We all want to conquer that maddening advertisement, but haven't found a cure for the persistent habit of "humbly" answering questions in comments. Fine reasons for the answer-by-comment strategy are duly noted, but don't we all agree that some follow up Answer should, well, follow up?
Two ideal scenarios, with user NewB the asker and Mr. Wizard (no disrespect) the commenter, are:
- NewB posts a self-answer after reading a useful comment, and nobody notices (
ReputationGain -> 0).
- Mr. Wizard posts a real answer later, and NewB doesn't follow protocol (
ReputationGain -> 0) or does (
\[Infinity] + ReputationGain \. ReputationGain -> 15).
An alternative scenario, involving a fledgling user Ian (just sayin'), offers real incentive:
- Ian translates Mr. Wizard's comment into an Answer, and comments on the original question (
@Mr. Wizard I fleshed out your helpful comment into an answer.). The benevolent Mr. Wizard is notified and upvotes Ian's answer (
ReputationGain -> 10).
The alternative scenario incentivizes middling reputation users to search out and "answer" the easy questions, and they (we) learn stuff along the way! Without participation from the answer-by-commenters however (and you do feel a little guilty, don't you?), I doubt many will work for these lessons alone.
My demonstration/experiment is in progress! What do you think?
Sample size is now two. Should be enough for solid inference.
Keywords/phrases for searchability:
Turning another user's comment into an answer