15

No. Answers should be judged entirely on their merit. Is it helpful? ➜ Up-vote, move on. Is it not helpful? ➜ Down-vote, move on. Is it neither? ➜ Move on. Is it plagiarised? ➜ Flag. If the answer is plagiarised from another answer (copied verbatim without attribution in the general case, but not limited to) then that is another problem. Such answers ...


13

I agree that leaving a comment is always more helpful than a silent downvote. Yet, there is no way to force people to do so. So once that's out of the way, we come to the idea of encouraging people to leave comments (instead of forcing). Many of the regulars here try to help as many people as possible, but you must remember that all of us have real life to ...


12

As a longtime sporadic SE lurker, it didn't even occur to me that voting could affect the page until I read this post. Seriously. I've been on the Stack Exchanges for a little over 3 years now, and I have always viewed it as asking questions and writing answers. The upvotes/downvotes just came as part of doing a good/crappy job on those activities. Of ...


12

Closure and downvotes are meant to be very different things for very different purposes. Closure is the process that stops some questions from getting answers. Closing is the official "sorry, this doesn't fit our model and hence we refrain from answering it" response. It's not related to how useful a question is. Downvotes – votes in general – ...


11

Disclaimer: I can't answer for everybody, it is a "feature" of Stack Exchange that upvotes and downvotes are personal. On one hand I can empathise with you: it's good to have a natural curiosity about science. Thus, forgive me for being blunt, but I will point out the likely reasons for downvotes here: The questions are pretty repetitive. A number ...


11

As I keep telling everyone everywhere, the real reason someone, or a group of people, downvoted your post is something only they can confirm. We can only say why a post like yours might or might not get downvoted. That said, here are my two cents. Sub-optimal formatting Your question's first revision isn't the worst I've seen, but you (1) forgot to enclose ...


11

There's this Supernova user. I really don't like their avatar and I want to downvote everything they say. I don't care that's not a valid reason for voting and votes should only be on the content, not the user. The votes are all anonymous, so I should be fine, right? Oh shucks. I lose 1 WHOLE rep for downvoting answers?! Oh no, I guess the downvoting spree ...


10

I always try to leave a complaining comment when I downvote, except when the reason is already given as a comment (then I'll upvote that). I guess this is a best practice scenario though. A one-paragraph answer, with bad writing and no, little or redundant information, however, I do not think deserves this comment. In these cases I often flag and downvote, ...


10

Re andselisk's comment: I agree that talking about individual cases helps to elucidate possible recurring problems. However, it's impossible for us to exhaustively explain downvotes/close votes on every question, and honestly it gets tiring after a while; and lately I've been feeling increasingly uneasy about the possibility that by focusing so much on ...


10

If not, could the moderators please shed light on who is doing the downvoting? No we can't; if we could, we wouldn't. Voting is private, and if the user casting votes did not want to clarify why, then that's perfectly within the workings of stack exchange. There are algorithms in place that protect everyone from targeted voting (up and down). If they didn'...


8

Question quality is never really as high as I would like it to be. There will always be subpar questions, which is one consequence of having a low bar to asking questions (you don't even need an account here). In the medium- to long-term, it would be nice to see an increase in question quality, but I am not entirely sure how to do this (we have tried before, ...


8

I'm afraid I can't serve as a personal consultant for every post, so this will be my last. However, I suspect that some of the issues brought up in my previous comment, as well as the ones here, are relevant to a few of your posts – so that may give you something to work on more generally, even after this particular post. Grammar. There are small ...


7

Recently I answered a couple of questions, did not receive any upvotes or accepts and earned the Tenacious badge. Life could be worse! Moderators and frequent supporters of Q&A sites want to build vivid communities. But these sites always attract another type of users too: the ephemeral ones that are too busy to read textbooks, too lazy to think about ...


6

Honestly, I don't get what the exact question is, and the more I look at it the more it resembles a rant. There are at least three loosely bound topics raised, which were discussed on Meta numerous times. I'm going to leave a few URLs and share some personal experience: 1. Silent downvoting This is entirely up to downvoter whether to leave a comment or ...


6

I now realize that theoretically a single community member could be responsible for the frequent -1 votes. On the flipside, I as a single community member could change that by upvoting all the questions I would like to see on this site. While I like andselisk's idea of monitoring questions for a given time-period in the future, I am afraid I tainted the ...


6

I personally try to avoid downvoting new users. In addition, I think the reputation that is needed for some "privileges" are somewhat silly. I personally dislike the fact that you need a certain reputation to comment. I understand that there is chat, but I would prefer to take my time and reply to the asker/answerer instead of setting aside who knows how ...


5

Following up on Karsten's SEDE query, the following is a plot of the fraction of votes that were upvotes, by month. There isn't anything enormously surprising there. I would not expect the fraction upvotes to hold steady. It would be interesting to compare this data to the frequency of close votes. The following shows vote totals: Interesting is the large ...


5

Firstly I'll give you my answer to your original question. There isn't going to be a book that gives you firm rules on how to compare different effects and when they dominate. The reason is because there are no such firm rules. Even if you created such a rule, you would have to tabulate all the exceptions, and there are lots of them. And you would need to ...


5

Just to repeat what the others have already said, which I agree with, a downvoted question is not necessarily bad. On the other side of the same coin, an upvoted question is not necessarily good, and upvoted and/or accepted answers can be bad or wrong. It's been posted many times in many places, but it is part of the system. I think Martin is wrong in his ...


4

I can only reiterate what has been said in the comments. I have absolutely no explanation for those downvotes. The downvoters (on these specific posts, in this specific case!) should declare why they voted down the question. In my opinion it is a good question because: it shows how it is an actual problem you ran in to you show your thoughts and ideas on ...


4

Chemistry is a beta site, less than two years old. There aren't that many users around who can vote, and of those who can, not all are active. We're slowly gaining traction though, it's easier to get votes than it was a year ago, and we have more activity. Not sure how we can improve the voting, however what this site does need is more questions and users. ...


2

I think this question is somewhat equivalent to asking "do we appreciate questions from new members", since I'm guessing it's the new members who most typically ask the questions that get down-voted and/or closed. [Aside: Can Karsten's query be filtered to look at downvotes for new members (say, < 1month and/or <200 rep, or however you ...


2

I'll keep it short: I don't think your question is homeworkish. You are confused about some thermodynamics concepts and it's absolutely okay to ask. I think it got downvoted because of lack of research effort. The difference (and proper interpretation of heat) is clearly explained in standard physical chemistry textbooks like "Elements of Physical ...


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