1

The beauty

First answer taught me some really nice and elegant ways to achieve the exact thing I was asking about.

The beast

Second answer made me see things in a different way, and led me to an overall better and more reliable solution, but without providing a direct answer to my original question.

Who should be rewarded the rep?

3

First answer tough me some really nice and elegant way to achieve the exact thing I was asking about.

I would go with this as the correct answer.

Second answer made me see things in a different way, and led me to an overall better and more reliable solution, but without providing a direct answer to my original question.

And this would get an upvote with a nice comment.

However, what you choose to do is entirely up to you.

8

That is entirely up to you.

You need to decide for yourself which answer helped you the most. That is the answer you award the 15 points to. If you really cannot decide between either, your other option is to accept neither.

But there is little point in asking us. The community has voting to voice their opinion about each answer.

  • +1 only you can make that decision. – JonH Jul 25 '13 at 15:06
  • I think accepting an answer should also contribute to future readers – Elist Jul 25 '13 at 15:12
  • @Elist: Again, then pick the one that you feel contributes more to future readers. The point I am trying to make is that accepting an answer is a personal choice. – Martijn Pieters Jul 25 '13 at 15:18
1

There is a reason that upvotes give 10 rep each, and can be multiple, while accepting answers give 15 rep, once. Upvotes are the true method of rewarding a good answer with reputation. Accepting an answer is also nice, but rep-wise it's only one and a half upvotes - not very important in the scheme of things.

So use it to indicate whomever felt helped you more, which it sounds like is the Beast in this case, and upvote the good answers, however many they are. If the Beauty is the truly better answer, it will get plenty of votes.

  • Voting up a correct answer is something I would do anyway - well why won't I? So for me accepting an answer is an extra 15 rep, which makes it two and a half up votes... However, you made a good point with having other people voting up the beauty – Elist Jul 25 '13 at 15:10
  • @Elist Actually. in this case you might accept one and upvote the other. (Either way the 'accept' action is worth 1.5 upvotes - you just get two of them.) An answer that is ultimately the most helpful but not really a correct answer might get an accept without an upvote. – Joe Jul 25 '13 at 15:19

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