Occasionally I see questions with plenty of upvotes, but without interesting answers yet. One could assume that most of the upvoters would be interested in an answer, yet there are usually only <50% as many stars as upvotes. That makes me believe that most people don't even know about this feature. Perhaps it would be worth to display a small explanation next to the star if a highly upvoted does not have a good answer yet.

Edit: I misunderstood something, please ignore.

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    How do you receive notifications for starred questions? – Wrzlprmft Jan 9 '16 at 20:52
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    You haven't completely misunderstood, no. You have a counter of changes near "favorites" in your profile. – nicael Jan 9 '16 at 22:08
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    And yet, despite all the downvotes, your post raises an interesting ancillary question: what can be changed to make question tracking easier? – Deer Hunter Jan 9 '16 at 22:17
  • @Deer the OP here asks clearly for one thing: show a popup "You can also star this question as favorite" when one is upvoting. – Shadow9 Jan 10 '16 at 7:30
  • @ShadowWizard …thinking it would result in receiving notifications (like following a question on Quora). – Lenar Hoyt Jan 10 '16 at 12:32
  • I am confused by the number of downvotes. My question didn't do any harm, it was just a result of misinterpreting an answer elsewhere, and -1 points would have surely been enough to signal that my question is not worth reading. – Lenar Hoyt Jan 10 '16 at 12:52
  • If you mean you want to get notifications for changes in favorite questions it's a totally different thing, and I'm almost sure it has been asked before, I can have a look if you want. – Shadow9 Jan 10 '16 at 12:58
  • Regarding downvotes: it means people disagree with your feature request, me being one of them. Your request in this question is (was?) clear to me: "display a small explanation next to the star..." - well, for me it's just noise. I don't want it. So since I disagree with the request, I downvote. Simple as that. That's how Meta works. – Shadow9 Jan 10 '16 at 13:17
  • > If you mean you want to get notifications for changes in favorite questions it's a totally different thing. I thought SE would already be doing that, but apparently that was old information and the feature has been removed since. – Lenar Hoyt Jan 10 '16 at 13:33

There's a kernel of truth to what you write: too often we star a question but do not check whether it has been updated. Having a separate, low priority, low effort notification queue describing what exactly changed on our watchlist would be a good thing (the effort of cycling through 20 accounts and hundreds of changed favorited questions is simply too large for the existing feature to be useful).

Would be even better to be able to choose what not to watch in a particular question:

  • I may be not interested in edits to the question but would be genuinely inclined to revisit it once a new upvoted answer is posted (with varying thresholds).
  • I may want to re-read a particular answer (say, a canonical one) once it is edited.

EDIT: I understand that chances of getting this improvement are only marginally better than chances for meeting a talking tree. Here's hoping.

  • Yes, such a feature would be fantastic I think. Why are the chances slim? – Lenar Hoyt Jan 9 '16 at 22:57
  • @mcb - the devs are super-busy now. – Deer Hunter Jan 9 '16 at 23:07
  • What are they working on? – Lenar Hoyt Jan 10 '16 at 0:29
  • (: Voting for a new meta tag: [talking-tree] – brasofilo Jan 10 '16 at 4:45
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    Well, there was once such a thing called "envelope" - it used to lit up when there was a change in favorite question and I think it even listed all those changes. SE team (back then it was only Jeff) nuked it to dust at some point without giving any alternative. – Shadow9 Jan 10 '16 at 7:28

No, your base assumption is totally wrong in my opinion.

Personally, I upvote good questions, or in case of Meta bugs/requests I agree with. That does not mean that I want to make it favorite. Maybe 1 out of 10 questions are so good I would indeed like to keep track, but I really don't want any added noise for the 9 out of 10 questions I'm not interested in following.

Those who want can clearly see the star and its tooltip is very clear.

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    In addition to that, I favourite millions of questions in whose answers I am not even interested at all, and which I might have even downvoted. People often misinterpret favouriting as actually being, well, in favour of the question. But it's simply a way to keep track of the question, for whatever reason, even more so moderation and maintenance based reasons for me. – Chris says Reinstate Monica Jan 9 '16 at 23:45

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