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I'm not sure, how the closing of old, without activity, question works, but shouldn't there be a time limit, until the moderators (by voting among themselves?) are allowed to accept a valid answer to not answered questions?

Edit: Would it be possible to create a 2nd type of answer, with a different visual, just for this purpose. A community answer for questions without activity for 1 year where moderators would accept an answer by voting on it. All the users would see that answer as being accepted not by the OP, but by the community. And/or some could be removed automatically from the unanswered queue after 1 year without activity. To prevent unwanted deletion, the user would be warned by e-mail and, if unanswered, it would signal to automatically delete the question.

Edit2: Maybe I've expressed myself poorly. I'm not talking about whether the highest voted answer is accepted. I'm proposing a method to solve the ever increasing unanswered number of questions (e.g. those by 1 rep users done 3 years ago) that keep 'ruining' the stats of the CV community. I'm not saying that the community should superimpose on the user. I'm saying the community should be able to accept valid answers to dead questions, or delete them, since they are nothing but clutter in the site. If I try to search for certain things, those questions pop up, they don't help me at all.

Should there be a time limit on a question, where the OP has no activity, until moderators are allowed to accept answers?

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Accepted means accepted by the original poster (OP) of the question: that's an SE-wide definition easy to understand.

The main consequence of good answers not being accepted is some lost reputation for those who posted those answers.

Not what you are talking about, but I will add that the main consequence of the best answers not being accepted, but some other answer being accepted, is also some lost reputation for those who posted them. Here "best" can be highest voted (community verdict) or just your personal view of what is best.

Win some, lose some: it is only a game. Like many relatively active people here, I can find several answers of mine that were the only answer and/or the highest voted answer but were not accepted. Oh well, I don't care. Who should care and why?

If you see threads where someone lost out because of lack of acceptance, and there are probably hundreds if not thousands, your upvote adding 10 to a reputation is worth 2/3 as much as the OP's acceptance adding to 15, and two such upvotes from two people are worth more. That's the way that the community shows favour.

I'll add also giving bounties as a way to right mild wrongs.

In short, acceptance by the OP and community approval by upvoting and bounties are quite separate and different roads to rising reputation. There is no need to blur the difference by asking for something in between.

The moderators must speak for themselves, but my wild guess is that they wouldn't want this responsibility either. It's not the job of moderators to decide what is best or even what is correct.

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  • $\begingroup$ Maybe I've expressed myself poorly. I'm not talking about whether the highest voted answer is accepted. I'm proposing a method to solve the ever increasing unanswered number of questions (e.g. those by 1 rep users done 3years ago) that keep 'ruining' the stats of the CV community. I'm not saying that the community should superimpose on the user. I'm saying the community should be able to accept dead questions, or delete them, since they are nothing but clutter in the site. If I try to search for certain things, those questions pop up, and they don't help me at all. $\endgroup$ – An old man in the sea. Jun 19 '16 at 13:57
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    $\begingroup$ @Anoldmaninthesea., an "unanswered question" isn't a question w/ an answer that isn't accepted, it is a question that doesn't have any answers that are either upvoted or accepted. If there is a question w/ an answer that you think is reasonable, if you upvote it, that thread is no longer counted as "unanswered" & won't affect our stats. In addition, threads that are closed don't count as "unanswered". So if you find an old thread that seems unclear etc, you can vote / flag to close it. If it becomes closed, that's the end of it. $\endgroup$ – gung Jun 19 '16 at 14:57
  • $\begingroup$ @gung Ok, I'll try to follow your recomendation $\endgroup$ – An old man in the sea. Jun 19 '16 at 15:00
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If I try to search for certain things, those questions [dead questions] pop up, they don't help me at all.

Your suggestion (system/mod accepting Qs) would not make those dead and unhelpful questions to go away. If a dead question has a valid/useful answer, upvote it so it can be removed from the unanswered questions tab (if possible and necessary, also edit the question for better quality).

If it is a dead question (with unhelpful answers or without answers) make the difference by pushing some of those questions to cross the Stack Exchange auto delete bot. For example, take a look at my answer in Why was my question deleted if It was not even on hold nor closed?.

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