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The Problem with Reputation: Does High Reputation Attract Too Many 'Up-Votes'?

It is well known that the stackoverflow community tends to idolize users that have high ranking, for example a relative simple answer from a user that already has 50k in reputation might have 20-30 up votes, in the other hand a "inexperienced" user with less 1k on reputation might offer a really good answer which is accepted and will even have less votes than the user with higher ranking, I think the misuse of voting tends to give higher ranking to those that already have it and might not be as good as their ranking says they are.

Any thoughts?

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marked as duplicate by Michael Petrotta, Anna Lear, Al E., Lance Roberts, Bill the Lizard Sep 20 '11 at 16:23

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

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I agree that this happens from time to time. (There's likely a sentiment among users to always up-vote the Skeet just to see how far we can take it.) But I wonder how much of this simply comes from the high-rep answers being on older questions which have helped more people over time. A lot of the high rep comes from people having been here a long time, not just having better answers. Many times I'll find an SO answer from a Google search and even though it's a simple answer I'll up-vote it (and the question) because it was helpful. Over the years, that adds up. –  David Sep 20 '11 at 16:02
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Nobody ever links to examples when this comes up. –  Bill the Lizard Sep 20 '11 at 16:24
    
decimals, floats and doubles answered by top user: stackoverflow.com/questions/618535/… stackoverflow.com/questions/4165182/… –  isJustMe Sep 20 '11 at 17:14
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jquery selector: stackoverflow.com/questions/303956/… –  isJustMe Sep 20 '11 at 17:18
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@Rafael.IT: First, which answer do you think was better and deserved more upvotes than the accepted one? Second, that answer is 2.5 years old, has had over 30,000 views, and answers a very common question that a lot of people are going to find by Googling. It's had plenty of time to accumulate votes. I don't think it illustrates your point, since it really wouldn't have mattered who wrote it. It has plenty going for it other than the author's name. –  Bill the Lizard Sep 20 '11 at 17:20
    
Same set of problems on that one. It's old, it has a lot of views, and it's the best answer to a question that a lot of people are going to have. These people got high rep by leaving good answers, not by name recognition. –  Bill the Lizard Sep 20 '11 at 17:24
    
what about: stackoverflow.com/questions/26620/… common question, nice answer, the user with the higher reputation had more upvotes even tho it was not the selected answer, was posted afterwards and was less complete. This is just an example, there are thousands out there, I'm not being paranoic –  isJustMe Sep 20 '11 at 17:29
    
@Rafael.IT: Is that answer less complete or is it just a more succinct answer to the question? Also, that question is over 3 years old. If this was a widespread problem you'd be able to come up with some recent examples. –  Bill the Lizard Sep 20 '11 at 17:35
    
I'm just pointing something that I know that exists, I guess there is not use of us arguing this as if you don't want to see the fact you will just deny it exists which is a valid point of view as well. –  isJustMe Sep 20 '11 at 17:42
    
@Rafael.IT: But I'm not just denying it. I'm explaining why each of those is not a good example. I'm willing to look at examples if you can find them. –  Bill the Lizard Sep 20 '11 at 17:44

1 Answer 1

Yeh, it happens, but anyone can earn reputation and take advantage of the phenomenon. They won't get the votes for crappy answers usually, and lets face it, the way they got there was by providing good answers, so they'll probably keep doing the same.

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