So I was about to post a question and answer pair documenting some obscure configuration settings I'd found useful this afternoon, when I noticed this:

What the self-answer checkbox looks like on Server Fault

Uh... So what? This has been possible since Server Fault launched; over 1% of all questions on the site are self-answered. Why clutter up our pristine Ask form with this absurd UI?

  • Strange how a question asked by someone with a diamond gets upvoted when the same question be someone else would get downvoted. Commented May 19, 2012 at 4:49
  • @John: behold! The power of self-answering! (FWIW, there is one downvote at present)
    – Shog9
    Commented May 19, 2012 at 4:52
  • Yes, that's mine. I try to vote honestly, not according to rank. Commented May 19, 2012 at 4:55
  • 1
    @JohnGardeniers: The SE format doesn't really lend itself to making announcements, doing it this way is as good as it gets.
    – user9517
    Commented May 19, 2012 at 9:10
  • 2
    I understand why this has happened but it still seems like a strange design to me.
    – Rob Moir
    Commented May 19, 2012 at 15:08
  • @Iain, maybe this should be a feature request. I've previously asked for a "sticky" feature which keeps a post at the top of the list. That's a suitable substitute for a more conventional announcement and would be simplicity itself to code. I do of course assume the feature would be be available only to staff members and each post would have the sticky feature removed when appropriate. Commented May 21, 2012 at 10:53
  • I flagged this as belonging on MSO, where site wide issues are discussed. The flag was declined. Not by one of our elected moderators but by the OP himself. Commented May 24, 2012 at 7:03
  • It's already on MSO. It was on MSO first. I linked to the MSO question in the answer below, @John. If it seriously bugs you that this was announced here, then vote to close.
    – Shog9
    Commented May 24, 2012 at 7:06

2 Answers 2


Just because you know that this is possible and encouraged doesn't mean everyone does. New folks show up here every day, and maybe a few of them know something you don't - encouraging them to write about it benefits everyone.

Besides making this more obvious to folks who skimmed the FAQ, it also avoids the confusion inherent in seeing someone post a question, starting in on an answer, only to see them post the same thing half-way through. Naturally, other people can still post answers to questions you've self-answered - but by having your answer there from the start, they need not waste time duplicating your efforts, and can instead post only when they have something new to add, or think they can do a better job than you did.

More details on this can be found on Meta SO: What is this “answer your own question” jazz?

  • 5
    Oddly, I had the urge to downvote your question and upvote the answer.
    – Magellan
    Commented May 18, 2012 at 21:02

I like the way the answer box and other page elements fade in and out when you click and unclick "Answer your own question." Unfortunately, I spent 5 minutes looking at that and forgot to type my answer...

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