First post on meta so, if i'm "doin' it wrong", I apologize.

I wanted to ask about the handling of questions with the following conditions:

  • Question raised by brand new member ( < 10 reputation? )
  • Answers provided that address issue
  • New member never bothers accepting an answer and closing the question

Could these be flagged for review to have an answer selected? I know it really only helps dole out reputation to people who answered, but I am just curious as to how these (and there seems to be quite a bit each day) questions get dealt with.

  • Have a look at this question and answers here to get a general impression. dba.meta.stackexchange.com/q/2684/15356 The mechanics work in general and shouldn't have to be enforced
    – John K. N.
    Mar 29, 2017 at 14:44
  • @hot2use I'm so glad I didn't ask his question! My-oh-my... #roasted!
    – Wes
    Mar 29, 2017 at 14:54

1 Answer 1


Only the original author of the question can accept an answer.

If they decide not to accept an answer, that's OK.

We prefer people to accept an answer, but we can't enforce it, or select an answer for them. Besides which, I have personally had old answers 'accepted' years after I wrote them.

If the user is truly new to Stack Exchange as a whole, it can be useful to leave a temporary comment encouraging them to accept an answer (perhaps linking to the help centre as below).

Accepting an answer doesn't close the question; new answers can still be added at any time. (The new answer might even be 'better' in the eyes of the question author; this is why the answer marked as accepted can be changed).

Given a clear question with good answers, the site is already winning. The lack of a green tick on one of them does not mean all that much.

The votes from the wider community are a usually a better guide to answer quality than the green tick anyway.

See also:

What does it mean when an answer is "accepted"? (help centre)
How to deal with abandoned questions?
Would it be possible to have a “community accepted” feature?

  • 1
    Thanks, Paul. I appreciate your answer (and gave it the green tick ;) )
    – Wes
    Mar 29, 2017 at 14:50
  • @Wes Ha! Normally people fail to accept an answer on such questions purely for the irony value. Don't forget you can change the accepted answer at any time, in case a better one comes along.
    – Paul White Mod
    Mar 29, 2017 at 14:52
  • 1
    I'm waiting for @BrentOzar to comment, then I'll RIP IT away from you and give it to him! jk.
    – Wes
    Mar 29, 2017 at 14:53
  • 3
    @Wes Fine. Absolutely fine. Though as I understand it, Brent doesn't currently have the power to ban you from the site for upsetting him ;) cough
    – Paul White Mod
    Mar 29, 2017 at 14:56
  • 2
    well crap. now I really have to weigh my actions... He does have the ability to shame me in hilarious fashion on his blog. Then again, so do you.
    – Wes
    Mar 29, 2017 at 14:57
    – Paul White Mod
    Mar 29, 2017 at 14:58
  • That is what life seems to keep reminding me :D
    – Wes
    Mar 29, 2017 at 15:08

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