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Currently, the behavior is inconsistent. For most actions the user can always try to perform the action and if something is wrong, he's notified about it in nice big box of text.

For example it's not possible to vote on deleted posts. The vote arrows are still visible:

And clicking on any of them raise this friendly message:

Would be nice to have the bounty system work same way meaning the "start a bounty" link will always be visible and clickable; after clicking it, in case the bounty can't be started friendly message like the above will be displayed e.g. "You already have 3 active bounties" or "This question is less than 24 hours old" etc.

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Personally I feel it should be the other way round - the up/down vote arrows should not be visible if you can't use them. It seems a bit broken to have UI elements visible which you can't use. It's like pretending to give a baby a toy then as they reach for it, snatch it back. It's just mean! –  dav_i Oct 15 '12 at 9:29
    
@dav_i I disagree. If elements will start vanishing it will just cause confusion. People will think it's a bug and try reloading and bang their head over the wall. Seriously now - I would love to know why I can't do stuff, not just that I can't do it. It's like telling the baby "See this snack? You can't have it right now because you didn't eat anything". Explaining the reason, this is the main idea. –  Shadow Wizard Oct 15 '12 at 9:32
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Another alternative would to be unclickable but with roll-over text explaining. –  dav_i Oct 15 '12 at 9:37
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IMO it should definitely be greyed out, not just clickable with an error message. There should be a quick queue for the times after I already know why the bounty can't be started. Otherwise the system switches from being confusing the first time to frustrating every other time. –  Ben Brocka Oct 15 '12 at 12:10
    
@Ben grayed out is fine, but how would you know why? –  Shadow Wizard Oct 15 '12 at 12:30
    
@ShaWizDowArd, The reason can be placed on the title tags of the links. So that it can be seen on hover. –  Starx Oct 15 '12 at 12:40

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