Would it be possible to create some sort of question difficulty flag which would be enabled for peers with enough rep within that respective tag?

The purposed of this would be to identify questions that people at lower personal experience level would be able to answer.

As peers cast their difficulty rating this would cause the difficulty rating to get averaged and re-calculated.

If this is a duplicate, please guide me to the meta question that already justifies/denies this idea because I was unable to find any.

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    possible duplicate of How about a difficulty rating for questions?, and meta.stackexchange.com/questions/70307/…, and several more. – j08691 Nov 7 '13 at 20:15
  • If someone had the experience and rep to rate an easy question why wouldn't they just answer it? – Joe W Nov 7 '13 at 20:20
  • This wouldn't be an option for the person asking the question but rather members that view the question. Community-based difficulty ratings. – MonkeyZeus Nov 7 '13 at 20:20
  • But why would the community want to rate the questions? What's the incentive? After all, there is no direct benefit for the asker, nor for the rater. Also, difficulty ratings are a subjective thing. What is a "5" to one person may be a "2" to the other – Pekka Nov 7 '13 at 20:23
  • @probablyPekka If someone has earned say 6K rep in a certain tag then would it be an incredible mis-judgement that they can accurately rate a question with that tag? – MonkeyZeus Nov 7 '13 at 20:25
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    Many beginners who are asking questions are unfamiliar even with the programming languages they're using and the relative complexity of the problem they're having. It's not uncommon (in some tags, anyway) to see questions like "I'm a noob, but this seems like it should be simple. How do I X?" and it turns out that X is actually not possible at all, or else pretty difficult to do. These would be "very difficult" questions in one sense, but they're not questions that experts would ask in the first place. – Joshua Taylor Nov 7 '13 at 20:28
  • @MonkeyZeus The misjudement is assuming that every single user with at least 6k rep has the same opinion as to how hard a given question is, not whether they think they're qualified to give an opinion, or even that each opinion isn't reasonable, given that user's scale, particular expertise, etc. – Servy Nov 7 '13 at 20:29
  • @j08691 I believe you misunderstood the question. – MonkeyZeus Nov 7 '13 at 20:29
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    What benefit does this have? Can't a user judge within seconds, often merely from the title, whether or not the question is answerable by him/her? – Bart Nov 7 '13 at 20:30
  • One benefit could be the ability to sort by difficulty. So if an SO user wants to put in some time into answering a difficult question and expanding the knowledge base of SO then they can easily find one rather than be bombarded by "So I have this weird issue where I don't know how to concatenate a string and have scoured the internet and tried many things...blah...blah...blah" which I've seen get upvotes and it's just demotivating. – MonkeyZeus Nov 7 '13 at 20:39
  • If you think the duplicates by @j08691 don't apply, please state how they don't apply. It seems that this question is heading towards closure. If there is any reason why it shouldn't be, please clarify. – Bart Nov 7 '13 at 20:44
  • @Bart This is not something that the OP would rank and I make zero mention of any sort of additional reputation points. – MonkeyZeus Nov 7 '13 at 20:49
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    So your desire is to find a way to weed out the trivial stuff? That I can get behind. There are several suggestions in that direction - I'm linking to one of my own because that comes most readily to mind, but there are many many more worth looking at. Does SO need social networking features to improve the experience for expert users? – Pekka Nov 7 '13 at 23:51
  • @probablyPekka, spot on!!! I probably attracted such negative attention due to the simplicity of my question but the Bike Shed Effect is so incredibly well suited for what I am talking about. Thank you for providing the link to your SO Social Networking. My post was definitely not the be-all end-all idea/solution but I wanted to see what far more experienced users such as yourself are seeking in similarity to my idea. – MonkeyZeus Nov 8 '13 at 13:43
  • I think it is a good idea. Question difficulty is a core attribute that is not measured on SE. However, I see the benefit more in a better reputation calculation, since harder questions need better answers. This could be reflected in higher reps, which in turn would give rep and privileges to more competent people. – jackthehipster Sep 26 '14 at 11:03

Why go through all that trouble? Those who are able to judge how difficult it is to answer a question, might well just answer the question.

And if I'm a user with not much experience, it's still not all that hard for me to judge whether or not I'm able to answer the question. Usually tags and title are a pretty decent indication. And if not, it will not take much more than a couple of seconds of looking at the question itself to see if I have a chance. (Of course I could spare myself that step since I'm a bloody idiot, but this is for the general case).

So you want to answer difficult questions? Well, if they are difficult, they might have been around for a while. Go and browse through your favourite tags. Go to the unanswered tab perhaps. Have a look at questions with a bounty. Those have been around without a satisfying answer for at least two days.

There are plenty of easy ways to determine the difficulty of a question, or to limit your search/filtering in such a way that you can find questions that might be of interest to you. Adding another layer of evaluation on top of this, in my view, does not add much, if anything at all.

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SO provides several ways to find/filter the questions you want to see, adding another dimension will be more confusing than helpful.

Question are ranked with respect to how useful they are. This meant to serve the purpose of helping others, that are interested to find useful posts faster.

| improve this answer | |

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