When I post a question, I am trying to ask specific questions that have not been asked before and explain the issue as clearly as possible. However, I get very little feedback/answers. So what is the best way to get more feedback?

  • 1
    What sort of feedback are you looking for? Maybe your questions are so esoteric no one knows the answer. Or maybe your questions aren't interesting. I suspect you'll be better off on the per-site meta where you're asking these questions and asking about specific questions. – ale May 23 '18 at 14:27

Your questions are getting feedback. Going through all of them.

  1. error plotting multiple lines in graph in python
    • Two comments, one explaining that the question doesn't have enough information for an answer and asking you to provide more information to remedy that, and another with a suggestion on something to try.
    • Has a downvote, indicating there's a problem.
  2. Updating SQL Table for a temptable
    • Has an answer that you've accepted.
    • Has two comments asking you to provide more information.
  3. i used nullif and got sql divide by zero error
    • Has an answer that you've accepted, and another answer in a comment.
  4. sql converting value error
    • Has an answer
    • Has an answer in comments with 8 upvotes.
    • Has three comments asking for more information (and being very specific about what's missing). Has 3 more comments with suggestions of improvements to make to your code (I assume that they aren't what the question is about, just useful improvements).
  5. primary key in the same order after updating the table
    • Has two answers, one that's upvoted.
    • Has three comments asking for more information, two asking clarifying questions, one that is stating that your question is missing something.
  6. (we're moving off SO from here on out) importance of stationarity of the data in correlation analysis
    • Has an answer.
  7. how to detect stationarity in time series in excel
    • Has two downvotes, indicating that there's a problem with the question.
  8. What is the best way to get more feedback?
    • Has two answers, one upvoted.
    • Has a comment asking for clarification as well as a suggestion.
    • Has several downvotes, indicating that there's a problem.

So all in all you have zero questions that have no feedback, and only one question (of seven eight) that has no answers or comments.

Clearly you're getting lots of feedback. Far more than you're actually using. You've only actually added information in response to one of the comments asking for more information. All the rest you've just ignored. Given that you've demonstrated that you're not interested in using any feedback that you get with the problems with your question, despite getting lots of it, clearly people should be providing far less feedback to you, as they're just wasting their time when they do.


You need better titles.

You do an okay job of basically listing keywords that describe the content of your question, and generally summarize the point you hope to have answered, but they don't really engage well if I'm just reading the newest questions in looking for a way to burn 20 minutes by answering a question or two.

As an example, and I'm not picking on your questions (as a new user, you're actually not doing bad at all):

sql converting value error

That .. doesn't compel me to go look at your question over others because I have (from my view of looking at new questions) no idea what you're trying to convert or how you're going about it because you don't mention the error in the one place where it could help me decide if I want to go read more.

You need better titles because you're struggling to understand what's relevant.

Beginner questions are fine, and it's pretty clear that you're trying to give all of the information you think someone would need in order to provide you with an answer.

But, I suggest starting off like this:

  • Put what you don't understand in the title and indicate that you don't understand it.

  • Begin your question with the error, and any phrases you used to search in order to figure it out. I'll tell you why that's important shortly.

  • Respond to feedback immediately - when you ask a question, don't go anywhere, if you get someone on the hook looking for more info, give it to them promptly, they might only have a few minutes to spare.

Struggling can sometimes look like lazy.

You're at a point where you (by what you post) seem like someone that should easily be able to tell what's going on, and the fact that you aren't explicitly showing folks what you searched for / etc so they can get a better idea of how you understand the problem might lead some to be put off because it looks like you're just not interested in searching much.

That's not the case, but making sure to say that clearly helps guide someone that has 5 or 10 minutes of spare time to burn to give you a more in-depth answer.

As Servy points out, you are getting feedback, but you have to better optimize your questions to (1) get people's attention through clearer titles and (2) let them know where you are in your understanding of things, so they can write a better answer.

I'd quickly and tersely say "foreign keys won't work there" to someone that seemed like they understood what foreign keys were and how they worked. But if I picked up that you were struggling with them (just as an example), I'd probably take some time to seize the opportunity and write an answer with more depth.

So, in short:

  • Better titles get more attention, tagging correctly helps too
  • You need to do a better job showing opportunities where a more individualized response would really help you. Don't let people just drive by thinking you seem to know what you're doing and just didn't search.

Read the comments against your questions (when left) - they're often a good indicator of what your question is lacking (and therefore unanswerable in it's current state).

Also look at similar questions that have gathered upvotes and look at what additional information they give.

It also pays to include what you've done to answer the question yourself (everyone appreciates you trying to solve the problem yourself).

Also, read the tour page for the site you're asking question in. People can easily see if you've read that or not. Reading the page there tells you what makes an acceptable question.


Often, the best way to get feedback is to ask about how to improve your question before you even post it.

It's possible, in a few cases, that the site you're thinking of asking on has a sandbox, a place on the meta site where you can sort of test-drive your question. Essentially, you would post it in an answer to the site's sandbox question on meta, along with some notes about what sort of suggestions you'd like, and wait for some altruistic souls to give advice, if they're so inclined. A handful of sites have them, including Programming Puzzles & Code Golf and Worldbuilding. Make sure you read the sandbox rules first, though, for more details.

Chat is also a possibility. Each site has a dedicated chat room, and there's a chance that people might be willing to discuss the question with you and give you feedback in a more relaxed, casual setting. Of course, this can make it a bit awkward to discuss how to work on longer posts - chat is really meant for short messages - but it's still an option. You can also use chat after you've posted the question, if you're really stymied. Just be sure to obey normal rules of chat etiquette, like not interrupting another conversation out of the blue.

Finally, the site's meta is an excellent place to ask after the fact. You can always post on meta asking about your question, if it had a negative reception, and requesting that folks give some feedback. People who commented on, voted on, or voted to close your question might see the post and talk a bit about why they did what they did. This is a great arena to talk about the question in an organized setting. That said, keep some basic rules in mind:

  • People are already probably trying to help you. Re-read comments on your posts before going anywhere else; chances are good that someone's already told you something helpful.
  • Don't go into a discussion assuming moderation actions are malevolent. 95% of the time, people are just trying to help out and make the site a better place. Remember that everyone here is volunteering, and giving their time for free to improve our corner of the Internet.
  • Be clear about what in particular you want feedback on, and what existing feedback has been confusing to you so far. Talk a bit about how you want to make the question better, and talk about what you see as its current strengths and weaknesses.

If you remember these rules, you're going to start the discussion on the right foot.


You have to do a little clickbait in the title, by making it interesting enough, that someone even who doesn’t have THAT problem will be like, hmm, what would happen if I DID have that problem?

  • 2
    Making titles clickbaity introduces one of the very problems SE was designed to solve, not perpetuate. – fbueckert May 23 '18 at 16:43
  • They are also easily identified. There is a reason click-bait articles is something that nobody likes on the internet. – Ramhound May 23 '18 at 19:58

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