Would it be a good idea to allow users to optionally mark their questions in such a way that answers can be submitted but are not visible for some amount of time (e.g. 48 hours) after the question was originally posed?

Additionally, if there's concern that "frozen" questions will harm the community if overused perhaps they could have a price similar to how bounties work.

So, there's an arms race to answer questions quickly. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, and some types of question-askers like students probably appreciate quick responses.

However, as of right now, there's no way for an asker to opt out of the arms race. More specifically, they can't mark a question in such a way that none of the answers are visible until some amount of time has passed (e.g. 48 hours).

I imagine there's also a lot of answerers who would like to be able to contribute answers with less time pressure. I personally would like that, since I don't like answering without double-checking everything I've said.

  • Has such a suggestion come up before? (I've uncovered nothing searching Meta. This is the closest thing I can find.)
  • Is it a good idea to allow askers to do this?
  • Is it worth the added complexity / development time, if allowing opting into a "freeze" is even a good idea in the first place?


Previous proposals that recommended moving everyone over to a model similar to the one in this proposal (with a much shorter timeframe) are:

This humorous comment is also relevant:

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    $\begingroup$ I have added the (fastest-gun) tag, since the question seems to be related to this problem. (Feel free to remove the tag, if you do not consider it a good fit for the question.) $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 6, 2019 at 4:33
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    $\begingroup$ Here is an older post on this meta which seems related: Hide answers for a period immediately after a question is posted. (It is from 2013 - so it is rather old. However, I think that some objections raised there are still valid.) $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 6, 2019 at 4:34
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    $\begingroup$ Here is a suggestion on Meta Stack Exchange, but with much shorter period: Don't show the answers for the question in the first 2 minutes. $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 6, 2019 at 4:40
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    $\begingroup$ @MartinSleziak, Hrm. I should have searched for more than "delay" I guess. Thanks for linking the previous proposals. I think a big difference between what I'm suggesting and the other proposals so far is that I'm after an optional, opt-in alternative and specifically not suggesting changing the dominant way people interact with the site. Do you think what I'm suggesting is a duplicate, given the previous questions? $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 6, 2019 at 4:45
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    $\begingroup$ Well, not an exact duplicate as you point out. (I'll leave this for others to judge.) Still it might be worth looking at the objections raised to other similar proposals. The most relevant objection to me seems that for questions which are relatively easy and thus they mike quick answers, it seems likely that they might end up with many very similar answers. $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 6, 2019 at 4:52
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    $\begingroup$ I suggested an embargo on answers in a comment here: math.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/3183/… (search for "modest proposal") $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 6, 2019 at 10:07
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    $\begingroup$ @GerryMyerson you can get a link to a comment directly by clicking the time after the author's name. $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 10, 2019 at 6:05
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    $\begingroup$ @Gregory, like this? math.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/3183/… Excellent. $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 10, 2019 at 6:10
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    $\begingroup$ For the users who do not know the connotations of the phrase modest proposal used in @GerryMyerson's comment, I will add link to Wikipedia and Wiktionary. (Since I am not a native English speaker, it's perhaps not surprising that I missed the sarcasm when the linked comment was posted.) $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 10, 2019 at 6:27


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