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Occasionally I want to take a close look at another user's reputation to see if there's anything that smells fishy about them (read: vote fraud).

Is there any reason why the http://stackoverflow.com/users/#/<name>?tab=reputation wouldn't give a complete history of all of a user's reputation gains and losses? Are there reputation-change events that aren't publicly visible?

I ask because I've run across a user that this is apparently not true of: their displayed reputation doesn't match my manual sum of their reputation record (and it's not a long, complex record).1 The difference is only some ~30 points, but that's about a quarter of their rep. They were last seen 8+ hours ago, and haven't had any rep changes of that magnitude in the past week, so I don't think it's any sort of caching problem.

1. I'd prefer not to identify them and thereby cast potentially unfounded aspersions on their character.


As always, hypotheticals make for lousy discussion and I know the user's character isn't stellar since they've already been banned for vote-fraud once. This user got the bulk of their reputation on one day when most of what they'd posted got upvoted. This is somewhat suspicious, but not necessarily something I'd want to flag someone over.

Despite everyone's takeaway from this question, I'm not really all that concerned about whether they need flagging. I just want to know why they're shown as having 133 rep when their visible rep events total 102 (by day: 8-2+80+10+5-4+18+10-23).

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Find a better way to spend your time. –  Anthony Pegram Apr 28 '12 at 0:00
    
For starters, votes are supposed to be anonymous, so you won't be able to see downvotes casted by the user. –  Dennis Apr 28 '12 at 0:10
    
@AnthonyPegram Heh, I promise that this is a tiny minority of how my time on SO is spent. And I know I'm not the only one who likes sticking it to those who would take advantage of our good community. –  blahdiblah Apr 28 '12 at 0:14
    
@Dennis Good point, but in this case they have ~30 more rep than is publicly visible. –  blahdiblah Apr 28 '12 at 0:18
    
@blahdiblah: Why do you care? There's no way to increase your reputation manually. Whatever this discrepancy is due to, it cannot be fraud. –  Dennis Apr 28 '12 at 0:20
    
@Dennis, of course there's a manual way to increase your reputation: you make a sock and upvote yourself. There are some automated protections, but they're not perfect, hence flagging. –  blahdiblah Apr 28 '12 at 0:26
    
@blahdiblah: That's not what I meant. Upvotes from another user, whether he's a sock puppet or not, would show up among the publicly visible entries in the reputation tab. So the 30 rep is not due to sock puppet voting. –  Dennis Apr 28 '12 at 0:29

2 Answers 2

Are there reputation-change events that aren't publicly visible?

I believe that downvotes that a user makes are not publicly displayed.

That said, if there is a discrepancy between displayed reputation and reputation events, that's a technical error at most, and not vote fraud. It's fine to post those publicly.

If you suspect actual abuse, flag one of the user's posts for moderator attention and explain why you think there's been been abuse. Generally, this only applies when one user is upvoting/downvoting another user extensively.

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Okay, I've included a link to them. Do you know why they have 31 more rep than is publicly visible? –  blahdiblah Apr 28 '12 at 0:40

This specific user's reputation is correct.

What you're not seeing are reputation gains/losses from deleted posts. Possibly some other things too -- I'm not entirely sure what all is public and what's not.

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Okay, so deleted posts can contribute to reputation but aren't public, thanks. –  blahdiblah Apr 28 '12 at 1:04
    
@blahdiblah deleted posts don't contribute to reputation, but deleting a post doesn't automatically trigger a rep-recalculation, which can cause a temporary discrepancy. –  trutheality Apr 28 '12 at 6:06
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@trutheality: This is no longer true. Deleted posts can contribute to reputation now, provided they they have a score of at least 3 and that they were visible (i. e., not deleted) for 60 days. Also, the deletion of any post not satisfying this criteria should affect your reputation within 5 minutes. Source: Reputation and Historical Archives - Stack Exchange Blog –  Dennis Apr 28 '12 at 6:32

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