irrelevant when enough other people have viewed the page to dilute the effect of self views. Given the rationale for the existing setup is memory saving (avoiding keeping a growing IP list for each question), could the compromise be that it stores a list of only the logged-in user's IP addresses? This would typically be 1, a handful at most, so shouldn't be a resource burden.

It's unclear how frequently this is an issue, since it'll primarily affect:

  1. Users in communities which are less active (common enough)

  2. Users who aren't aware that this is how the feature behaves (conceptually everyone, initially)

  3. Users who don't know how to, or don't care to, pick their way through the labyrinth to find this specific post on this specific board in order to discuss this bug.

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  • You don't need to check for answers. You get notified in your inbox for new answers (and comments for that matter). – rene May 22 at 16:40
  • @rene It's not a question of "need to" but "do people do it". Especially if you like to see the stats, you don't get a regular activity report as a notification. – Scolytus May 22 at 21:54
  • Your profile has your questions and that includes its number of views. An "activity report" in a single tab. – rene May 23 at 7:32
  • Checking for views is separate from answers - views allow you to disambiguate "not answered yet but receiving attention" from "unanswered unseen ignored, give up". Also inbox notifications I'm sure used to be daily max, I've just changed to 3hr which feels new. But still means there's benefit in manually refreshing if people are live responding. And the views in your profile use the same metrics i.e. include self views. – dez93_2000 2 days ago

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