Lately I've been getting some good answers to some specific questions. However, I've been hesitating on what answer I should accept.

Do I go with the short quick answer or do I accept a later answer where someone has elaborated on the previous answer with some code?

It's not really important but it kind of bugs me to not accept an answer when people have taken the trouble of replying.

Here's two examples:

Is there a way to get the order of attributes/fields in an instance?

Standard practise for ajax request page output?


I would upvote them both, but accept the better one regardless of the order in which they were submitted. Doing anything else encourages that long-answerer to say next time "I won't bother, someone else has a terse answer that isn't wrong." You want to reward the explanations and examples, if they make a better answer than the short one.

  • 2
    I agree. I was thinking along the lines of rewarding the user when the idea is to actually encourage quality. The downside would be that the second person might have picked up on the first answer. However, if the second person is capable of understanding it and providing something more complete then I'd say that their answer stands on it's own. – James P. Jun 4 '11 at 17:51
  • I agree with this and it is better for the site in general but my experience is that most people don't follow this principle in either voting or accepting. Which is bad since it encourages fast, correct but only okay answers and is discouraging for those who want to write better quality answers. – Shafik Yaghmour Nov 4 '13 at 16:00

Accept the answer that helped you more. Accepting an answer just mean that: The answer has been more useful to you than the other answers you got for your question. There aren't any objective parameters to choose an answer, except the answer should be correct.

If you are not sure which answer to accept, you could accept the answer with the higher score (the difference between the up-votes and the down-votes).

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