Recently, I've noticed that lots of id requests are getting resolved without any real answers posted. Either someone's stab in the dark comment turns out to be right, or the OP puts in a little more research and finds the title, then shows up and puts it in a comment. In both cases, once the OP knows the answer, he or she scampers off without posting an answer and can't be reached.
This bugs me. I want questions to have real answers if they've been answered; I don't want answers buried in the comment threads on wrong answers. If that wrong answer gets deleted, there goes the real answer. I don't want answers buried in the comment thread on the question itself either. I want real answers with substantive content, something that could potentially help other users if they're looking for the same series and remembered different things about it.
Does this bother anyone else, and if so, what should we do? In one instance, I wrote an answer based on what the OP put in the comments, after it became fairly clear the OP was gone and wasn't coming back. Now there's a real answer, but I didn't discover it, yet I'm getting rep for it, which doesn't seem right. In another instance, another user discovered the series and posted a real answer after the OP had found it, because the OP put that information at the bottom of a long comment thread on another, wrong, answer. I'm glad we got that real answer, but it was probably annoying to that user to find that all the effort put into answering the question was unneeded by the OP.
Some ideas I had for what to do in these cases:
- Free-for-all: The first user to notice gets to post an answer and gain rep.
- Community wiki: Write the answer and make it community wiki.
- Delete: The questions aren't useful, so get rid of them.
- Nothing: I'm the only weirdo who is bothered by this.
- Something else: Give me your ideas!
What does the community think is the best way to deal with this?