It seems like SO is dedicated to questions, but one thing that would be useful would be for people to share something they learned. E.g. Recently I had an issue where I discovered IIS 7 is locked down so that even URL encoded strings which in turn contain an Ampersand are blocked from access. To fix it required a Registry entry change, something I discovered only was referenced in two obscure places on the internet. While I could have asked the SO community and waited for a bounty, one other option other than answering my own question would be to post the problem and solution. I think there are community questions and wikis, but it may be useful to have a third element called something like Lessons Learned or something.

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    because SOFU isn't a personal tech blog? Mar 24, 2010 at 21:27
  • I don't know who originally coined SOFU, but I love it.
    – Randolpho
    Mar 24, 2010 at 21:58
  • It's really MSOFU, but the M is silent and mostly ignored by the community.
    – Gnome
    Mar 24, 2010 at 22:03
  • STFU would be better but its close enough.
    – Locutus
    Mar 25, 2010 at 3:01
  • You can always ask (and answer) the question yourself. : ) I think the closest you can get outside of that is to daily scout the relevant tags for similar questions.
    – rlb.usa
    Mar 26, 2010 at 22:53

2 Answers 2


I think the usual (and if I remember correctly, officially encouraged) way is in fact asking the question, and answering it by oneself.

As earlz points out, this is not a very widespread practice. That, however, is no reason not to put valuable content onto SO. I would say if your "monologue" question gets closed because people don't like your answering your own question, take the case here on Meta. If it's a good, valid question, you will most likely get good feedback here, the question reopened, and a meta link preventing future closures.

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    Yep - StackOverflow Jeopardy! Mar 24, 2010 at 21:26
  • 3
    doo DOO doo doo doo DOO doo... Mar 24, 2010 at 21:28
  • The thing is that this isn't done nearly often enough to be considered "appropriate" by most users (and thus, subject to closing and whatnot)
    – Earlz
    Mar 24, 2010 at 21:30
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    @earlz then the case would have to be taken to the court (i.e. here.) and if necessary, reopened with a link to the official meta verdict. I came across an excellent example just a few minutes ago: stackoverflow.com/questions/2165022/… funnily enough, I've been thinking about opening a similar jeopardy question about PHP troubleshooting, seeing as many newbies don't know even the very basic steps of debugging. This is a practice that should be encouraged IMO.
    – Pekka
    Mar 24, 2010 at 21:38
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    @earlz: I have (successfully!) encouraged two users to do it in the last week. They received no backlash that I noticed. Can you point to example of people pushing against this practice? Mar 24, 2010 at 21:47
  • @dmckee: I would be wary of accepting your own answer if there really is another good correct answer (example: stackoverflow.com/questions/2000861/…), and I have seen backlash when the OP essentially repeats another answer and then accepts it (but, of course, don't have the URL handy).
    – Gnome
    Mar 24, 2010 at 22:14
  • @Gnome Personally I always make my self answer CW (note: not the question). And I can see here answerers would feel cheated if the OP accepts his own answer fully equivalent to one offered by another person. But that's not a problem for Jeopardy questions where I write the question and answer in emacs, paste in the question and then immediately paste in the answer; which is the situation this poster is asking about. Mar 24, 2010 at 22:21
  • @dmckee: I see your point for questions you plan to self-answer, but I disagree in the example I gave. And it's not about rep (which I almost completely don't care about on SO being over 10k, but is relevant to most), because CW should imply a stronger sense of "community ownership" and encourage editing by others much more than usual. -- Basically, I agree with you, but wanted to make a distinction for others coming upon this question later.
    – Gnome
    Mar 24, 2010 at 22:33
  • In fact, here's another example where the answer isn't CW, but could benefit from being CW because it really is a blog post on SO and others could improve/correct/etc. stackoverflow.com/questions/2474018/…
    – Gnome
    Mar 25, 2010 at 1:22

It is perfectly fine to document the issue you solved by asking a question and answering your own question. Just keep the time between the question and answer short (e.g. prepare it in advance). You can also leave a comment to your question explaining why you answered your own question and perhaps add a reference to one of the articles below.

See the answers to these questions:

Is it poor etiquette to answer your own question?

Should I answer my own question, or not?

Why could it be considered gaming the system if you answer your own question?

Etiquette for answering your own question

Consistently Answering your Own Questions

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