This question was posted today (it is now 08:50 here in the UK) whether 'today' is set to my local timezone or Stack Exchange's locale, I really don't know.

It already has over 800 views and a substantial amount of question upvotes and answer upvotes. The question itself isn't really amazing, is quite basic (in my view). It is too early for it to have been sent out in a Webmasters SE newsletter. As this SE site has declined in activity over the years, you rarely see a new question attract this amount of popularity in such a short space of time these days.

I was just wondering if anyone could shed any light as to how this has happened (and occasionally on other new questions too, although very rare). There are some new questions with barely 20 views in the last week.

It would be great to see this kind of traction on many new questions reinstating some of the huge activity this network witnessed a few years back.

Appreciate any thoughts...

  • 2
    This one was another that went ballistic a couple of months ago. It had had 12K views in the first 16 hours (I commented in chat about it at the time).
    – MrWhite
    Commented Jul 17, 2014 at 0:02
  • Thanks @w3d - wow, now with over 30k views.
    – zigojacko
    Commented Jul 17, 2014 at 7:13
  • Editing the question to clarify it so that others can readily understand it, and search engines can index it (e.g., identify unabbreviated keywords and make sure they're in the title...), also helps to get more views.
    – dan Mod
    Commented Jul 23, 2014 at 1:18

1 Answer 1


That question appeared in the "Hot Network Questions" and appears across all StackExchange sites. The popularity comes from StackExchange users on other sites that see it and visit from the Hot Network Questions.

The algorithm that chooses questions for that seems to like multiple upvoted answers within the first couple hours that the question is asked. So the questions that it choose tend to be:

  • Relatively easy to answer
  • Answered quickly
  • Answered by multiple people
  • Upvoted

If you want to jump on one of these freight trains you should:

  • Find a question that has been recently asked and has one or two answers already
  • Add another good answer
  • Up vote the question
  • Up vote the other answers
  • Super, that's insightful enough - thanks @StephenOstermiller
    – zigojacko
    Commented Jul 14, 2014 at 12:54

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