Unfortunately, I haven't figured out whether this question is appropriate here. So I'm sorry if it is not. But nevertheless, here it is.

For example, I have a question. A problem, or maybe a piece of homework. As long as I am concerned, people here prefer to give small hints, instead of giving up answers straight away. I love that system, because it really educates you, you do not just copy answers, but also understand the way you get them.

But. If I was given a hint, then I started to work the theme out by myself which of course took a couple of days. After that, I'd like to ask for some new hints or just check my answer. I think it's not right to open a new discussion. How can I renew this question, put it on top of the list again just for users, who gave me instructions.

I'd like to apologize in advance if it's a silly question.

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    $\begingroup$ By the way, this question is very appropriate here. $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 18, 2012 at 5:46
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    $\begingroup$ To ping specific users, you can also use our comment reply mechanism $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 18, 2012 at 10:34
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    $\begingroup$ So how would one go about doing this on someone else's question, other than using a bounty? Just make a new question? $\endgroup$
    – Carl
    Commented Feb 29, 2012 at 7:45
  • $\begingroup$ @user1131662 Edit it. $\endgroup$
    – Pedro Mod
    Commented Mar 8, 2012 at 3:41
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    $\begingroup$ Related post on meta.SE: How do I get attention for old, unanswered questions? $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 3, 2016 at 13:15

4 Answers 4


You can edit the question to explain what you've done, where you're stuck or what your proposed solution is. When you edit a question, it moves to the top of the list of "active" questions. In my experience, this usually gets a question a fair amount of fresh attention.

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    $\begingroup$ Sure, thanks. Even though I re-edited mine a couple of times due to progress changes, I didn't get any more answers yet. It seems that noone is interested. $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 18, 2012 at 2:23

If you have worked out an answer to your question, you can also post it as an answer. If you're not yet sure it's correct, you could start with a disclaimer to that effect, and ask for feedback. You may just find one or more users willing to help improve your solution, which you can then edit to your satisfaction. You can even accept your own answer if that seems appropriate.

Here's an example where something like this happened: For every matrix $A\in M_{2}( \mathbb{C}) $ there's $X\in M_{2}( \mathbb{C})$ such that $X^2=A$?

You can also start bounties on your questions, but only to a limited extent until you spend more time building up points here.

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    $\begingroup$ To my great astonishment, a topic which I started gained a big amount of attention. There I was given a hint and what do i need to do next. It took me a couple of days to deal with this new challenge and then I edited my question asking if I'm doing fine. But unfortunately noone came up with any answers/comments. I decided to re-edit a topic again, deleted all my old questions. Same here. May I start a new theme just to make sure my answer's right? $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 18, 2012 at 10:50
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    $\begingroup$ @user1131662 I don't think that's a good idea to write a new post for verifying your answers. There's a possibility that your question may be tagged for possible duplicate. So, I'd suggest that you edit your previous question to add your answer. $\endgroup$
    – user21436
    Commented Jan 18, 2012 at 20:57
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks, finally the problem has been solved, I edited it again, maybe it became more specific and I succeeded $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 19, 2012 at 20:31
  • $\begingroup$ Jonas Meyer, do you disagree with amWhy or just_floating here? math.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/31934/… $\endgroup$
    – BCLC
    Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 19:18
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    $\begingroup$ @John Smith Kyon: I am not reading and forming an opinion on that. I don't necessarily agree with my post from Jan 2012 either. $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 28, 2020 at 14:05
  • $\begingroup$ Jonas Meyer, does the community wiki function make any difference? edited post. $\endgroup$
    – BCLC
    Commented Nov 22, 2020 at 8:18

If you want to attract users attention to an older question, you can also use a bounty. Detailed explanation of bounty system is given in this meta.SE post: How does the bounty system work? You can find some useful information in questions tagged on this meta. In particular, these two posts might also be interesting in case you are considering adding a bounty to a question Is bounty really guaranteeing more exposure? and How effective are bounties?

Mentioning a post on meta or bumping a question by an edit or new answer can also bring a several views to the question. But this should definitely not be misused. If the question serves as an illustration of the problem you discuss in your post on meta, it is perfectly ok to link to it. But you should not link to a question with the only intention to get more views. Similarly, if you have a valid reason to bump a post (e.g., correcting a typo, improving a post in some way, adding self-answer with an attempted solution) then definitely do not hesitate. But you should not bump a question solely for the purpose of getting it to the frontpage.

You should also be aware that if your question satisfies certain criteria, it may be bumped by the Community ♦ user without you having to do anything.

Another possible way to attract attention to an older question is to mention it in chat. At the moment, there is the main chatroom which is very active and used by many users. So here many people should notice your question, but only for a shorter period of time. (Since other new messages will come very quickly.) I will quote from Main Chatroom Guidelines:

If you asked your question on the main site, please don't post it on the chat. It will get a lot of exposure without that. If you do choose to post it, [title](http://link) is a better format; it is compact and easier on the eyes.

Many users do post links to their questions in this chatroom, so I think it is ok to break the above rule occasionally. (I'd say that the rules from the post I linked are not very well known and they are, as far as I can tell, not enforced in any way. But I still consider it to be good manners to read the rules of this particular chat room, before starting using it.)

But you should definitely post link in the recommended format to avoid oneboxing.

There are also other rooms associated with this site, so you can post your link in some of them. But only do so if the topic of the room fits your question. For example, do not post question about linear algebra in the room devoted to calculus or, even worse, to a room which has some very specific purpose. (For example, we have rooms for contacting moderators in case you need discuss things with them. This is not a room to advertise your question.)

At the moment other rooms than the main chatroom are not very active. So posting a link to your post there has a disadvantage that less users will see your links. On the other hand, less messages are posted in those room, so your link will probably be shown for a longer period of time.

You could also create a separate room for your question. There is a chance that somebody notices it and discusses the question with you in chat.

If you get some useful input about the old question in chat, it might be sometimes useful add link to the relevant message as a comment to the question or to an answer, if it was discussion related to one of the answers posted on your quesion. (Use your best judgement to decide, when a conversation from chat adds some useful information to your question or to some of the answers.)

In any case, you should not expect miracles from mentioning your question in chat. (But it is true about other suggestions - none of them guarantees that you get an answer.) In any case, it might at least improve your chances a bit.

  • $\begingroup$ I will add a link to a post which gives an overview of some chatrooms related to this site: List of chatrooms. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 17, 2021 at 7:18

Linking your questions could also help to get some attention, but should only be done when it's appropriate, of course.

AND: Be active! I think there are plenty of people, that scan through other people's (old) questions from time to time. But if you don't show up, they hardly notice you.


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