|After a period for voting including as a featured question, votes have been tallied on this question as of 16:50UTC on 19 October, and the results are as follows. Note that only upvotes have been counted as this is a binary choice. There is a clear winner.
The third option is interesting but was not part of the original SE proposal.
|The MSE question has been updated with this result.
Andrew Leach ♦
For the full background, please see this MSE question.
In short, currently, if the question-asker “accepts” one of the answers, that answer is “pinned” to the top position, shown to all visitors at the top of the page, the rest of the posts appearing in order of score, so that the highest voted post, if different, appears directly beneath it.
It was noticed on StackOverflow this caused problems for that site. The most pressing problem for SO, which is technically oriented, is that old, obsolete, or dangerously outdated answers could and would be shown before more updated or correct ones. SO posts often get thousands of views by voting users long after the original question is posted, and so new answers often rapidly accrue votes and over-take highly upvoted, previous, out-of-date answers. Therefore now SO shows answers (if using the default sort) strictly in descending score order.
This turned out to be popular for that particular site, and so now the Powers That Be are asking their other sites for their preferences.
So, do we want to take the option? Would you prefer the status quo, where the OP-accepted answer is shown first (except where the OP themself posted the answer, of course), or should we switch to strictly score-based sorting
To inform your decision, you can view the complete list of which answers would be affected on Main (6,888 answers; average score difference between accepted and top-voted = 4.6 pts) and Meta (137 answers; average score difference between accepted and top-voted = 4.25 pts). Note that the settings for Main and Meta are independent; we can unpin on Main and keep the pin on Meta, for example.
It would be best if answers to this question took a concrete, binary stance — keep pinned or unpin — and optionally, but encouraged, a rationale.
Mod note (Andrew Leach ♦): Because there is a binary stance, only vote up the answer you support. Only the upvotes on each stance will be counted. If you vote up one answer and vote down the other, you effectively double your vote, which is undesirable.