I'm talking about one recent question: Has a carbon compound ever been found having an ionic bond?

The question is quite trivial, so is my answer, and I expected it to get a modest sum of 2-3 upvotes over time. But 12? Flattering as it is, this just doesn't feel right. What kind of flashmob is this?

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ It's an answer that everybody can understand. I see nothing wrong with that. Just be happy about it. Voting does not always reflect how much effort was put into an answer, and simple answers often get many upvotes (sometimes even when they are wrong). $\endgroup$ – Martin - マーチン Nov 13 '15 at 7:12
  • $\begingroup$ Look, it's already +15. Not that I'm unhappy about it, but there must be a reason. Like a link on some popular site, maybe? $\endgroup$ – Ivan Neretin Nov 13 '15 at 8:08
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    $\begingroup$ I can fix it by downvoting. :D "-1 because this answer has too many upvotes." $\endgroup$ – orthocresol Nov 13 '15 at 11:54
  • $\begingroup$ No, that would be a crude workaround. We have to find the true reason behind this. We are scientists, after all. :)) $\endgroup$ – Ivan Neretin Nov 13 '15 at 12:04
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    $\begingroup$ Your question probably got featured as a "Hot Network Question" and attracted some cross-SE traffic (with 942 views, I'm betting that's the case). This has happened to me on at least 2 occasions. Also, upvoted you to 23 :) $\endgroup$ – Todd Minehardt Nov 13 '15 at 16:11
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    $\begingroup$ Improve your answer and make it worth ;) $\endgroup$ – Mithoron Nov 13 '15 at 20:44
  • $\begingroup$ Hold my beer :D I also have no idea why my kitchen-chemistry-grade answer received so many upvotes; at least I know I'm not alone. Must be the same reason that makes stupid people popular :| $\endgroup$ – andselisk Oct 9 '17 at 14:59

Posts that gain unusual attention in a short span of time are

  • $95\%$ Hot network questions: A collection of popular questions from around the SE network which are awarded arbitrary "hotness points" according to a formula which is as bizarre as it gets.

  • $\approx 5\%$ Posts suffering/benefiting from the meta effect: For instance, I'm going to downvote your answer because I saw it in meta. Famous final words $\ldots$

  • $0.000\ldots001\%$ Posts getting (un)wanted attention from other social media: Very rare instances, like this drama show. Let's just move on.

So I think what happened is the first few upvotes you got, and it got the question in the HNQ list. Now people are readily generous when they understand the answer, and this was one of the few answers in chem.SE that the majority understood. So!

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    $\begingroup$ Incurring the meta effect on a question about the meta effect. How... meta. $\endgroup$ – ringo Nov 14 '15 at 22:57
  • $\begingroup$ I'm getting mysterious upvotes on this$\,\ldots$ Seriously, the real meta I wrote didn't get this many upvotes. $\endgroup$ – M.A.R. Nov 18 '15 at 19:41
  • $\begingroup$ Your mysterious upvotes are coming via the Hot Meta Posts sidebar. It's like HNQ, but with 100% more meta. $\endgroup$ – Ilmari Karonen Nov 20 '15 at 0:20

I complained in German language chat a few weeks ago about a rather mediocre question I posted on Ask Ubuntu that got me my first good question badge, while some posts here or on German I consider well-researched and good stop at 2 or 3 upvotes.

I was advised to stop guessing the final score of a post. You will fail so badly. Accept that upvotes either happen or do not. There is no logic to it. Enjoy the reputation.

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    $\begingroup$ <chuckle> Enter the social media aspect of SE, I guess. :-) $\endgroup$ – hBy2Py Nov 18 '15 at 11:48

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