Why are questions worth more than answers?

March 20, 2011 at 09:44:23
Specs: Windows Vista

I was looking at my progress page, and saw that asking a question was worth almost 4 times as much as an answer. Is that because you can just throw an answer to any question without knowing what you're talking about? Or is it because a question is needed to post an answer to?

I was just wondering, I found it interesting.

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March 20, 2011 at 10:39:20

There are a variety of reasons questions are worth more than answers. The main one is this: points are trying to show your level of activity on the site. Most people ask a question or two. However, people answering questions answer tons of them. For this reason, even with the current points system, active question "answer-ers" on the site will rapidly get many more points than people who ask questions.

I realize that this is open to abuse, but, here again, it is much easier to find abusive question "askers" than abusive "answer-ers." There are significant penalties for having questions (and answers) removed. For that reason, abuse isn't that much of a concern as of yet.


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March 20, 2011 at 11:22:11
Ah. Thanks.

I see your reasoning on how answerers would rack up points faster- I just answered about 5 questions today. And it is easier to find bad questions than answers. You find questions like "my monitor has gone weird, help asap". It gets annoying.

Thanks again.

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March 20, 2011 at 19:04:33

Yup... Now you see the method to the madness :)


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Related Solutions

April 3, 2011 at 18:05:55
I frankly don't see why questions get any points at all. A great percentage of questions are poorly formed, if not barely literate. And yet they pull down, IIRC, four times the points of the guy who sits down and tries to answer the question.

A very high percentage of questioners are hit and run, and can't be bothered to click on the Rec button, let alone offer verbal thanks for a solution. I think some thought could be given to a more reasonable merit-based feedback system for those who try to answer.

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April 4, 2011 at 01:50:54
I agree with the idea of merit-based feedback. Back to the "Best Answer" system on Tom's Hardware that I have mentioned elsewhere.

It seems ludicrous to me that any post counts towards medals, however inappropriate, erroneous, and unhelpful it may be. To know that 50 people have found someone's solutions about, for example, Linux to be the best answer to their question is surely more relevant than to know that someone has posted 500 times in the Linux forum.

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