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I asked for advice a while back in a question here.

And I ended up acting on said advice, in a way that actually had a positive outcome.
I'd like to put this somewhere, to show the people who answered that their advice mattered.

How would I go about this? Commenting on each answer seems excessive, updating my question doesn't really add to the question. Adding another answer seems self-indulgent. And might come off as a grab for attention.

17

Add it to your question but flag it clearly as an update, e.g.

UPDATE - took the following actions, based on the answers below from x, y and z, and achieved the following outcomes...

People are interested in hearing how things worked out, especially if it worked out, and this way you're referencing the answers that assisted, giving credit where it's due and reinforcing the effect of those answers.

  • I did this, I might add the names of whose advice made what impact afterwards, but I feel like I'm already adding too much as is. – Reaces Jul 29 '15 at 18:11
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    I agree with this, one of the things which I like the most about this site is how meaningful it is on people's REAL LIFE. It's not just a code question, it's real life issues. Having real life "how did this work?" tacked onto a question might be really beneficial (like it was in your case). – enderland Jul 31 '15 at 20:28
  • I agree that it's helpful to know, but I disagree that it belongs as part of the question itself. It should either be a comment on the question, a comment on the answer whose advice you followed, or an answer itself (if you didn't follow any one answer's advice). – V2Blast Oct 4 '18 at 2:47
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I don't see why you think adding a new answer is "self-indulgent". Stack Exchange explicitly encourages self-answered questions. Try and work your experiences into an answer - how did you decide to go with one approach rather than another etc.

I think an answer is better than an update to the question as it clearly separates the original problem from the solution - if you update a question with "here's my answer", it's going to discourage anyone in future from posting an answer to the question.

  • Because I received several good answers, one of which I accepted. My answer won't really add anything simply summarize parts of the other answers with the benefit of hind-sight. And I believe that any answer should add information to the question, otherwise it's simply noise. – Reaces Jul 29 '15 at 11:28
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    If it's not going to add value, don't write anything. This isn't a discussion forum - we don't need "thanks, this helped" messages or the like as that's what we've got upvotes and accepted answers for. – Philip Kendall Jul 29 '15 at 11:35
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    Is it though? I mean, for other parts of stack exchange I very much agree. But for the workplace it might help to know how things panned out for someone else. And in most other parts of stack exchange you know something helped if it was the accepted answer. In the workplace you just don't really know if it helped or not, you just know the author agrees with your advice. – Reaces Jul 29 '15 at 11:38
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    I see @Reaces point; a subject like TWP doesn't have a clear feedback loop for whether or not something worked the way computers do. As a result, updating to say "This thing worked well in the real world!" is actually a big help to the community. I recommend adding an update to the question because if you summarize in a new question, it takes some of the shine away from your existing answerers. My $.02. – Ana Jul 29 '15 at 15:05
  • I agree that it's helpful to know, but I disagree that it belongs as part of the question itself. It should either be a comment on the question, a comment on the answer whose advice you followed, or an answer itself (if you didn't follow any one answer's advice). – V2Blast Oct 4 '18 at 2:48
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Personally, I prefer the way IPS.SE (the Interpersonal Stack Exchange) handles it.

A relevant question from IPS.meta.SE: How should a question asker explain the results of using specific advice?

In cases like this, where the asker of a question tries out advice and finds some sort of a result, how should they share this with the rest of the community? I have some ideas:

  • In comments below an answer, if they took the advice mainly from one answer.
  • In a self-answer, if the approach was different enough.
  • In a short edited section in the question body.

And Catija's highly upvoted answer:

I'm really not a fan of adding "what I did" to the question. It's not part of the question. It's a solution and belongs in the answers. So, that being said, option three is out.

Option 1 is good (along with accepting the answer) if you really did just use the advice from that question - assuming you can keep it brief.

If you went with a completely different solution or a combination of them, I'd go with option two, I'd write a self-answer and explain what you did and what the result was.

This is what I always encourage on Cooking as many users ask for help there and then either

  • Don't get an answer at all so they do some testing and come back with the results
  • They get an answer that isn't based on evidence and, upon testing, get a different result
  • They get an answer and it worked for them (so they post a comment on the answer and accept it).

So, in short, I'd recommend the following:

  • If you found one particular answer to be helpful and followed their advice, accept that answer and explain the outcome/aftermath as a comment on that answer.
  • If you found none of the answers to be the most helpful, leave an answer on your question explaining what you ended up doing and how it worked out. If you actually followed the advice of multiple different answers (fairly equally) rather than any single answer, you can give credit for those suggestions in your answer.
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    "explain the outcome/aftermath as a comment on that answer." - we've been told repeatedly that comments are temporary and could be deleted or moved to Chat at any time. So leaving a comment that you expect others to be able to read down the road doesn't seem like a wise approach. – Joe Strazzere Oct 4 '18 at 11:03
  • @JoeStrazzere: While comments may be temporary, I don't imagine mods delete comments blindly - I suspect they'd leave such a comment up. But in any case, questions should be just that: questions. Partial answers and responses to answers shouldn't be part of the question; answers should be answers, and responses to answers should be comments. – V2Blast Oct 4 '18 at 18:46
  • my experience says otherwise. But you can always leave a comment and hope that whoever you wished to read it will be able to do so. – Joe Strazzere Oct 4 '18 at 19:35
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If you rephrase the information already posted in a way you feel is useful, or you add a non-trivial amount of additional tips or suggestions, post another answer, as Philip suggested.

If the answers already cover everything and you just want to say how your scenario turned out, I'm going to go ahead and say don't do anything (beyond upvoting and accepting the relevant answers), because:

  • What worked for you might not work for someone else with the same or a similar problem.
  • A non-trivial number of upvotes should imply that it will at least work in some cases, so it having worked for you doesn't add much information.

If you really want, you could probably add a comment on the accepted answer stating how it turned out.

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