According to Mi Yodeya rules, once someone has offered a bounty it cannot be reversed. My issue with this is, that sometimes no adequate answer has been given and one is still forced to give the bounty. Could there be an option, that if a moderator agrees that the question hasn't been answered adequately that the bounty is removed?

1 Answer 1


This is the way the bounty system works across the Stack Exchange network, and it is deliberate. To quote from the FAQ on the network Meta site:

Part of what you're "paying for" with a bounty is for higher question visibility and increased answerer motivation. A bounty does not guarantee a response and is not refunded if none are received.

And from a post there that more directly deals with this:

It's payment for a bid for an answer, not payment for actual answers themselves.

The way this mechanism works is not something that local moderators have any control over, and is almost certainly not going to change anytime soon.

That said, there is a "workaround" that some users have used on various sites on the network. Instead of officially setting a bounty, in which case the reputation is deducted immediately, they post on the local Meta site that they will give a bounty if anyone satisfactorily answers the question. While this does not provide the same benefit of being featured on the site's homepage, it may still provide the motivation to other users to invest time and effort in finding an answer.

To prevent it from getting out of hand, and to keep it organized, these "bounties" are usually combined into one Meta post.

Here are some examples from sites across the network:

https://codegolf.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/5243/list-of-bounties-with-no-deadline https://puzzling.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/4399/list-of-bounties-with-no-deadlines https://literature.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/1091/list-of-bounties-with-no-deadline

  • So why don't Mi Yodeya offer bounties without deadlines as well?
    – MiZeh
    Aug 1, 2021 at 17:56
  • @MiZeh Sites don't offer bounties. Individual users do.
    – Alex
    Aug 1, 2021 at 18:35
  • I understand that. But there is no option on Mi Yodeya for someone to make a bounty which does't expire - Mi Yodeya should give that option
    – MiZeh
    Aug 1, 2021 at 18:41
  • @MiZeh It’s not a specific option; if someone wants to it they just post on Meta.
    – Alex
    Aug 1, 2021 at 18:51
  • “The way this mechanism works is not something that local moderators have any control over” this is incorrect. Moderators can refund bounties, and while they normally only do it in exceptional cases, when they do it is up to the moderators. Sep 14, 2021 at 17:04
  • @EkadhSingh-ReinstateMonica Refunding bounties is for rare exceptions. The typeof case you are talking about is not an exception, it’s how the system is meant to work.
    – Alex
    Sep 14, 2021 at 18:18
  • @Alex sure, but the moderators can ignore that rule and change the way the system works. Sep 14, 2021 at 18:19
  • @EkadhSingh-ReinstateMonica That would likely be reported as an abuse of moderator power.
    – Alex
    Sep 14, 2021 at 18:21
  • @Alex if all the moderators agree on it they can make it a site policy, in which case it’s a policy, not an abuse Sep 14, 2021 at 18:23
  • @EkadhSingh-ReinstateMonica Moderators don’t make site policies.
    – Alex
    Sep 14, 2021 at 18:23

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