A participant has posted quite a few questions which he has answered immediately. Now, while I don't doubt that this can be beneficial (he seems to be getting up-votes), it also strikes me as disingenuous. It is almost as if the purpose of the question is not to get an answer, but rather, to exposit his own views/opinions. If this were stackoverflow, then it would be more than expected that his question would have some form of disclaimer stating that he was asking the question specifically so that it would be answered (such as the edit on this question).

Is this something which needs moderation? It strikes me as against the general intent of SE sites.

  • 1
    Which participant? I'd like to evaluate for myself.
    – Jim G.
    Mar 24, 2012 at 19:21
  • 1
    Probably me. Guilty as charged, but I really am doing it out of pure motives. Mar 24, 2012 at 23:36
  • 2
    I don't see a problem at all. More questions and answers => more useful resources here => more visitors => greater chance of success for this site! Hooray! And we can still vote up or down the questions and answers, and post our own answers. Rejoice, this participant is doing hard work to make this site a success, and we can join in! Mar 28, 2012 at 10:09

2 Answers 2


Early on, I was encouraged to do exactly this based on this blog post from Jeff Atwood.

After doing it a few times, I also found an unexpected side benefit - I get more information. I wouldn't have thought to ask, but in asking, I learned a lot more. I posted my question about the definition of ark, because it was something that (a) I found interesting (b) thought was on-topic and (c) thought was of benefit to others.

What was AWESOME was that I learned more in the process - that while the English word may be the same, it wasn't that case in the Scripture. I'm glad that I had my assumptions challenged - and you'll notice, I rewarded that answer with the Acceptance criteria.

The same was true of the Onan question. By being willing to put "what I thought I knew" out there, Peter Turner taught me about the Catholic understanding of sex. I apologize if it seems disingenuous, but I sincerely encourage additional feedback and competing answers. As a matter of habit, I prefer not to accept my own answers and am eager to reward competing ones.

  • 2
    You've been an outstanding participant (arguably the best). I see no need for you to change.
    – Jim G.
    Mar 25, 2012 at 10:00

In general, asking and self answering is quite acceptable. As long as the question and range of possible answers is of a sort that the community she's is off future value to other visitors, this practice is even encouraged.

Evaluating the possible motives of a user sounds like an unwise plan to me, but if you would like us to considers specific set of questions and whether they are value contributions and why/why not I'm sure meta folks are up for it.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .