I have noticed that several of the questions in the "unanswered questions" section actually have reasonable answers in the comments. Others have been there for many years without an answer, and it seems to be unlikely that any answer will be given. This makes it annoying when you want to browse through popular unanswered questions, since the same ones come up the front every time and you have to scroll through many pages before seeing anything new.

I suppose the first problem can be solved by someone going through the questions and adding answers that replicate the answers in the comments. But this still leaves the problem of old questions clogging up the top results. In view of this, does anyone here have any objection if an enterprising individual were to go through questions that are too old (e.g., older than say, three years) and add an "answer" that merely flags them as old questions so that they no longer appear in the unanswered questions section?

Is this a good idea? Terrible idea? Heresy?

Update: Some commentators have now pointed out some related discussion and tips for advanced searches that can be used to bypass this problem.

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    $\begingroup$ Sorry; but on your last proposal: artificial answers are not good answers. More crucially, they won't be accepted if the OP doesn't notice them (very likely in the circumstances you describe) and they won't be upvoted if they aren't genuine. $\endgroup$
    – Nick Cox
    Commented Feb 8, 2018 at 23:30
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    $\begingroup$ You can post answers based on comments; just give credit. You can flag (or with a bit more reputation, vote-to-close) questions that have problems which would lead to not getting answers (like being vague or broad or off topic). Outside answering questions or removing ones that we have some grounds to, you may be able refine your search criteria a little using the search facility, or by querying the database. $\endgroup$
    – Glen_b
    Commented Feb 8, 2018 at 23:49
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    $\begingroup$ I agree w/ @NickCox that the strategies you suggest can't really work & shouldn't be tried. That said, I do agree w/ the thought that lies behind them. Here are a couple places I have brushed up against these issues: Should the standards for closing questions be relaxed somewhat for old questions?, & Are we seeing a dramatic drop in answers per question? $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 9, 2018 at 2:41
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    $\begingroup$ Also, upvote the good unanswered questions to make them stand out. $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 12, 2018 at 8:48

1 Answer 1


To see unanswered questions created last month, just use the search expression

 created:1m answers:0

Then you can add other search terms to refine, for example

 created:1m answers:0 logistic

(which for me now gives 68 hits). To read more about refining search, look at https://stats.stackexchange.com/search and click on "Advanced Search Tips".

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    $\begingroup$ Thanks @kjetil - that is very helpful. $\endgroup$
    – Ben
    Commented Feb 9, 2018 at 21:28

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