I have asked a question on SO which got a couple of answers, none of which I was willing to accept. After a while, I lost interest in the question. What's the proper thing to do?

None of the below choices seem quite right:

  1. Do nothing, letting the question remain without an accepted answer forever.
  2. Accept a random answer.
  • Hmm, 152938, rings a bell... Nov 14, 2010 at 20:09
  • @Hans: user ID's are usually not the same throughout the SE sites.
    – user138231
    Nov 14, 2010 at 20:55
  • For clarification: A question does not remain "unanswered" just because you do not accept one. The questions under the "unanswered" tab are answered (and removed from that view) when they receive an answer with at least on up-vote. Nov 15, 2010 at 4:08
  • @Hans: I am not "user152938" at Stack Overflow.
    – user152938
    Nov 15, 2010 at 18:56
  • yeah, the ID on the various sites is visible via the profile, Accounts tab :) Nov 16, 2010 at 8:22

1 Answer 1


If there was no good answer, do nothing. Don't accept an answer until it gets a good answer or forever: whichever comes first.

If there was a good answer and you're just being too picky, lower your standards and pick the best one.

Under no circumstances choose a random answer (unless they're all good and equally so - highly unlikely unless they're all dupes in which case you should [I think] choose the first to avoid rewarding dupes).

Of course if it's not a good question, you could make it better. And don't forget about the bounty. Maybe you should provide a link to it for more information.

You could also try communicating to the answerers why their answers do not suffice. It could be that one of them will be willing to improve their answer to an acceptable level.

  • @aaronasterling - won't it cause the OP acceptance rate to go down? From what I see people always push OP's to mark something as correct to keep their AR high.. Nov 15, 2010 at 9:25
  • 1
    @Shadow Wizard: Sure will. However, if you keep your AR up to a reasonable level you won't have problems. Just don't ask questions and then ignore them. If you ask too many questions that get answers that are upvoted but aren't good for you, you may need to improve your question-asking skill. Nov 15, 2010 at 17:05
  • The problem here is that Community will periodically poke unanswered questions to bring them back to the front page.
    – Powerlord
    Nov 15, 2010 at 19:49
  • @R.Bemrose, How is that a problem? Maybe it will get a good answer. Nov 15, 2010 at 21:57
  • @David: Or stop asking niche questions. :-) (Most, if not all, of my questions for which I have yet to receive an acceptable answer fall into that category.)
    – RobH
    Nov 16, 2010 at 3:29

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