While browsing SE sites, I often see questions (some quite old) that have been bumped because answers have been deleted.

I did originally assume these were pending edits, but they're not.

Should questions with deleted answers be de-bumped or removed from view in the same way as mass downvoted questions are?

The net effect is that current and active questions are demoted due to spam/AI answers on old and obsolete questions are bringing these needlessly back to life.

Example on History. The last modified action is by “Aristocratic Jack” but the questions but aren’t visible when I visit the questions themselves.

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  • 3
    They're not. Pending edits are visible only in the review queue, or if you happen to browse directly to such a post, then you'll see (1) appended to the edit link. What gave you that wrong impression? Any example? Commented May 30 at 7:45
  • 3
    Do note that the timeline records bump events: english.stackexchange.com/posts/621992/timeline
    – rene
    Commented May 30 at 7:55
  • @ShadowWizard - example added.
    – Boots
    Commented May 30 at 7:58
  • 1
    Those are not pending edits; they're deleted posts.
    – Glorfindel Mod
    Commented May 30 at 8:09
  • 4
    Those are not pending edits. The questions were bumped by being answered by the user, and the answers were later deleted. It's confusing because the text changes from "answered" to "modified" once the answer is deleted. Commented May 30 at 8:09

2 Answers 2


The rest of us may feel that a deleted answer is still valuable. The most common reason for doing that is when someone loses their temper and rage quits, deleting many of their answers as they leave. We'd want to spot that and potentially undelete the answers.

Spammers would create answers and immediately delete them. If this left the question unbumped then this would be hard to spot. They'd presumably then undelete them when they felt the coast was clear and currently undeleting an answer does not bump a question. Obviously if that was ever implemented then this would be much less of a problem.


I assume you refer to the "modified by" labels.

You can check the timeline for any post (click on the clock symbol under the downvote button): https://history.stackexchange.com/posts/35479/timeline

We don't see any edits there. So that means in this case that an new answer was posted that has been deleted since. Adding an answer marks a question as "active". It doesn't rewrite history when the reason the question became active is reversed.

  • 2
    Thanks for this Rene. For someone with my level of reputation, I don't see any mention of the deleted answers on the timeline. For one of those questions, I only see the historical answers and a couple of comments that have been added recently - nothing from the declared "modified by user", hence my confusion here.
    – Boots
    Commented May 30 at 8:44
  • @Boots: It is indeed confusing, but usability improvements is too much to hope for. It will never happen (unfortunately). Commented May 30 at 19:38
  • @This_is_NOT_a_forum - now I understand the reasons, it’s perfectly fine. I also understand that any enhancements to the platform take 6-8 weeks (with no expectation of which 6-8 weeks)
    – Boots
    Commented May 30 at 19:42

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