My faulty understanding of the bounty system may have caused me to mislead the poster, and this is what happened:

  • The post Initiate windows feature update after snoozing by user aggieNick02 had no answers.
  • User Ramhound added a bounty.
  • I answered and solved the problem.
  • User Ramhound indicated his unwillingness to award the bounty, since apparently it was done by mistake, with which the poster did not agree.
  • I assured the poster that by accepting an answer during the bounty period, the bounty will be automatically awarded.
  • But this did not happen.

Which condition for bounty awarding did I miss out on?

  • 1
    I did NOT start a bounty by mistake, I purposefully did not award the bounty, there is a huge difference. My reputation, my bounty, my rules.. I didn’t upvote your answer by the way. I only wanted to draw attention to the question. I often open a bounty and let the community decide by the way.
    – Ramhound
    Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 17:53
  • @Ramhound: You weren't the point. My question was about the behavior of the SU site.
    – harrymc
    Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 19:36
  • Well you specifically called me out, and indicated that I created the bounty by mistake, so I was making it clear the bounty wasn’t offered by mistake.
    – Ramhound
    Commented Dec 21, 2017 at 0:22
  • @Ramhound: I answered on the post in question, as this is unrelated to what I intended to ask here.
    – harrymc
    Commented Dec 21, 2017 at 10:04
  • Should have taken it into a chat.
    – Ramhound
    Commented Dec 21, 2017 at 14:55

2 Answers 2


From the bottom of the bounties page, which you can find in our help centre:

How is a bounty awarded?

The bounty period lasts 7 days. Bounties must have a minimum duration of at least 1 day. After the bounty ends, there is a grace period of 24 hours to manually award the bounty. Simply click the bounty award icon next to each answer to permanently award your bounty to the answerer. (You cannot award a bounty to your own answer.)

If you do not award your bounty within 7 days (plus the grace period), the highest voted answer created after the bounty started with a minimum score of 2 will be awarded half the bounty amount (or the full amount, if the answer is also accepted). If two or more eligible answers have the same score (their scores are tied), the oldest answer is chosen. If there's no answer meeting those criteria, no bounty is awarded to anyone.

If the bounty was started by the question owner, and the question owner accepts an answer posted during the bounty period, and the bounty expires without an explicit award then we assume the bounty owner liked the answer they accepted and award it the full bounty amount at the time of bounty expiration.

Your answer only has a score of 1 rather than a score of 2 as would be required for automatically awarding the bounty.

  • I have had many dozens of cases of posters accepting and not awarding, maybe around a hundred in all. Never did it happen that a bounty wasn't awarded, although in these cases it takes an additional time that could be as short as an hour or as long as one day, during which the bounty stays hanging. How is it that not one of these bounties was ever not awarded? And why wasn't the bounty here left hanging for even a minute? I'm puzzled. Maybe some inconsistencies in the forum software?
    – harrymc
    Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 9:40
  • Nope. Bounty was placed on the 12th, would have gone into grace on the 19th, and been cleared today. Looks consistent to me. No funny business, just business as usual. I expect your random "time left hanging for your bounty" is due to the whims of the bounty poster. I am not about to go trawling through all of your bounties to examine them on a case by case basis.
    – Mokubai Mod
    Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 9:53
  • 2
    Nothing about the behaviour is inconsistent with the posted info. "If the bounty was started by the question owner ..." outlines the exception @har
    – random Mod
    Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 16:49

Mokubai has marked this behavior "by design". From his quoted link and my own long experience here, I theorize that this is what happened.

At the beginning, SU functioned entirely according to the forum rules as quoted by Mokubai.

Then there was a complaint by members, myself included, that users were accepting answers but not understanding that awarding the bounty is a separate action, resulting in reputations being entirely or half-lost and some answerers not being rewarded for their efforts.

There was then done a correction to SU, so that acceptance during the bounty period caused the awarding of the bounty once it expired.

However, it seems that this correction was done in such a way that it applied only to bounties by the poster. For some reason, the case where the bounty was from another user was not included.

This case, being extremely rare, may not at all be worth fixing.

The author of this answer is not an acting member of SU and this answer is not official nor based on any real facts.

  • 2
    "this answer is not official nor based on any real facts." Indeed. Given you seem to be the number 1 Super User bounty hunter I thought you would have, by now, read the entire help page entitled What is a bounty? How can I start one?, which explains your faulty understanding ;)
    – DavidPostill Mod
    Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 17:52
  • "At the beginning, SU functioned entirely according to the forum rules as quoted..." I'm confused. Are you suggesting the rules here quoted were in effect at the beginning, or that some other rules were, then subsequently changed to be what they are now? Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 18:12
  • @TwistyImpersonator: Yes, they were changed because of user pressure, and it was a long process in which I have taken part. I got then exactly the same criticism about my ignorance of forum rules.
    – harrymc
    Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 20:30
  • @DavidPostill: One doesn't re-read the rules repeatedly, and my intention was also to understand why this was going on, not only the what. I might start another discussion, more to the point which is puzzling me.
    – harrymc
    Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 20:41
  • 1
    'forum' we ain't ever been no forum....
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 23:33
  • 2
    Also, I set it by design not mokubai - because it is.
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Commented Dec 21, 2017 at 1:07
  • @JourneymanGeek: So what are we?
    – harrymc
    Commented Dec 21, 2017 at 10:03
  • A Q&A site. I'd assure you neither the mods nor the company which owns SU has changed that at any point of time. There's a few fundamental differences in how we run the place as a result
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Commented Dec 21, 2017 at 11:30
  • @JourneymanGeek: OK, I will be careful to use "site" instead of "forum", although by definition I think a Q&A site is a specialized Internet forum.
    – harrymc
    Commented Dec 21, 2017 at 11:54
  • 1
    @harrymc from that definition a forum "is an online discussion site where people can hold conversations in the form of posted messages" We don't want discussions on subjects and whatever discussions or conversations happen in comments should be moved into a contained answer or eventually deleted. We are specifically a Question and Answer site.
    – Mokubai Mod
    Commented Dec 24, 2017 at 15:44
  • @Mokubai: Question of terminology - we do discuss problems and solutions.
    – harrymc
    Commented Dec 24, 2017 at 16:13
  • Well, one of the founders of Stack Exchange said "I hated web forums when they started becoming popular", so it is definitely not. The Stack Exchange sites are not forums (fora?). They are think tanks. Commented Dec 28, 2017 at 16:30
  • @PeterMortensen: Everybody has his own definition, trying to distinguish SU/SO from anything else. Fora can have specialized rules, so are in effect a generic term, large enough to encompass Q&A.
    – harrymc
    Commented Dec 28, 2017 at 17:46

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