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As of right now (3/17/12 02:24 -07:00) this question has a +50 bounty from the OP, but the user has only 22 rep. How is this possible?

BTW, the question itself has 6 downvotes and is flagged "not a real question"

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He's asked virtually the same question on Programmers. It may be abuse of the system to offer a bounty to prevent the question getting closed. – ChrisF Mar 17 '12 at 11:36
Maybe no bounties on questions of -3 or more? Excluding meta? – Daniel Mar 19 '12 at 18:06
up vote 9 down vote accepted

Only 75 reputation is required to set bounties, and as soon as you offer the bounty, the points you outlaid are immediately removed from your reputation score.

So it's not hard to imagine that he had 75 reputation at one point (barely enough to set a bounty), and then set a 50 point bounty, which brought him back down to 25 reputation.

That's not exactly what happened here, because you said he only has 22 reputation at the time you posted the question, which is obviously a few points off from the required minimum of 25 that he should have. But that's easily explained through a downvote or two, or through the deletion of one of his posts that had received an upvote, after the bounty amount had been sliced off from his account reputation.

Edit: As further evidence that reputation can fluctuate rapidly (a consequence of the recent changes), the user now has 27 reputation. And that will probably change some more as the rest of the Meta crowd downvotes his question.

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Thanks. I must have missed the fact that the bounty is subtracted at the time of offering – Ex Umbris Mar 17 '12 at 16:47

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