I find it a little annoying that users can "protect" bad questions with bounties but the ability to do this to your own question seems like a particularly blatant loophole. ELU does not close questions very quickly and I've now hit this problem twice in the past few weeks.

Why does adding a bounty on your own question prevent it from being voted closed?

  • Ahh, MrHen... Canst thou, O partial sleep, give thy repose To the wet sea-boy in an hour so rude, And in the calmest and most stillest night, With all appliances and means to boot, Deny it to a king? Then happy low, lie down! Uneasy lies the head that would wear a crown. Mar 24, 2014 at 9:19
  • I was about to post a similar question when I found this one. I agree 100% that bounty should not preclude closing.
    – Jim
    Jan 2, 2016 at 19:14

1 Answer 1


Because deciding what to do with the bounty when closing is a rather complicated issue, and any automatic ways to either refund or destroy the reputation used for a bounty simply with close votes would be abusable. Closing is a reversible action, posting a bounty isn't because a large part of the value of a bounty is in the increase exposure a question gets when featured.

This should not be an issue in the vast majority of cases anyway, bad questions should be closed inside 2 days, and before that no bounty can be offered.

In rare cases where this still is a problem, a moderator can refund the bounty and then close the question.

  • Could you elaborate on the "complicated issue" I freely admit I do not understand the algorithms in use. I naively assumed that points for bounty came out of the person's rep who set the bounty and therefore refunding it should be easy- apparently not so. But if a moderator can refund the bounty why can't "the machine"?
    – Jim
    Jan 2, 2016 at 19:17

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