I've answered a question asked several years ago, and my answer is half-contradictory of the accepted answer (which I believe overlooked many things). Not much time has passed yet, but let's assume for the sake of discussion that the OP will not pay attention to this new answer. Also assume that this is a reasonable question which has a few upvotes.

What can I do (if I should be doing anything at all) to attract attention to my new answer?

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    Spend a bounty? Apr 28 '17 at 19:51
  • @πάνταῥεῖ: Oh, that might be a good idea, actually, I didn't think of that somehow. Make that an answer?
    – einpoklum
    Apr 28 '17 at 19:53
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    If you're willing to put in effort and get community buy-in, you could try establishing a chat room for the purpose of drawing attention to new answers to old questions, as in here: How can we encourage high-quality new answers to old questions? Apr 28 '17 at 20:10
  • @shadow seriously? The top answer there is just wrong. Outright wrong.
    – Catija StaffMod
    Apr 28 '17 at 22:39
  • @Catija So downvote it. Flag it. This question is 100% the same as the other one, title is the same except for a single word. Actually I didn't check the answers, but given by a long time SO moderator and with such a score, I didn't think I should really check it further. Apr 28 '17 at 22:40

The very fact that you've posted it will draw attention to the question and answer.

Any new answer (along with any edits to the question or existing answer) will bump the question up to the top of the "active" list. People will see it and they can get to it easily by clicking the "answered" link rather than the question title.

Other than that, you really don't have anything to do... nor should you, provided the existing answer isn't outright wrong. In that case, you're more than welcome to comment on the existing answer to clarify the parts you think are incorrect - which you already seem to have done.

Also, it's a bit unfair to say that the OP doesn't seem to care, considering they haven't been on SO in two days, so they probably haven't even seen your answer.

I suppose that, if you have some reputation you're willing to waste, you could open a "current answers are outdated" or "improve details" bounty but this (to me) seems a bit self serving. As it stands, the question has pretty low overall votes for both question and answer.

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    Your first sentence is incorrect, in the sense that the number of visitors does not seem to have increased significantly (almost not at all), and there have been no new comments or votes. As for your comment about that question's OP - you're right and I'll change my question, although do note I did not refer to any specific question.
    – einpoklum
    Apr 28 '17 at 21:30
  • My first sentence is correct on every site except Stack Overflow (or possibly the full trilogy)... but you weren't being specific... as you, yourself say.
    – Catija StaffMod
    Apr 28 '17 at 21:34
  • Yeah, it looks like none of us is being consistent here. Anyway, I'm not sure you can vouch for every site on the network... not to mention the fact that the full trilogy is, what, 80% of all traffic?...
    – einpoklum
    Apr 28 '17 at 21:40
  • If you want SO specific help, maybe you should ask on MSO instead of MSE? 100% of my activity is on non-trilogy sites... so as far as I'm concerned, 80% of traffic being on the trilogy is immaterial.
    – Catija StaffMod
    Apr 28 '17 at 21:41
  • stackexchange.com/sites#traffic Based on that, I'd guess that SO itself is about 2/3s of traffic... SU and AU don't actually do that much more traffic than the next highest site, ELU. Quick math (dirty and incomplete) gives at least 3.9 million site views to the rest of the network... so I think your estimate is a bit overmuch... and I think that the only site this doesn't apply to is probably SO.
    – Catija StaffMod
    Apr 28 '17 at 21:50

It depends a bit on the type of answer you wrote. But if it's an answer that's a kind of reusable, you can use another approach also: by linking to your answer from any of your other answers you already have, or will post later on.

Because the more links there are to a question (and/or any of its answers), the higher that question will show up in the ranking of the "frequent" (linked!) questions (and hence also your reusable answer to such question).


About a question from 3 years ago ... which I answered about 1 year ago:

Note that my answer is 100% contradictory to the already existing answer, which was accepted until around I posted my answer (and then my answer became the accept one).

To write reuable answers, it should be written in such a way that you can link to it with something like "refer to my answer to X for ..." whereas '...' could be of those:

  • more details.
  • an example including a coding example.
  • a possible implementation.
  • etc.

I've also noticed that new answers to old questions often don't get as much visibility as the authors might like, which tends to encourage people to ignore old questions and answer new ones instead.

If that's a tendency you'd like to combat more generally than just getting more attention for this single answer, then one approach would be to post links to new high-quality answers to old questions in a chat room dedicated to that purpose. For this to accomplish anything, however, you'll first want to post on your local meta site to get buy-in, by helping others see the value of searching out and voting for such answers.

I did exactly this on the site where I am most active, and it has been a net positive, in my estimation. But it requires ongoing effort, and is prone to neglect by you and other participants. At the end of the day, you can't force anyone to read new answers to old questions, or vote on them, but you do have at least one tool at your disposal that, if used appropriately and with community support, can help high-quality new answers to old questions get more attention.


As πάντα ῥεῖ mentioned, you could try posting a bounty on the question.

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    It's been pointed out to me that attracting attention to one's own answer may come off as self-serving...
    – einpoklum
    Apr 28 '17 at 22:22
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    @einpoklum That's why the minimum bounty on a question you've answered is increased from 50 to 100. It's totally acceptable to do, since it attracts other high quality answers
    – Stevoisiak
    Apr 28 '17 at 22:23

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