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This question is not a duplicate of this one or this one because non of answers provided for these two actually answers this question.

I want to favourite (not: bookmark) an answer, that isn't the top one and isn't that good to deserve to be top one. But, still, it is enough important for me to favorite it. I can't! Why?

  1. Favoring question and upvoting answer is not the solution. Answer in important to me, but may not be same good to others. Plus, my single vote won't bring it to the top.

  2. Favoring question and remembering answer is even worse solution. Answer can be very deeply in the list, or on another page, and it's position will vary from time to time.

  3. Bookmarking answer is not a solution. I don't want to mess with my bookmarks for this single purpose and because I strictly ask about favoring not bookmarking an answer. So I'll be able to access from my profile, not from my bookmarks bar. I'm allowed to have such desire, right?

Once again, this question asks, what are the reasons behind not implementing such obvious feature so far. It does not asks (as linked ones), how to work-around this missing.

And as a beautiful summary:

Questions are merely the sand that produces the pearl.

Since Jeff said, that answers are far more important than questions, then why the hell we can't favorite them? Why we're limited to questions only?

EDIT: Too many people suggests here, that favorites works like bookmarks, and that is, why we don't need to favorite answers, but we can favorite questions. They don't. Not for me and not for others (probably). If any argument said here (like cluttering bookmarks bar with countless number of bookmarks) does not convince you, then let me put that this way: favorites are public, so I can express my point of interest to others; bookmarks are my own, private (and thus sucks!)

  • Do you want to be notified of changes in this answer, or do you just want to keep the link available inside your Stack Exchange account? – S.L. Barth - Reinstate Monica May 11 '15 at 11:51
  • I was just about to downvote (probably out of spite) but than realized... hey it makes very much sense that you may want to keep the content of an answer as your favorite answer to a problem, while the question in itself may be very irrelevant. And in fact, I realize I myself often want to favorite an answer, not the question it answers. Why can't we favorite answers? – Félix Gagnon-Grenier May 11 '15 at 14:38
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    You haven't explained why you want to favourite an answer. What would be your value in favouriting an answer? Please note that I'm not asking what's wrong with favouriting questions; nor am I asking what's wrong with bookmarks. Very specifically, what would be the use to you in a favourited answer? – 410 gone May 11 '15 at 15:59
  • @EnergyNumbers Why you want to favourite a question? I use the same logic for answers. Or, to put this the other way: Answers are by far more valuable to me. Actually, I don't find nearly any value in questions. Currently, the only option, I'm left, is to favoriite question and look for the answer somewhere deep (if it isn't top one). Each time. – trejder May 12 '15 at 7:45
  • @trejder as you don't know why I favourite a question, you can't possibly know that it's the same logic for why you want to favourite answers. So why do you want to favourite an answer? – 410 gone May 12 '15 at 10:02
  • @EnergyNumbers I thought I have expressed that enough times here. Because I want to be able to go to my favorite answer directly from my profile (bookmarks can replicate this behavior, merely, but can) and because I want to show others my favorite answers (I can't use bookmarks for this purpose at all). Now, I can only show my favorite questions. Again and again -- for me value of SE is based on answers, not on questions. Being able to favorite only questions -- when questions are just mere begin to real value -- is wrong. – trejder May 12 '15 at 11:31
  • @trejder do you have any evidence that anyone wants to see your favourite answers? You seem to be basing the request on assuming other people are interested: is there evidence for that? If you genuinely want to demonstrate that you do appreciate a specific answer, then there is already a system in place for that: award it a bounty. And why do you want to go to a specific answer from your profile? What's the use case there? – 410 gone May 12 '15 at 12:27
  • @EnergyNumbers Do you have any evidence that anyone wants to see your favourite questions? Then why this mechanism was ever invented and implemented? What makes it so different from answers (from logical point of view). Don't you see, that this discussion is pointless? Most of speakers here seems to be assuming that question and answers are way different (in terms of favoring one or another). And basing only on this assumption, they say, that favoring answers is stupid. They're not. They're exactly the same. At least for me. At least in terms of favoring. – trejder May 12 '15 at 12:36
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The pragmatic reason is that it would multiply the UI elements needed to support a feature we do not necessarily believe in philosophically.

Stack Exchange was built on the premise that knowledge sharing as a malleable thing — situations change, answers improve, new information comes in… and the entire thread is supposed to capture and adjust to that ever-improving knowledge.

While I can appreciate that you might want a direct link to a static answer, it doesn't really fit our model for how we view information. Bookmarks on the other hand, are a personal thing well-suited to this situation… but saving a favorite answer really goes against how we elect to present this information systemically.

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    Therefore, please, address the issue, that answers are by far more valuable and important than questions. If this is so big problem or doesn't fit into your philosophy, then simply remove favoring of questions and put favoring of answers instead. Questions are worthless without answers. Answers are the real power behind these sites. Why they can't be favorited, if questions can? – trejder May 11 '15 at 13:56
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    @trejder You can find "answers" all over the Internet. The value proposition SE brings is all the constant vetting that goes behind it. So if you say we should get rid of saving question threads to get this answer feature through, I'm afraid you may have missed the larger philosophical point entirely. But thank you for the discussion. – Robert Cartaino May 11 '15 at 14:02
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    Thank you for acknowledging that this request has value. I'd like it too. A good example is on Meta, where this has 147 answers and I'm watching the progress of one in the 80s. I didn't upvote it so it wouldn't be in that section of my profile. I use mobile web, have many bookmarks and little knowledge of how to run queries, making it harder to access links. That's my own fault! I just appreciate the time taken to explain why the system's not designed for a feature such as this, rather than dismissing it as unimportant. – Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL May 11 '15 at 23:37
  • @RobertCartaino If I'm not mistaken, favorites are accessible only through one's profile and are mainly used to show one's interest in something (am I missing something?). If you put an entire SE philosophy to support theory, that we can favorite questions, but we can't answers, because... then you're right, that this discussion is pointless. We're talking about tiny little feature, that would make many people happy and wouldn't hurt others and you're trying to hit me with the largest cannon you have, by pulling out SE philosophy, how you present things etc. I really must be missing the point! – trejder May 12 '15 at 11:36
3

You are favoriting a page. It so happens that questions and their related answers are provided as a page, so you have the ability to favorite the whole thing, not individual parts of it. For instance, we can't favorite comments.

While the "favorite" is presented as part of the question, and is next to the question, it could be anywhere on the page and mean the same thing - this discussion is important and useful. It's like other "question level" metrics such as views.

There's no compelling reason or need to favorite individual, smaller, parts of the page. You may have a personal desire to highlight specific content, but that doesn't mean that changing the site to include that functionality for all users will improve Stack Exchange.

In order to make this change, though, you're not going about it the right way. You are assuming that this should be done, and asking Stack Exchange why it isn't without giving a good reason for it to exist. The best you have to offer is, " it is enough important for me to favorite it. "

If you can come up with a dozen examples of answers that deserve to be favorited by many users, and explain how giving this functionality would significantly improve Stack Exchange for all users, then you'd have a better case to ask for this functionality.

At the moment, though, this reads little better than an entitlement rant.

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I think that is a good question.

I think the main point is usability and the frequency someone would use it (in my opinion, not that much. I might be wrong).

I think the purpose of pushing an answer to the top (for you only) is just because you found it useful and you might want to use it later on. For that, we have browser bookmarks already, which serves their purpose well. The other thing we have is voting, which might indicate it is good to you. (if you have the second answer up-voted and not the first, that might be the definition of you 'favoring' the second answer) There is nothing in between, and it might not be that useful as you think.

In my opinion, this feature might also over-complicate things in the UI. The current very basic UI is easy to understand and fits its purpose well.

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    You are another person, that claims that bookmarks works just the same way as favorites. Let's just put a line on this. They don't. At least not for me. I don't want to clutter my bookmarks bar, if I can use favorites section in my profile. Beside, there is a logical questions behind -- no one has provided so far a reasonable explanation, why we can favorite questions, but not answers. I completely don't understand what do you mean by over-complicating of UI? Adding star-like button to each answer and listing favorite answers along with favorite questions over-complicates anything? – trejder May 11 '15 at 13:50
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As I understand from your edit, you would like to publicly show the answers that you find best.

You can put the links to these answers in the "About Me" section in your profile page. You could make it a section called "My favorite answers". In this way, you publicly show the links to these answers, and you have them at your fingertips when you're visiting Stack Exchange.

You will not be notified if the answers change, like you would with starred questions - but that doesn't seem to be what you're after.

An alternative is to use a social bookmarking service. You would still have the links available, whether you were at work or at home - unlike browser bookmarks that you would have to synchronize between browsers on different computers. And depending on the service you could make the links visible for the world, or keep them to yourself, as you see fit.

Either solution means that you keep these links in a separate place, not hidden among the bookmarks in your browser.

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As I see it, Favorites in Stack Exchange are equivalent of Bookmarks in browsers.

Can you bookmark specific part of a web page, without third party tools? No.

In the same way, we can't bookmark part of a Q&A page, just the whole page.

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    While that is true in general, and I somewhat agree. I think that the difference is that a browser doesn't have that much info on the content (they don't know how to remember a specific part, since that might change). Here, SE knows the ID of the post, so it might be a lot easier to go where you wanted to go. – Patrick Hofman May 11 '15 at 11:59
  • Part of my question saying: "So I'll be able to access from my profile, not from my bookmarks bar" seems to be suggesting, that favorites in SE are not the same as bookmarks (at least for me). As for your other arguments, I must admit, that I not only agree with them, but I also not fully understand them. What could be (if any) technical or logical reason for not being able to favorite answer, if I can favorite question. Answers and questions are exactly the same entity here (as for favoriting them), so arguments about bookmarking part of the page doesn't really sound reasonable... – trejder May 11 '15 at 13:46
  • @trejder I'm not talking about technical side - it might be technically trivial to implement. Just explaining why I think we can favorite only questions, which is what you asked for. – Shadow Wizard Wearing Mask May 11 '15 at 14:02
  • ... And here (but want to avoid being accused of serial upvoting). Anyway, "merci" for your constructive help a few mins ago ... With that: I'm done (for today, and will be back looking at your many other answers soon) – Pierre.Vriens Dec 17 '15 at 8:08
  • @Pierre.Vriens thanks again, and sorry you have a semi-rough day. – Shadow Wizard Wearing Mask Dec 17 '15 at 8:11
  • Don't worry, the days that meta.SE could influence my mood are long gone ... It's the time of the day for a walk with my dog again ... which is way more important to me then worrying about meta.SE ... And think about things like #JeSuisChien (I trust you know what that means?) – Pierre.Vriens Dec 17 '15 at 8:18
  • Glad to hear that @Pierre - hope you had a good walk, and I'm little ashamed to admit I didn't know what #JeSuisChien meant until Googling it now. This did get major coverage in our local media of course, but I wasn't familiar with that hashtag. (no twitter for me) – Shadow Wizard Wearing Mask Dec 17 '15 at 10:22
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    Yes the walk was great, and "Babou" (= name of my dog, an amazing great Pyreneer of 10 years) suggested to me whiie walking this: "don't worry about meta.SE ... instead be happy about your shining new profile picture on drupal.SE" ... FYI: it's "Diesel" ... does that ring a bell? I'm planning to add a picture of it to my newest question ... and add something like "if you don't understand what my real point is, then try to find out what's the relationship between this dog and HATE?" – Pierre.Vriens Dec 17 '15 at 10:35

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