I know that the bounty is there to make your question more relevant or popular, yes. And this is ALWAYS given, even if the question is not answered, i know. BUT if the question is not off topic and well written, I mean answereable in a normal way...why isn't the bounty refunded than? I just found that out by not getting my bounty back, I don't care about reputation but still I am questioning myself why.

edit after answer

So for me bounty is not the right name for whatever we give away here. Bounty means to me that you give something as a reward only when you get something else (answer) for it. Example...teacher asks: when did columbus discover america? who answers get 100 dollars.

no answer, teacher pays 100 to no one ;)

anyway now it's clear for me, the nobody is a rich guy, but he is not living on our planet.

1 Answer 1


Your question is a variation of this Meta and our FAQ:

The key quote is

All bounties are paid for up front and non-refundable under any circumstances.

Indeed, on Meta Stackoverflow this is described in detail and I'm quoting directly since it is succinct:

A bounty is not a guarantee. It's less risky in the new system, but it never has, nor ever will be, a guarantee for the answers you need. It's payment for a bid for an answer, not payment for actual answers themselves.

Remember that although you didn't get an actual answer, you did get 7 days on the Featured tab. If you got refunded, then you could keep your question on the Featured tab forever, which really reduces the benefit that placing a bounty has in the first place.

Basically, consider this like a parking meter - the reputation you spent is good enough for only 7 days. If you need more time, you need to spend more reputation. Of course, it's a parking meter where you can pay however much you want and get the same amount of time, but the extra payment is for the possibility of better quality attention during that same period.

  • of course i saw the question on meta, but it didn't give me my answer. even your answer doens't give me the right answer. I don't care if my question was on featured tab or not. Of course it boosts my questions and for every upvote my reputation so somehow it can payoff the bounty itself. BUT why don't I get it back when no one can answer it ? Sorry for my examples but there are some mathematical questions in life which are still unsolved. and every question reward is 1 million dollar. that bounty doesn't shrink and is payed as soon as the right answer appeared. Wouldn't it be great to follow?
    – Private
    Commented Sep 10, 2013 at 13:56
  • 1
    @Private - pop into the general chat-room to discuss - chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/201/ask-ubuntu-general-room
    – fossfreedom Mod
    Commented Sep 10, 2013 at 14:04
  • @fossfreedom I understand you! But I think it should be refunded if the question has no replies at all, not accepting an answer but at least a replay, if not even that refund. :)
    – Hrish
    Commented Oct 8, 2014 at 6:10
  • @Rishee - "A bounty is not a guarantee of an answer" - think of it as an advertisement. You are paying for the advert - but you are never guaranteed that anyone will actually respond to the advert.
    – fossfreedom Mod
    Commented Oct 9, 2014 at 15:55
  • @fossfreedom Thanks mate, for understanding and for giving your precious time to answer my query. It's really helpful for me as well as for all those who don't know about it. Thanks once again. :)
    – Hrish
    Commented Oct 10, 2014 at 2:01

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