I'd like to be able to keep track of a post that interests me, while not actually posting (since I have the same question, and nothing useful to actually add.) Since I can get email notification of my questions and answers, would it be possible to add a 'watch this topic' option somewhere?

  • 2
    upvoted for suggesting a very useful feature that i was also going to suggest - there's quite a few questions posted that i'm curious about the answer but just adding it to favorites doesn't help... Jan 22, 2010 at 1:32
  • I would like to be able to get e-mail notifications of interesting questions (either integrated with favorites or a standalone feature).
    – Sam
    Jan 23, 2010 at 5:26
  • Even though we can use RSS, it will be general. What we need is some thing like Wiki watchlist [en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Watchlist] .. If needed, there can be restriction for only 10 questions or some thing like that.
    – Guru
    Apr 29, 2010 at 9:57
  • very nice feature
    – Amr Badawy
    Jun 1, 2010 at 6:14
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    If this is status-completed, how do I get notifications about a post I didn't write or write an answer on? Adding something to my Favorites just puts it in a list buried in my profile - I don't get any notifications for it... . Aug 23, 2013 at 0:30

4 Answers 4


I'm experimenting with change notification on your favorites. I deployed a change on meta/su/sf where you will be notified of any changes to your favorites.

So as of now, there are four things you get notified of:

  1. new answers to your questions
  2. comment replies to your posts (or you, by name)
  3. edits to your posts
  4. new answers / edits in your favorite questions

(Additionally, you'll note that you can sort your favorites by "recent" which will put the ones with the recent activity at the top.)

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    I'm liking the new changes. Especially the sorting on the favorites page. Great work!
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    May 31, 2010 at 12:42
  • I definitely like the notifications for favorites and hope this comes to SO soon :) Jun 1, 2010 at 6:45
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    It would be useful to be able to watch a post without having to make it a favorite per se. I mean, sometimes something interests me but it's not really a "favorite". It would be cool to watch the post and get status updates in the mail icon in the top much like what happens for your own posts. Dec 1, 2010 at 21:52
  • I agree with javamonkey79. The semantic differences of watching a question and marking one as a favorite are subtle, but distinct. One may be interested in the outcome of a question and would want to follow it's progress but wouldn't necessarily label that question as a "favorite" question. The term "favorite" usually implies a positive preference which isn't always the case with some questions. Mar 24, 2013 at 12:17

Currently there is no functionality within the Stack Overflow engine to accomplish what you desire.

There is a way, however, to achieve close to the desired result using RSS. You can subscribe to the question RSS by clicking on the "Question Feed" button at the bottom right of the page.

As an alternative you can favorite the question using the little star underneath the voting section. This however, doesn't provide updates and must be manually managed, it can get out of hand when you've got many favorites.

  • downvoted for dead link; and favoriting the question just adds it to a list it doesn't provide notifications Jan 22, 2010 at 1:32
  • @Steven, see my updated answer Jan 22, 2010 at 18:54

RSS: https://meta.stackoverflow.com/feeds/question/20954

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    lol, we posted at the same time, I'm gonna strategically downvote you ;-) Sep 9, 2009 at 2:30
  • Heh, indeed, RSS shows it was a 1 second difference! I'd totally have already downvoted you, if I had enough points :P
    – please delete me
    Sep 9, 2009 at 2:38
  • Why don't you associate your SO account? There should be no one on this site with <100 rep..
    – John Fouhy
    Sep 9, 2009 at 4:38

Shameless self-promotion, but I am working on an API app that you may be interested in:

StackTracker: Desktop Notification app

It is currently still in development, but I am glad to hear that I am not the only one who wanted this functionality :-)

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