It may seem like a stupid thing, but could we please be able to pay real money to set a bounty.

For example, if I had only 1 rep, I want to be able have a bounty.

Here late the suggested prices in USD. Convert money here

  • $0.49 for each 50 reputation
  • $0.99 for each week
  • $1.99 for a month
  • $9.99 for a year

Every month, the bounty fee would come in. This would mean you would have to enable your account with a bounty fee button on your profile.

  • 14
    1) Your question is unclear and a mess. It is not clear to me if you wanted to give Stack Exchange money to set a bounty if you don't have enough reputation yet or if you want to give the money to the best answer instead of (or in addition to) the reputation bounty we have now. 2) The system is working great without money. Introduce real money and you get all the wrong motivations that greed for money brings along. Terrible idea. Nov 11, 2014 at 15:48
  • 6
    A bounty for an entire year? That wouldn't totally destroy the bounty system or anything.
    – animuson StaffMod
    Nov 11, 2014 at 16:22
  • I don't think it is an exact duplicate. In the above suggestion, the money is paid to SE for bounty points, whereas in the other suggestion money is paid directly to the answerer.
    – user234810
    Nov 11, 2014 at 16:33
  • 3
    ummm @Paul, Martijn Pieters commented on this very soon after it was posted, animuson a short while after. We do not have to explain downvotes, ever!
    – user273376
    Nov 11, 2014 at 23:11
  • 1
    This makes no sense at all. What is the point of this? Nov 12, 2014 at 0:27

2 Answers 2


Ignoring any technical inconsistiences and moral issues (why I am I working for Stack Exchange for free?) I can see the following problems with the basic idea of being able to use money to purchase bounties:

  • Whatever amount you charge will be a large and possibly unaffordable amount for some people while an inconsequential amount for others.

  • Using your example $4.90 for placing a 500 bounty on a "do my work for me" question would be very attractive because it would amount to considerably less than what I charge and I could use Stack Overflow for cheap outsourcing.

  • The community can't close a question with a bounty they can only downvote it and why will I care if I only had one reputation point to start with? I can always make a new account if/when I get a question ban and pay for the bounty using a different card / method.

  • If a moderator deletes my question what happens when I call my credit card company and raise a dispute because Stack Exchange promised a week of advertising I didn't receive? Maybe they could make the refund automatic to save disputes but then moderators would still be wasting all their time evaluating / closing poor questions with a bounty.

This is also ignoring the several valid comments about it destroying the existing bounty system. You'll end up in a state where people who have donated many hours of time helping others can't use the bounty system effectively because it's full of paid bounties.

  • 2
    Precisely, we'd get a flurry of 'do my homework' or 'give me code' questions.
    – user273376
    Nov 12, 2014 at 2:38
  • @Gone Citation needed.
    – user234810
    Nov 12, 2014 at 4:26
  • 1
    @Paul No, citation is not needed. It is guaranteed that it will happen. This feature would get abused to an unholy degree. Just look at SO now; it gets so many bad questions, even without bounties. Adding a bounty makes a question immune from closure, so guaranteed, this would result in a ton of low quality garbage that can't even be cleaned up by non-moderators.
    – fbueckert
    Nov 12, 2014 at 17:02

There are two flaws in your idea:

  1. What's wrong with the current system? From what I've seen, the majority of bounties are awarded - and not just by default. They bring in good answers that typically answer the question fully. People are already willing to dedicate a substantial amount of their time to help strangers, in return for reputation points you can't use outside SE. They don't need an incentive to rush to answer questions with bounties on them.
  2. This would be ineffective. At best, a person can earn $4.90 for answering a question with a bounty on it (as per your model), if the bounty is for +500 (if the person who receives the bounty gets the money, which you didn't necessarily imply). Is that really much of an incentive? It might take a user an hour to write a really good-quality, bounty-worthy answer, especially if they have to do a lot of research to find sources (as they would in such sites as Skeptics or History of Science and Mathematics). Currently, that's about half of U.S. minimum wage. There's essentially no incentive in your model.
  • 1
    The proposed question does not suggest that the money is paid to those awarded the bounty.
    – user234810
    Nov 12, 2014 at 2:15
  • @Paul Ah, I see. Thanks. That means the question makes even less sense.
    – HDE 226868
    Nov 12, 2014 at 2:16
  • The suggestion is to buy bounty points, so those with low rep can have access to the same promotions as others.
    – user234810
    Nov 12, 2014 at 2:18
  • @Paul Okay, I think I understand the question better. I'm still going to leave this answer up, though, so others can judge it for themselves. Thanks for the explanations.
    – HDE 226868
    Nov 12, 2014 at 2:20

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