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[This is similar in nature to Adrian's question/bulletin How can we encourage more voting? Only more focused on voting on answers.]

I've been on a personal quest to get this site's percentage of questions answered into the 90th percentile. When I started 3 days ago, we were at 86.3% or so and as the time of writing this we are at 87.4%.

If you don't know, the percentage (P) is calculated using the number of questions (Q) displayed here and the number of answers without an upvote (A) displayed here (note: this is not even about the Asker marking an answer as correct).

(Q - A) / Q = P

So, to increase the percentage, we just need to answer questions and upvote GOOD answers. That requires, at minimum, two users involved since you can't upvote your own answers.

You don't need to share my current obsession on this, but I'm wondering how we can encourage other experienced users (like these folks and these too) to answer and upvote?

From Area 51 EE Area 51

  • Can someone from SE confirm how the percent answered value is calculated. Is it from no upvoted answers or just no answers? – Stephen Callender Oct 31 '13 at 18:12
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I've noticed you posting lots of answers:) I'm traveling until next week but will start helping you with your quest when I'm back working next week.

I've been regularly tweeting a link to the unanswered page of questions which draws traffic and reminds folks to check into the site.

Lots of folks haven't used StackExchange before and don't understand how things "work". Might be nice to put together a series of short screen casts to highlight certain parts of the site... The challenge is that we can't link them anywhere on the site so are stuck posting to Twitter.

  • I like the idea of getting some screencasts up, unfortunately I don't have the time to do it justice. – Jeremy Worboys Oct 23 '13 at 4:33
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    Thanks for your support! :) Maybe we should use this link more often: expressionengine.stackexchange.com/about – Stephen Callender Oct 23 '13 at 12:10
  • Keep up the nudging on Twitter @Anna_MediaGirl. When I see them I usually head on over and answer a question. I hadn't thought of checking existing answered questions for validity. Maybe a 2 tweet attack is needed :D – Elliot Lewis Jan 23 '14 at 12:25
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This is a good question. I notice a lot of questions sit in the unanswered list with a valid answer(s), but no upvotes. Sometimes I go through these and look for decent answers which deserve an upvote, and that removes them from the list which is nice and easy.

You'll also notice that a user called "Community" goes through and randomly bumps questions with answers that haven't been upvoted to the homepage, which is pretty smart and means people are more likely to view them and upvote an answer.

I think an important question to ask though, isn't so much "how can we get more answers?", but "why are some questions not receiving answers?". Are the questions too difficult or too specific to answer? Why hasn't the original author come back and posted their solution? I'd much rather see our site have a high barrier to entry for questions, but have all questions receive good answers, so it's probably worth spending some time thinking how we can be more thorough going through and closing questions which are not possible to answer, or asking the original author for more information.

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    You've made think of two more questions: (1) For questions that are related to specific product releases (i.e., bugs), if the fix is a new release but there's no answer, couldn't we just an answer to update to the latest release? It's seems only reviewers would think to go back and do this. (2) For questions like this one -- expressionengine.stackexchange.com/questions/5425/… -- where the answer is only reported in a comment, isn't it good if we repeat that answer as actual answer? – Stephen Callender Oct 26 '13 at 2:11
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    One more. I've noticed that P&T doesn't do the best job answering questions related to its products even though its support page says "we're actively following" tagged questions. There are at lease 39 question without answers with the pixelandtonic tag. expressionengine.stackexchange.com/questions/tagged/… – Stephen Callender Oct 26 '13 at 2:54
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    Re P&T (and we/Expresso are probably guilty of this too) I don't think people should post on EESE and expect to receive an official answer, that would be to the detriment of our community. All add-on devs provide support here and via private channels. I did go through a few of those questions though and Brandon/Brad/Andris/Lisa have at least commented on most of them. – Adrian Macneil Oct 26 '13 at 4:54
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    To answer your first comment though, yes if there is an answer in a comment (or the fix is in a new version) it's a good idea to re-post this as an answer, as that makes it easy for visitors to find the answer in the expected place rather than trawling through comments. Also that way when someone upvotes your answer the question will be removed from the unanswered list. – Adrian Macneil Oct 26 '13 at 4:55

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