Why is there a 15 minute waiting period before allowing users to accept an answer on Stack Exchange?

3 Answers 3


It started here:

Discourage questions being marked as answered within an hour or so of being posted

The rationale is that if people are accepting answers within minutes or even seconds (no joke), they haven't even had time to properly evaluate or test the answer. The community felt (and I agreed) that some users were just accepting the first answer that was submitted even if it was wrong or sub-par.

15 minutes was decided on as the minimum amount of time it would take to receive a healthy number of submissions and actually read/test/think about the answers provided.

  • Thanks for providing a resource for further explanation. May 20, 2010 at 23:20
  • Agreed, much better answer than mine -- I was feeling lazy :-) May 20, 2010 at 23:28
  • Do you get a reminder or something if you have an open, answered question with unaccepted answer? I might be active for only 20 minutes and then forget I still have to accept that great answer I got 18 minutes ago.
    – Rudie
    Apr 26, 2011 at 19:17
  • @Rudie: There is a message that shows up, as mentioned in this recent question. I think the message goes away after several days/weeks and possibly disappears once you hit a certain reputation.
    – Aarobot
    Apr 26, 2011 at 19:37
  • I'm very curious. Don't think I've seen it before. Now I'm gonna wait for it... Is that okay? =)
    – Rudie
    Apr 26, 2011 at 19:41
  • @Rudie so, did you end up seeing that message? Jul 11, 2022 at 17:27
  • @ShadowTheKidWizard I don't think I've ever seen it still. Buuut I haven't asked a question for a while.
    – Rudie
    Jul 12, 2022 at 11:24

It was implemented in the past two months.

People felt that in order to help get rid of the fastest gun in the west problem, delaying the time until a user could accept an answer would give everyone a fair chance at answering it to the best of their ability.


To allow people enough time to answer, and allow enough answers to come in for you to choose the correct one.

  • When was this put in place? It has been a while since I asked a question on SO May 20, 2010 at 22:30
  • As far as I know it's been there forever... but I don't know that much ;-) May 20, 2010 at 22:53
  • Ah ha -- I was wrong. Thanks @Tradition! May 20, 2010 at 23:15

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .