This question is about an OPTIONAL delay of posting ones own answers. The poster would be the one to decide. He or she would not have to meet certain requirements, hence OPTIONAL.

When I discover something surprising, interesting, or just plain useful, I like to post a question along with the corresponding answer. However, I am often surprised by answers that are better than my original answer.

Could we have the option to submit our answer at the same time we submit a question, but have the option of delaying it being posted for an optional 1 or 2 days?

Some people, who may have much better answers than ours, may not even look at questions that already have visible answers posted to them.

Until it is revealed, we could see something like:

The OP chosen to delay posting of his/her answer until tomorrow. In the meantime, feel free to provide an answer you think will top it.

That would let people know that we have done the work to answer our own question, but we are willing to let them earn reputation for answering it as well. Also, for really hard questions, it will let people know that the question must be answerable, so they might take courage and do a little extra research.

I also really liked this code golf question in which the poster (Tomas) knew for sure that he had the right answer, and mentioned so, but didn't reveal it. He provided a checksum to ensure that other posters knew he had in fact come up with his answer ahead of time.

This post was inspired by comments by Brad Gilbert and by the aforementioned code golf question by Tomas.

  • I thought we didn't lose rep for negative votes on feature requests on Meta. I guess I was wrong. Apr 21, 2015 at 13:45
  • 2
    @random This is not a duplicate of that. That link is about mandatory, automatic delay, this is about a voluntary delay
    – durron597
    Apr 21, 2015 at 14:00
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    @durron597 and OP - still, same idea - delay on self answers. This approach can be added as answer to the original request, as alternative for the team in case they will consider it. Apr 21, 2015 at 14:03

1 Answer 1


I don't see why this needs to be a new feature, for a few reasons:

  1. In the question you linked, you got additional answers anyway that were better than your answer. Posting your own answer didn't prevent people from answering the question.
  2. You always have the ability to save your answer in locally, and post it a few days later. You already can't accept your own answer in the first 48 hours anyway.
  3. This doesn't really further the goal of most stack exchange sites, which is to:

Our main goal is to help the most people we can.

On sites that aren't really so much about expert questions and answers, like code golf, users can already do things like Tomas did in that post. The current features sufficiently cover doing things like that.

  • "On sites that aren't really so much about expert questions and answers, like code golf" - man, do you realise how hard is to write up a bulletproof specification? :-D Apr 22, 2015 at 14:37
  • @JanDvorak Sigh, yes I do
    – durron597
    Apr 22, 2015 at 14:42

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