I was scrolling through the main page and noticed a post with significantly more views than all the others around it (this was the question: "What causes jitter?" from October '12). It took me a minute to realize that the question was from 3 years ago, and was bumped because a user (helpfully) edited one of the answers to fix a broken link.

Why would an edit like this on a post from over 3 years ago be bumped back up to the main feed? Is seeing when a question or answer is edited useful for anyone? I've nearly accidentally commented on 2+ year old questions because I thought they were recent - in most forums this is bad practice. I'm new to SE so I'm also curious to know the opinion of it here.

  • @gnat I don't think this is a duplicate. This one here clearly asks why edit cause a bump, without ever asking to change this behavior. The other one clearly asks to change this behavior and stop edits from bumping questions, and the answers there fit this request by explaining why it's a bad idea, while not really explaining what is asked here. – Shadow Wizard Wearing Mask V2 Apr 9 '16 at 5:25
  • @ShadowWizard per my reading top answers in duplicate explain reasons why edits should bump the question – gnat Apr 9 '16 at 6:02

I'm aware of two reasons for this:

  1. Bumping the question exposes it for additional review. If the old edited question remains in its original place on the list, few people see the new version. Most 3rd party edits are placed into the review queue for approval. On the other hand, O.P.'s own edits and 3rd party edits by moderators and 2k members become live immediately. This has some abuse potential (content destruction, editing spam links into an old post), so it should be looked at.

  2. Some edits provide additional information. It may make an unaswerable question answerable. When the question is bumped, more people will be able to see the improved question and answer it.

We have discussed side effects of edit-bumping: here and here.