I currently have a question on SO with no answers and barely any views. I am considering adding a bounty to the question to encourage people to answer it.

However, since my question is of the "is it possible to do this" variety, I am worried that nobody would answer the question honestly, but some person would just throw up a "you can't" message, without actually knowing whether it's possible or not, just to get his answer auto-accepted and make off with the bounty.

Even worse, since this is the accepted answer, then people would stop looking at my question, even though the accepted answer is unhelpful.

Is this something I should be worried about?

2 Answers 2


Any response requires at least two upvotes to be eligible for auto-acceptance. Therefore, while anyone can answer "You can't", at least two other people would have to agree and upvote for it to be worth his while.

Unless that's actually the correct response, it's not likely to succeed, not only because he won't be able to get the upvotes, but because someone else can come along and say "You can't, because (reasonable explanation)" and get your acceptance.

  • 1
    Okay, thank you. That really needs to be put in the FAQ somewhere.
    – MiffTheFox
    Sep 29, 2009 at 19:20

Implicit in your fear is the idea that "you can't" is dishonest... I don't think that's necessarily true. While, as Adam notes, such a brief and unhelpful answer is unlikely to garner a sufficient number of up-votes, you're still opening the door wide to answers that explain in detail exactly why you can't do what you want to do...

Perhaps you could re-word your question, such that it asks, "How can I accomplish X*?"* rather than "Is X possible?" This might at least reduce the motivation for bounty-hungry readers to spend time researching the impossibility of the task and instead go looking for solutions to your actual problem...

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .