What can we do with unanswered questions? There are many questions with answers that are not selected as correct/needed answer; some just end up with comments only.

Community user bumps those answers to the front page to bring attention. What can we do to avoid this?

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2 Answers

up vote 4 down vote accepted

First off, an answer that is accepted from the OP is not a correct answer: It is just the answer that helped the OP. Accepting an answer is a rather subjective act; just the OP can know which of the answers helped her/him the most, or if the only existing answer helped her/him in some way.

The Community user bumps some of the questions without an accepted answer, or without answers with a score higher than 0. The reason to do this is to put the attention on those questions, but the possible actions to take are not just one, and (most importantly) there isn't any way to avoid the Community user bumps questions to the front page. What can be done is avoiding the question is bumped again on the front page, if something can be done; otherwise, a bumped question isn't a problem.

When we see a bumped question, we should:

  • Verify the question is clear. If there is missing information, we should leave a comment asking to the OP the missing information. This would allow other users to answer the question, or other users to vote the post that better answers the question, considering the new information given.
  • Verify the question is not one that should be closed. Questions that ask for links (e.g. links for tutorials), opinions, shopping recommendations, or are too subjective are not welcome on Stack Exchange.
  • Verify if any of the answers contains just a link. Those type of questions are not welcome on Stack Exchange. If the question asks for links, though, it is the question that needs to be closed, not the answers that need to be deleted.
  • Verify if any of the answer is correct. If an answer is wrong, or contains something that is not exactly correct, we should leave a comment.
  • Try to give an answer, if none of the existing answers completely answer the question, or miss an important point that needs to be done.
  • If there is a question that is correct, up-vote it.

The important is understanding that in some cases there isn't anything that can be done: For example, if the question is missing an information that you would need to answer it, and the OP is not checking the site since months, there is nothing that can be done.
With this I mean that we should not be voting answers, or closing questions as too localized when they are not, just to avoid they are automatically bumped to the front page.

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The stackexchange engine categories an unanswered question, as question with no answers that have a score of 1 or better.

Since many users will ask a question, get an answer and then leave the site, many questions will not get an answer with a checkmark. This is not a problem, since community upvotes can show an answer to be good/correct.

Lastly there are all of the questions that have never gotten a good answer or nobody bothered to upvote it. I think for the most time questions are answered, but it can take a great deal of time to figure out a question read the answer and know if it's good or not, since Drupal is so complex.

You should note that the community user bringing attention to old questions is a feature and not something that we should aim to avoid.

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So we just leave them ? –  Nikhil M Dec 4 '12 at 9:10
    
@NikhilM, No you do one of the above: Either upvote existing good answer or answer yourself :) –  googletorp Dec 4 '12 at 11:41
    
Yeah i know that. Let me understand the answers. None to upvote my question ? :( –  Nikhil M Dec 4 '12 at 11:58
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