My request is really an expansion on some meta-questions that have already been asked:

However these questions don't really address what I am wondering. Specifically, I came across a three-year-old, security-related question which already had 22 (!) answers. I felt that none of those really provided the best advice on what to do in the situation posed by the asker.

So I provided my own answer, and waited, hoping perhaps foolishly for it to be recognised by the community as providing something valuable. Instead, it appears to have been largely ignored, I presume because there are already up-voted answers above it. Basically then, my complaint is that on questions which were previously highly trafficed, but now have little to no traffic, and where most answers have at least one up-vote, StackExchange values old, quite poor answers, to the detriment of newer, unverified but potentially better answers.
I would like people's ideas on how this could be improved.

  • 1
    I don't know. If 384 users voted up an answer (with only 2 downvotes), obviously the community thinks that said answer "provided [a good] advice on what to do in the situation posed by the asker" Jul 21, 2013 at 13:36
  • By the way, here are 2 related Meta discussions: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/41851/… and meta.stackexchange.com/questions/12544/… Jul 21, 2013 at 13:40
  • There is this proposal, if it was accepted your question would receive attention by specialists (yet, not sure if you are going to like it). The proposal itself favour late-answers in threads with no accepted and upvoted answer. Lastly, the example you gave I agree with above commentary that if 382 users upvoted the answer great chances to be a good one. meta.stackexchange.com/questions/182643/… Jul 21, 2013 at 17:11
  • I commented on your original answer, explaining why I think it might not be getting the attention you think it deserves.
    – user102937
    Jul 21, 2013 at 22:05
  • @doubleDown: yes, that answer is great, but it does miss out on the point I ended up raising, which is why I felt compelled to add an answer. Regarding review queues, I see I don't have enough rep for those to appear yet. Jul 22, 2013 at 7:18
  • 1
    @AndreSilva: actually I do like that proposal. anything that can get knowledgeable people looking at answers with substance (even short ones like mine) is good. And as I said to doubleDown, there's really nothing wrong in the accepted answer, it's good. it just misses out on one thing. Jul 22, 2013 at 7:20

2 Answers 2


If the question somehow no longer applies

  • then you could pose a new question. (The question you linked to is very subjective to begin with, so there are definitely some better, more specific related questions. Those may have been asked already, though.)

If the question is fine but something has happened to make the previous answers no longer correct or less correct and those answers are so highly-voted that a new one is unlikely to gain any traction

  • it seems reasonable to pose a new question. Otherwise readers will keep being fed poor answers. In the new question be sure to include a link to the old one and the reason you think the topic needs to be revisited, though. Make the case that it should not be closed as a duplicate, but be ready for people to think it is a duplicate and close it as one anyway.

If the question is fine and the answers are no less good than they were originally, even if they are just OK (though with high vote counts) and you think you can improve on them

  • unfortunately I think there is less appetite to allow re-posting the question. In that case, the only hope of readers getting the best answers is for them to note the timestamps on the answers and at least give newer low-vote answers a read.

To support that (giving new answers to ancient questions a chance), it might be good to highlight when there is a big difference in answer ages. Maybe someone will consider exactly how that should be done and propose it as a feature request...


The traffic that came from question appearing on the top of questions/tag pages is long gone.

The traffic from google comes mostly from the users that have no SE account.

The registered users that come to the question in most cases won't see your answer because they won't go through all pages.

However, there are some means to draw attention to the old questions. One of them is the post to meta ;) The second possibility is the chat. The third are bounties. The edit or new answer would push the question up to active questions tab (however, it won't appear to users browsing by newest questions).

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