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On October 28, I answered a question. By the end of my work day, it had become the most upvoted answer and the accepted correct answer, with I think eight or so upvotes.

Ever since, my answer gets a few upvotes almost every day. Why? I understand that it is a good answer to a fairly general question, and so received a lot of attention and confirmation at first, but why haven't the upvotes long since trailed off to nothing the way they do for most answers? What is keeping my question in the "public eye" and why to users continue to feel compelled to upvote it?

My only thought is that maybe some users view questions/answers based primarily on their popularity. So it's kind of a viral thing.

I, of course, don't have a problem with receiving these upvotes. I just am intrigued by why they keep trickling in.

UPDATE: I consciously chose not to put a reference to my question in this question when I first posted it, because my guess is that there's nothing all that special about my question, and that this is more likely some general sort of phenomenon. But I could be wrong, and someone asked for the reference, so I added it above.

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  • "What is keeping my question in the "public eye" and why to users continue to feel compelled to upvote it?" May be it's referenced as a duplicate for other frequent questions like the one you answered? – πάντα ῥεῖ Nov 17 '20 at 22:40
  • @Ollie, I added a link to it at the very beginning of the question. After looking at the question and answer, do you think it's anything all that special? If it were, why hasn't it been addressed by now? Why are so many users finding this question and answer when the subject of the question has been around for so long (longer that SO I think). – CryptoFool Nov 17 '20 at 23:01
  • @Steve I don't think it's particularly special, but it's short and well-written. I think the same about this post, for example. – Ollie Nov 17 '20 at 23:04
  • @Ollie - it doesn't make sense to me that it's that simple. I've submitted a number of answers that I figured would gain general attention over time. And yet I almost never get late upvotes for anything else but this one question. Is this really all that special? Is this a dumb question (my meta-question, not the original one being discussed)? – CryptoFool Nov 17 '20 at 23:04
  • @Steve This is just a guess, but it may also be that the question and/or your answer is linked to in some external site in some place which has a lot of traffic, such as some social media sites as Ollie suggested as a possibility. – John Omielan Nov 17 '20 at 23:04
  • Whoops @JohnOmielan, didn't see that ;) – Ollie Nov 17 '20 at 23:05
  • @John - ah! I hadn't thought of that. That rings truer with me than that it's just "business as usual", based solely on content. (no offense meant to you Ollie). - I wonder what the chances would be that I could find that reference. – CryptoFool Nov 17 '20 at 23:07
  • @Steve I said that too! ;) Just deleted it because John's comment came out 9 secs before mine. – Ollie Nov 17 '20 at 23:07
  • @Ollie - cool! Very smart of you both to think of it. – CryptoFool Nov 17 '20 at 23:08
  • Maybe it's a school thing. Maybe some instructor linked to it in their on-web materials for a class. – CryptoFool Nov 17 '20 at 23:09
  • 1. It was almost first, and sorted by "Votes" or "Active" it is first. 2. It's a simple analogy offered as an answer to the question Katie asked. 3. Maybe, several hundred votes ago you needed a few votes to pass 10K; and people are familiar with you. --- It's like a rocket ship that has its thrusters all misfire prematurely, it had initial propulsion and some boosting along the way (see rene's answer). It obtained an early orbit, how long you can keep it on course and where it will land remains more in the hands of physics and your competitors than your own, it's your race to lose. – Rob Nov 17 '20 at 23:43
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Go to the timeline of the question: https://stackoverflow.com/posts/64565671/timeline

That question is used in review audits over the last few days. That brings it to fresh eyes that have the privilege to vote.

The question became a hot network question on the 28th of October. Hotness attracts a lot, a lot of potential voters from around the network. It did pop-up in SO chat and in SE Chat but I'm not sure how many users follow those feeds.

The question got edited once and received 11 answers, each time an answer gets added the question is bumped on the active tab for users that focus on a tag. And is not a small tag.

The question got twittered: https://twitter.com/soiqbot/status/1322985276520701954

Your answer is currently top voted and therefore is the first answer for anyone that visits that question. Don't expect the voting to wear off anytime soon.

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    Oh wow! I think the 'audit' thing must be the reason. That's just the kind of thing I was suspecting. You also seem to confirm what I had guessed...that my question showed up on lists that users review because it reached some threshold. I didn't think to look at the timeline of the question (Doh!). That's very interesting. I'll definitely use that more in the future. - Thanks so much Rene for scratching my itch :o) – CryptoFool Nov 17 '20 at 23:13
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    I've received a number of audit questions while reviewing. I guess it never dawned on me that those were real, "live" questions. I don't know that I've ever thought to upvote one of them. It seems from the timeline that every time that my question was used as an audit question it was upvoted. I assume that that's because the ones that aren't upvoted just don't show up on in the timeline. – CryptoFool Nov 17 '20 at 23:26
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Stack Overflow is a popular place. It may be the case that your post is linked to and referenced in other Q/A sites like Quora, for example, as well as elsewhere on SE. It is also short, to the point, and well-written.

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  • Thanks Ollie! for the praise of my writing skills :o). That's a first for me! – CryptoFool Nov 17 '20 at 23:15

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